Simple Foldable Kayak Trolley in 20 Minutes




A simple kayak trolley, made in PVC tubing. Easily to disassembly for transportation.
It is lightweight and fits perfectly an Ocean Kayak Malibu II sit-on-top kayak. If you have a different kayak, only need to adjust the distance between holes in the frame to make it fit.

Enjoy it ;-)

Step 1: Materials

Two wheels (recycled from an old lawn mower)
PVC pipes: 75 and 37 mm of diameter, about 1 meter of each one
2 screws with nut (M8x110mm) used as wheel axle
2 screws with nut (M6x80mm) to join the PVC pipes in a frame

Total cost of project: near 0 (just some cents to buy the screws)

Step 2: Tools

Electric drill
38mm drill crown
8mm drill bit
6mm drill bit
Hand saw
Measuring tape

Step 3: The Parts

Cut 1 piece of 75mm pipe. For my kayak it was 540mm in length.
Cut 2 pieces of 37mm pipe, one for each wheel. In this instructable they are 420mm in length.

Dimensions and holes needed are shown in next step pictures.

Step 4: Assembly

The holes in 75mm pipe are 38mm diameter. The centre of each hole is 44mm from each side. The distance between holes is 410mm that is the distance between scupper holes in the cockpit of the kayak. Also will need 6mm holes located perpendicularly to 38mm holes (and also 44mm from side).

At 25mm from the side of 37mm pipe, make a hole of 8mm. Use M8 x 110mm screws to attach the wheels to the pipes.

M6 x 80mm screws are located as shown in the figure to join the three pipes. The distance of the hole is 200mm from wheel side, and it has to be made perpendicularly to 8mm hole. It gives 220mm of tube that you have to pass through scupper holes in the kayak.

If you have a different model of kayak, probably you will have to change the distance between 38mm holes, to make them fit scupper holes of your kayak.

Step 5: The Result

Here is what you get, a simple trolley to move easily your kayak.

Step 6: Folding the Kart

To fold the trolley, just remove M6x80mm screws, and insert 37mm PVC pipes inside 75mm pipe (as shown in figure).

Step 7: Others...

I have used polyethylene tubes inserted at the top of 37mm PVC tubes. This was for two reasons: to prevent sand or dust inside the tube, and to have some space to keep the screws safe when the trolley is disassembled.

My first design was made with aluminium, but finally I decided to use PVC tube which was lighter but hard enough for this project.



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    27 Discussions

    very good!!

    just whacked one up by eye as i'm too lazy to find my measuring tape.
    if anyone else is feeling lazy, the part i failed with is not getting the bolts 90 degrees to each other on the wheel rods.

    now my trolley has crazy "toe-in"-

    i used:-
    1 piece of metal bar chopped in half
    1 plastic drain pipe
    some old coathanger wire (ran out of bolts so tied wire through the holes)
    2 bolts
    4 washers
    munted bbq trolley wheels
    cost: $0

    now my setup is LEGENDARY!!!


    5 years ago on Introduction

    I have had a few problems with making this trolley. First, the scupper holes in my kayak would only accept a 20mm pipe, so I risked the $4 on a couple of pieces, but it isn't strong enough to support the weight without bending. I will be checking an aluminium pipe supplier and see if I can find a stronger substitute.

    7 replies

    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    With only 20mm maybe you have to use aluminium or reinforce the PVC pipes internally with a stainless steel bar or similar... My pipes are 37mm and they bend slightly so 20mm definitively is not enough for this project.


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    Yes, I discovered that. I picked up some aluminium pipe today, but haven't had time to drill the holes in it. I was surprisingly cheap (AUD$8.85 for 1m). The OD is around 32mm, slightly wider than the approx 30mm OD of so called 20mm PVC.


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    Good news everyone! I tested the aluminium tubing at the dam last weekend and they were perfect, so for only a slight weight increase, and a few more dollars I have a working trolley. I used plastic wheels from a second hand golf buggy/trolley. Total cost around AUD$28 including the PVC that was replaced.

    Hi, My scupper holes are 3/4" in diameter. So, I need to use a 1/2" aluminum tube for the supports. What hardware can I use to it the wheel to this tube without compromising the strength of the tube ?



    3/4" is 19mm, which is quite narrow. I wouldn't go as small as 1/2" (12.7mm). I would seriously doubt the aluminium would be strong enough at that diameter unless is was solid rod rather than tubing, but the tubing would be cheap enough that it might be worth experimenting. maybe even adding a smaller diameter that fits snugly into the larger for added strength.

    Right. That's my concern. The scupper holes are 3/4". The 3/4" tube Just fits, so I'm concerned that if I use that width rod, it will be too hard to get the posts up through the scupper holes. That's why I'm looking at the 1/2". It's a pretty strong rod, I think it will hold, I'm just not sure what size hardware to purchase to attach the rod to the wheels.

    This looks great. I love how if folds down so compactly. My question is: is this difficult to position under the kayak ? I love the easy of this design, but I worry that it will be difficult to get the posts into the scupper holes. If anyone has made this and can comment, I'd appreciate it.

    1 reply

    It is VERY easy to position under kayak, even if you are alone.
    You can also put the kayak over a side (rotate 90º), position the trolley and stand it up again.

    rawly old

    7 years ago on Introduction

    i love this idea. I figure if I put caps on the 37mm bits and drill my
    axle holes thru them, it will reinforce them enuf for me to use small
    spoked wheels and create a bicycle trailer for my boat. thanks a

    2 replies
    chusgsrawly old

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Sure... my first idea was with spoked wheels (as they will not stuck in soft sand) but unfortunately I couldn't get them.
    Thanks for your comment

    rawly oldchusgs

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    i hear you about the problem with smaller wheels stuck in the sand.
    i've been there. So... for all those out there in need of wheels, may
    i suggest this; Kids out grow their 1st bikes in no time at all. Having
    built several bike trailers for various functions, i've found one can
    often pick 12" & 16" wheeled bikes at garage sales or thrifts for less
    than the cost of a new 16" tire. If you can find an old trailabike. the
    kind that hitches to the seat post, they convert easily into a single
    wheel bike trailer for off road touring. Check your local craigslist;
    there's almost always such items out there for cheap.

    SFX Master

    8 years ago on Step 5

    Great idea using the drainage holes to mount the trolley!


    8 years ago on Step 5

    Genius is the only word I can think of! Thanks.