Friday, August 03, 2007

DIY truck rack = kayaking vacation!

Whew, it is hot here! Dan and I have decided we need to escape, so we've been busy with prepping for a camping/ paddling trip downeast.

First, we had to build a kayak rack for the truck. We designed it ourselves, gathering inspiration from random trucks with homemade racks. Dan did not want to have to cut holes in the bed liner, so he came up with a very clever solution, bolting the rack to the truck's factory- installed secure cargo loops. The end result is, as is our want, built like a brick ***house, and will comfortably carry 3 kayaks (thanks, Karen for being our test 'yak!).

We put it together with 2x4s leftover from building the laundry room (b4 blog) and some carpet scraps left from a groovy homemade car track/village Dan made for Kyle before Kyle could drive a real car. The total cost was under $10 --we did have to purchase some carriage bolts/washers.

It is fairly easy to get them on the rack and ratched down, and now we have room for lots of camping gear in the truck bed. I'm way over my minimalist camping phase, now I have a screen tent, too.

Next, the chicks.

Our cute baby chicks are now adolescents, and needed room to roam, and a simple caretaking routine for our vacation zookeepers, friends Bill & Michelle.

Of course, creating a simple solution is never simple. We had to put up new garden fencing so that we could use the old chicken wire fencing (formerly protecting the veg garden from the chickens) to subdivide the chicken yard into two chicken
yards. The idea is to segregate the chicks from the chickens, while allowing them to see one another and get used to each other before they begin co-habitating in Henbogle Coop.

Hot sweaty work, but it is done.
Then move the temporary chick coop/cold frame from the barn to the chick yard. And teach the chicks to go into the coop every night before it gets dark, using treats as a lure. It seems to be working, and the chicks, now that they are over the freak-out phase, seem to be loving outdoor living.


Vincent said...

I like the custom kayak rack! Do you have any cross bracing? So if you make any sudden start/stops it doesn't keel over the back of the truck? A simple cable turn-buckle would probably work instead of adding more lumber. Dan was your father a carpenter?

Dan said...

What's your point?