What would be your perfect lumber rack?


If you had to design one for your truck what would your ideal lumber rack be? First would you use round or rectangular tubing? I've seen one made out of stainless steel and another made of copper (both with large 3-4" tubing) and it looked too good for lumber but I'm not set up to weld stainless or copper. The copper was just for show its really too soft for a working truck. Has to be a full rack to take 20' long lumber. Has lots of tie downs, the new trucks went cheap with tie downs - four on mine new truck instead of eight on my old one. Provision for folk lift loading, and removable top bar above the tailgate to get it out of the way for loading something like a tall bookcase. Steel mesh across the back window, don't want anything like lumber or a RAS going through the passenger compartment. Clamp down instead of bolt down so no damage with holes drilled to the truck bed for mounting the rack. A 12V DC electric winch attached to the reinforced lumber rack frame would be nice to pull heavy stuff up to the bed.
Anything else?
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Responding to subject line only--levitation. :)
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Duane Bozarth wrote:

Man, would that be nice!
No more breaking your back moving tons of lumber to get the one piece you want...
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A full one, with Cherry, Maple, Ash and lots of exotics!!

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If that would lift up my truck up a little too, $3+ gas wouldn't be an issue.
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You must not be using a standard 8' bed pickup truck.
The ability to handle 20' stock is going to require a MUCH longer truck.
"Fork Lift loading" in a pickup truck is going to present several more problems.
I think you need a tandem axle 24' flatbed trailer with a reasonable amount of truck to handle said trailer.
Fred wrote:

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Pat Barber wrote:

I gather he's talking of one of the "over the cab" thingies that could theoretically be used but would be a pita for anything more than a few pieces imo. I agree the trailer would probably be simpler for most purposes of actually hauling long material of any volume w/ a pickup. ....
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Pat Barber wrote:

We've carried 28 foot steel and 24 foot lumber on our F150 long bed. It has a simple modified round tube lumber rack on the rear and we fab'd up a steel yoke which slips into a socket with a pin we punched and welded into the front bumber (no good for chrome bumpers). This gives a rack that is effectively the length of the truck bumper to bumper. 2-3 feet of overhang front and rear and you have a LOT of length. Do it on an extra-cab or quad and you have monster length capability. The killer is most dont realize the effect of a bit of weight up that high going down the road. It can really cause you some greif with regards to handling and as said in another post, even on a larger truck its only good for a few pieces here and there. Our yoke will handle perhaps a dozen 2x12-24' and that would be a major load up that high.
As far as the OP's original question I cant think of a commercially available rack which would do all he is looking for nor could I imagine the cost of fabricating such a rack, even if you fab'd it yourself. It would sound to me like you need to rely on your lumberyard/salesman to do a little more of the organization and legwork of getting materials where and when you need them. With 3$ a gallon gas we let our lumberyard do all the hauling consolidating even small orders to go out with larger ones etc.. Salesmen get a commision on all your business, let them earn it.
Mark
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Maybe one loaded with curly maple & cocobolo? ;-)
Patriarch
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One that would magically expand into the shop, carrying 400 lbs each of prime ebony, pink ivory, boxwood, and one ton of afzelia and amboyna burl, along with several thousand board feet of curly maple, curly English sycamore, and QS and curly cherry.
Times five.
    -- Andy Barss
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Andy Barss
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