I use a 9 year old Chrysler Grand Caravan. I know, it's a
minivan! But, I can lay 49" by 97" sheet goods flat in the back. I can
also put an 11 ft. board inside.
The advantage over a truck is it is all enclosed.
Jim in Colorado
I'm going to weigh in with the full size pick-up crowd. My work vehicle
is a '85 chevy 2x4. I'd buy newer, but the damn thing just keeps
starting. IMHO nothing beats a old pick-up or full size van for
carpentry, (or many other things for that matter). This presupposes
that you have the parking space for said vehicle and that the ownership
of such doesn't create a social *four paw* for you.
The obvious answer is to rent one of the Borg's trucks for $19.99 for 75
minutes. They are stuck with depreciation, insurance, maintenance, etc...
It would take 15 rentals to pay for a decent trailer.
Me, I haul my plywood in a BMW X5 SUV. You should see the looks when I pull
up to the loading dock. I can stuff about a half dozen sheets of 3/4" ply
back there. My problem is I like having 0 to 60 in under 7 seconds (no ply
in the back!), slot car handling, and room to haul the family and gear to
the beach in the safest SUV on the road.
I agree that must be pretty funny to see the Borg guys look at your Beemer
as you load wood into it.
but, honestly, that has to be the ugliest vehicle out there that I've seen
in a LONG time, and it costs upwards of $40K. ICK.
Depends how much you need to move. Here in UK, I use a 10ft x 6ft flat bed
trailer behind a normal car. I can carry almost 3/4 ton legally. No extra
insurance or tax and I'm not driving a truck when I don't need it. Downside
is that the combination is more difficult to drive and you need space to
OK, if you're considering a Ranger (Chevy S10, Dodge Dakota, Toyota
Tacoma, etc, any of the small pickups), understand they don't come
with an 8' bed. That means you'll be carrying stuff with the tail
gate down, and have to secure it (ropes, etc). In addition, sheets
of ply will have to be put across the fenders, they won't fit on
the floor of the bed.
If you go to a full-size pickup (Ford F150, Chevy Silverado, Dodge
Ram) you can get an 8' bed (not in the Toyota Tundra, tho). To me
the long bed is a worthwhile advantage, in that I can put 8' lumber,
ply, etc in and not have to worry about tying it down. You may
have to look for a long-bed, tho, because the "standard" size is a
6.5' bed, and they are much more common.
I would advise, whatever size truck you choose, that you get an
extended cab model. Having that extra space so you can put your
tools, duffle bag, or whatever _inside_ is extremely useful, and
you will regret it if you don't have it.
Be aware that a fullsize pickup, extended cab, 8' bed, is a very
long vehicle and can be a pain to maneuver (it takes 4 lanes of
traffic plus a bit to make a U-turn with my F150, I don't even
try to go thru the drive-thru at Wendy's).
Dang, is this a serious newsgroup or what? :-) Thanks a bunch for all
the answers - I'll have to post a binary of the "final solution." Might
lose an eye to a flying rolling pin, but I think it'll be worth it :-).
"Pops" is right. I've got a '93 long bed GMC Sierra farm truck that has been
loaned out to almost everybody in the neighborhood at least once. It's made
more trips to the dump than I have, moved more furniture than I own, and
even spent a weekend or two touring Salt Lake City and Wendover while I
stayed home slaving over a hot table saw.
Go for it.
Tue, Sep 23, 2003, 1:24pm (EDT-1) firstname.lastname@example.org (Al) says:
<snip> just something reliable to move the wood..<snip>
Get you a decent full size pickup, something with a bench seat.
Then you can take your old lady along, and strap her in right next to
you, rather than a weeny little truck, with her sitting next to the
opposite door. She'll think that's romantic, and you'll have someone
to help with the plywood.
The whole of life is a learning process.
- John Keel
Life just ain't life without good music. - JOAT
Web Page Update 23 Sep 2003. Some tunes I like.
FWIW Al, I recently bought a 91 ford econoline work van. Reliable and
tons of room. It will easily accomodate full 4x8 sheets. In fact,
the distance from the back of the seats to the rear doors is about
10ft. I love the fact that I can go buy a bunch of stuff and unload
it as I need it, or, if the weather is bad, wait until the weather
improves to unload.
Al, I have posted some pictures in the binaries group
showing one way to solve your problem with a compact truck.
If you do get a compact truck, be sure to get heavy duty
suspension and a decent sized engine. Some of the base
models with four cylinders aren't rated for much more than
two big passengers and a basket of laundry.
The following is my blather that goes with the pictures in
the binaries group......
There are many ways to move wood, here's what works for me
using a compact pickup. Since the truck was going to run
with one or two passengers and no cargo over 90% of the
time, I didn't want to get a full sized truck so decided to
make a small truck work for me.
One important criteria was to be able to carry 4 x 8 foot
sheet goods flat, as most of you know the average compact
pickup doesn't have 4 feet between the wheel wells.
There are 4 pictures associated with this post. See alt.
binaries.pictures.woodworking if you are interested.
Carrier: Shows the sheet goods carrier in the back of my
compact pickup. It is 1x construction with butt joints glued
and screwed and gussets in the corners. All screws within
cutting depth of a skill saw from the top were removed. 3/4
plywood would work nicely too. 2x lumber would be
unnecessarily heavy to handle. It has one cross piece for
structural stability and sheet goods support. It needs one,
more would reduce the utility of the storage spaces under
the sheet goods. This bed liner has holes cut in it so I can
use the tiedowns. It came that way, but if it didn't I would
have cut them myself.
Cutting: Shows the carrier on short saw horses so it can be
used as a sacrificial cutting table. You might be able to
see some of the many cuts into the top edge. A few more
projects and I will cut off the top 1.5 inches and replace
it. I will also lower the top gussets so they aren't in the
way of cutting or replacing the top edge. The saw horses
and carrier have matching notches so they form a secure
table when the carrier is set on the saw horses. The saw
horses need to be will cross braced to they won't collapse
when you wrestle heavy stuff on and off the carrier. You can
also drag the thing across the floor to move it if you notch
Assembly: That is a sheet of 5/8 plywood on top of the
carrier to serve as an assembly table. 1/2 plywood felt too
flimsy, 3/4 was a paint to move around. The top is indexed
to the carrier with cleats. It's not a stiff super flat
torque box assembly table, but is is real handy. I have
assembled 200+ pound caseworks on the table and wrestled
them on and off the table by myself without knocking the
table over. 1/2 plywood felt too flimsy, 3/4 was a pain to
move around. The top is 4 feet x 6 feet 9 inches. I would
have made it 4 x 8 feet except my storage space wasn't tall
Stowed: It stows against the wall between the end of a row
of storage cabinets. You can see the cleats on the bottom of
the top that locate it on the carrier.
I don't think construction technique or materials matter as
long as you build a stable system that isn't too heavy to
handle. Also note that no fasteners are required to use the
system in it's three modes.
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