Monday, January 18, 2010

Padding Your Rack

A New Way to Use Fun Noodles

You've seen those Styrofoam swim noodles that children play with in the pool.  These things are very handy for canoers.  We're always building canoe racks and car toppers so we have some place to put our canoes while we are paddling them. In order to keep the wooden or metal racks from rubbing holes in our boats we need to pad them.  Styrofoam noodles work well for that purpose.

To pad a support bracket, slice a Styrofoam noodle down one side.  Use the type with the hole down the center.  This makes it easier to wrap the noodle around the board, pipe, angle iron or tube steel you've used as a support.  Slice only half way through to the center hole.

Pry apart the the noodle and wrap it around the pipe or whatever support structure you are using as shown in the diagram below.

You can also use Styrofoam noodles to cover the top edge of a metal pipe support.

Styrofoam noodles also work with tube steel supports.

Metal angle iron or a T shaped metal support can also be covered by the noodle.

You can also clamp the foam noodle over the top of a 2x4 or 2x6.  Any thicker board won't work.

Finally, to fasten the foam around the support, use zip ties or duct tape to secure the Styrofoam noodle in place.  If you do a lot of canoeing, kayaking, sailing or other boating, grab a supply of Styrofoam noodles at the end of next year's swim season. They make great boat bumpers and a nice soft paddle rack or sail rack.

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