2013-12-30

Transporting bows

Well, I've been living in the truck since may now. One of the single most annoying things is the "long stuff" storage down one side of the bed of the truck. This has included at various times: Atl-atls and their darts, bows, bow staves, arrows both loose and not, a folding bow saw, etc. The best location for this pile of long items has been balanced on top of the wheel well on one side of the bed of the truck, where the space is hard to use for anything else.

The problem is, every time you move things around in the truck it all slides off the wheel well and then you have this annoying game, while crawling under the platform to put everything else back, of trying to balance that stuff and hold it in place while you slide other things back. The other option is to remove it all every time something adjascent is removed, and put it back again. Super annoying.

Well, at the primitive skills gatherings and elsewhere I noticed some time ago many people simply put a large PVC pipe on their roof, and store things in there, so I'm giving it a try.

The pipe is a bit over 7 feet long, 6" in diameter. It's made with 2 male/male adapters and 2 screw-top caps. This allows me to get into either end of the pipe, so that arrows that slide to one end can be retrieved. Right now it has 1 bow-stave, 1 stick-bow, and 2 recurves, as well as some arrows. The recurves take up a lot of the space due to their... well... curve, so there's not much space left. While you could fit quite a few stick-bows. I made it over 7' so it could fit a full-sized atl-atl dart. So far I've liked darts closer to 6', but Jess is tall, so it seemed like I might as well make it long enough in case one of us decides they like long darts.

The pipe is tied to the roof with 2 small hose-clamps running around the roof-rack bars, and 2 large ones running around the pipe. The large clamps interlace with the small clamps. This does let the pipe rock a little, but it seems pretty secure, we'll see!

BTW, there's a trick to doing this. When you glue together PVC you usually use this primer stuff that preps the surface for the glue. Most of the joints in the pipe I just made are short of being slide all of the way on. One of them is all of the way on. I think the difference is that the one we slide all of the way on we skipped the primer, this leaves the surface smoother allowing it to slide together more easily. If you are using it to hold water the absolute perfect seal might matter, but for my use very very near air-tight is plenty good enough for me.

Their is one catch, which is that I need to purchase a large pair of slip-jaw pliers to open the caps. Also, since I purchased the pipe and fittings rather than managing to scrounge them it's about $100 in parts. Still, that's not much for the headaches it'll save, not too mention the bows getting a lot less beat up being nice and safe in their own compartment.

Also, our truck is now like 7'6" tall... oh well, we already didn't fit in parking garages. We'll see how it affects gas-milage. EDIT: I added 2 more hose-clamps, one on each roof-rack bar. The two hose-clamps on each roof-rack bar are on opposite sides of the mount for the bar, separating them by maybe 4 inches. The hose-clamp around the pipe goes through both, thus giving it some stability so it doesn't rock back and forth.

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