How to Build a Wood Truck Rack

by Steve Smith
pick up truck 838581 image by Rusty McCloud from

A wood truck rack transports ladders, canoes, siding and larger pieces of wood. It is an essential necessity for contractors and adventurers. A simple wood truck rack is installed right inside of your pick-up truck and it is a project that will take a weekend or so to create.

Step 1

Measure the distance from the bed to the top of the roof over the cab and add a foot. Square cut two 2-by-4 boards to this measurement using a miter saw or table saw with miter attachment.

Step 2

Measure the width of your truck bed and add one and a-half feet to this measurement. Then cut two more 2-by-4 boards to this length.

Step 3

Attach one of the 2-by-4 boards you cut in Step 1 to the end of the boards you cut in Step 2, using 3 inch wood screws. Use the angle braces and 1-inch screws to reinforce these boards along the seams. The longer horizontal board will overlap the vertical boards by about 8 inches. The result is a large U-shaped rack.

Step 4

Install the rack in the bed of your truck using metal anchor bolts. Then cut another 2-by-4 board to the width of the truck bed and lay it between the vertical rack posts. This board adds strength and support. Use 3-inch wood screws to attach this support to the posts.

Repeat Steps 1 to 4 to build another U-shaped rack for the back of the truck and install it in your truck bed. Then brace the two racks with 2-by-4 boards cut to the length of the truck bed. Use wood screws to secure the support boards to the rack.


  • Use angle braces wherever they are needed for additional support. Your rack may need more support depending on its future use, so consider this when you install the braces.

Items you will need

  • Boards, 2 inch by 4 inch
  • Metal angle braces
  • Wood screws, 3 inch
  • Power drill and driver
  • Miter saw
  • Tape measure

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