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How To... Make a Collapsible Wood Saddle Rack

Collapsible wood saddle racks are a handy accessory around any barn or stable. They can hold English or Western saddles, and when not in use are easily collapsed so that they're out of the way. They're also portable; just unhook them and take them anywhere you want.

Collapsible wood saddle racks like the one below are inexpensive, fast, and easy to make. In the text and photos below we'll show you how to make a collapsible wood saddle rack suitable for hanging on any sturdy wood surface.

A collapsible wood saddle rack ready for a saddle.

Collapsible, portable, wood saddle rack

The Materials

To make a collapsible wood saddle rack like the one shown above you will need:

  1. A "J" hook, also called a tarp or rope hook. This one cost us .79 cents at a local hardware store.
  2. Two screws for attaching the "J" hook. The screws we used were 1 1/2 inches long.
  3. Two more screws for screwing the two 2X4s (#5) together. The screws we used were 3 inches long.
  4. An eye bolt, also called an eye hook, or a screw eye. This one cost us .92 cents at a local hardware store.
  5. Two 2X4 (2 inches wide X 4 inches tall) boards, cut to equal lengths (they should be long enough for your particular saddle). If necessary, sand them so they won't leave splinters in you or your saddle.

    The 2X4s in the photo are 27 inches long. We arrived at this length after measuring the length of our saddle.

The materials to build a collapsible wood saddle rack.

Materials to make a collapsible wood saddle rack

We used 2X4s we had on hand. If you don't happen to have any handy, they are inexpensive at most local home improvement or lumber stores. If you don't like the idea of cutting the 2X4s to the length you want yourself, many stores will do the cutting for you free of charge (if you buy the boards there, of course).


Screw The Boards Together

Place one 2X4 on it's edge onto a work surface. Holding the second 2X4 so it is long-ways from side-to-side, center it across the top edge of the first 2X4.

The result should be the two 2X4s looking like a capitol letter "T." Secure the two boards together by placing one screw into each end. See the photo below.

Screwing one end of the boards together. Do the same thing at the opposite end.

Place the two wood boards together

 

This should be the result after completing the step above. Notice that, compared to the photo above, we've turned the boards upside down.

The two 2X4s screwed together

Insert The Eye Bolt

Insert the eye bolt into a sturdy wood surface where you want your wood saddle rack to hang.

To insert the eye bolt, first drill a pilot hole with an electric drill and drill bit. Use a drill bit slightly smaller in diameter than the eye bolt.

Comparing an eye bolt to the drill bit we're going to use. Notice that the drill bit is slightly smaller in diameter than the eye bolt.

An eye bolt and drill bit

 

Looking at the wood surface you're going to use to mount your saddle rack, decide how high up you want to mount your rack. Mark the spot with an "X," then drill a pilot hole.

Don't drill the hole too deep. You only want the hole to be as deep as the stem of the eye bolt is long.

Drilling a pilot hole.

Drilling a pilot hole

 

After the pilot hole has been drilled, begin screwing in the eye bolt. You can begin screwing it in by hand.

Screwing in the eye bolt.

Begin screwing in the eye bolt

 

When screwing in the eye bolt by hand gets to be too hard to continue you can use a screwdriver for more leverage to help you finish.

Using a screwdrive to finish screwing in the eye bolt.

Finish screwing in the eye bolt

Attach The "J" Hook

After the eye bolt is screwed all the way in, you're ready to attach the "J" hook to your saddle rack.

Begin by placing the "J" hook through the eye bolt as shown below. Next, hold the saddle rack (the joined 2X4s) underneath the "J" hook, also as shown below. Make sure the "J" hook is flat against the top of the saddle rack, and that the saddle rack is pushed firmly against the wall or post. Mark where to place the screws.

Mark where to place the screws to attach the J hook.

Mark where to attach the J hook

 

Then move the saddle rack and the "J" hook to a work surface and screw in the screws.

Attach the "J" hook with screws.

Mark where to place the screws through the J hook

Your Collapsible Wood Saddle Rack Is Finished!

You're done! To use your saddle rack, hang it as shown below.

Hang the completed wood, collapsible saddle rack.

Hang the wood saddle rack

 

To collapse your saddle rack when you're not using it turn it around and hang it the other way.

The collapsed saddle rack.

Portable wood saddle rack, collapsed

This type of saddle rack is also portable. Just install eyebolts anywhere you want to hang it.


Wood Saddle Rack Options

While this style of saddle rack is pretty straight forward, there are at least a couple of common options you can choose from when making one.

For one option, you can put the "J" hook on either 2X4. In the photos above you'll notice we placed the "J" hook on the 2X4 that was on it's edge. This makes the finished saddle rack look like an upside-down letter "T."

But in the photo below you'll notice that this saddle rack was put together with the "J" hook on the wide, flat 2X4 (not the one on its edge). This makes the finished saddle rack look like a right-side up letter "T." We think this makes a more stable surface for larger saddles like the one in the photo.

This saddle rack was put together in a right-side up letter "T" shape. The rack can also be put together the opposite way, like an upside down letter "T."

Saddle on a wood saddle rack

For another option, you can use boards that are a different size than 2X4. While 2X4s are probably the most common size of board for this type of saddle rack, you can use bigger boards like 2X6s, or you can use one 2X4 and one 2X6.


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