Based on our research, the best materials and bases for building a DIY outboard stand or dolly are as follows:
- Mixed materials
- Medical walker
- Hand truck
- Shopping cart
- Engine stand
Let’s drill into the details and talk about each in detail!
The 7 Best DIY Outboard Stand Ideas
It’s safe to say that the best material for building a DIY outboard stand is wood.
Lumber is relatively cheap, available, and easy to work with. It can also be strengthened with metal angle braces and plywood gussets for extra rigidity.
Here’s a great tutorial on how to build a wooden outboard stand:
And here’s another one, built of 2x4x8 lumber:
Metal is also commonly used as a material for DIY outboard stands.
You can use aluminum or steel profiles or even pipes – which you can easily access if you love working with metal.
Just make sure to carefully plan the stand, so that it can handle the weight of the motor.
You will also need some metal fabrication tools like a welder, grinder, or even a pipe bender.
Here’s a great example of a DIY metal outboard stand:
3. Mixed Materials
If wood and metal work well, why not use them together?
The use of mixed materials offers many possibilities for creating unique designs.
One of the most common designs is when a solid wooden board is installed on a metal stand:
If are looking for something more stylish, don’t miss this video below:
4. Medical Walker
If you don’t want to build a stand from scratch, you can use a base to speed up the work.
Believe it or not, a sturdy outboard stand can even be built with a used medical walker.
Medical walkers are typically made of high-quality materials and can be purchased from a thrift shop for literally a couple of bucks.
All you need to do is to mount a piece of lumber directly above the cross brace.
5. Hand Truck
If you are looking for a movable solution, you may want to use a hand truck as the base of your DIY outboard dolly.
These heavy-duty units are designed for transporting heavy items even on stairs.
Therefore, they come standard with durable wheels and feature an easy-to-move design.
If you don’t want to invest in a new hand truck, you can build one from scratch using metal pipes.
Plumbing pipes can even do the job, but they offer a far less massive structure than a factory-built dolly.
6. Shopping Cart
Interestingly, many builders use a salvaged shopping cart as a base for their DIY outboard dolly.
If you want to drill into the details, here’s a great step-by-step tutorial on this conversation.
7. Engine Stand
If you are looking for a massive outboard stand that can hold a large outboard motor, you may want to consider an engine stand as the base.
With careful design and construction, these DIY stands allow you to lay the motor horizontally, which comes in handy for some repairs.
Just make sure that you bolt the motor to the stand and use an engine hoist or other support as an extra layer of security.
Conclusion – How do You Make an Outboard Motor Stand?
Home-made outboard motor stands are most often made of wood (lumber and plywood) or metal profiles (aluminum or steel).
These materials can often be found around the house, so they are essentially available for free.
However, medical walkers, hand trucks, shopping carts, or engine stands can also be used as the base for your DIY stand.
When it comes to the designing your stand, it’s wise to position the motor high enough so that a bucket will fit under it. This can come in handy when you want to flush the motor during the annual service.
Others prefer to add an extra tray or shelf to the stand, which can also make life easier during a maintenance procedure.
But no matter what design or material you use, make sure that the stand or dolly can handle the weight of your motor. Outboards can be pretty heavy, especially midsize and high-performance models.
This is why DIY outboard stands are typically built for portable motors.