The Panel Carrier from WOOD Mag's Tips

This is a picture of my panel carrier.  The original plan came from WOOD magazine's Online Tips section.  It is repeated every few months so you might catch the plans for it if you are diligent about checking every day.

Basically it isn't much more than a ol' 2x4 with a few scraps of 1x3 added to it.  At the bottom (the carrier is upside-down in the picture) is a couple of 1x4's, one about 4" and the other about 5".  Both are attached to the 2x4 flush with the bottom, the 5" piece over the 4" piece creating a hook of sorts.  

At the top, another 1x4 scrap is mounted to the 2x4, with a space of about 48-1/4" between it and the bottom 4" scrap.  obviously a plywood panel fits between these two scraps.  A small 8" length of 1x3 pivoting around its center on a single screw serves as a swing-away cleat to hold a panel on the carrier.  

A 3/8" rod in a like hole through the bottom serves as an axle to support a pair of wheels from an old barbeque.  These make it really easy to move panels by yourself.  A pair of heavy-duty gate handles are mounted on the opposite side to provide a place to grip when lifting the panel.

It works like this:  Pull the panel most of the way out of your truck and lay the carrier across the center.  Catch one edge in the hook at the bottom, secure the panel by swinging the cleat at the top down to catch it and hold it.  Grab the carrier by the handles, they give you a great place to swing the panel around with confidence.  Lay the carrier wheels on the ground, and you can move the sheet just about anywhere by yourself (no stairs!).  Use the handles again when it is time to store the panel where it goes.

Not seen or installed yet is a heavy-duty screweye at the center on the handle side, which WOOD recommended when you want to get a panel up onto a worktable without damage.  Place a pulley in the ceiling over the table and have a clip hook on a line dangle from it.  Clip the hook onto the screweye and hoist the panel up until you can get it on your table.  Simply release the clip and take off the carrier when done.

I've use mine a lot and I really like it.  Very simple and effective, and cost me practically nothing (just the 3/8" rod and the axle caps).  I hope you'll try one too, I think you'll like it.

Here are some more pics of the carrier (click for larger images).

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