Today, we’ll be building a multipurpose ramp which can be used for a BMX or mountain bike. My friend James is helping out with his truck and workspace
Our ramp will be made from just one piece of 1/2” plywood and some 2×4’s. Including the screws, the materials are only about $50. I’m spending slightly more for pressure treated wood and stainless deck screws, just to make the ramp more resistant to the outdoors. With normal wood it’ll be just as sturdy.
First we’ll draw the profile of the ramp on the plywood. My ramp has some curve to it, so we’re using a PVC pipe to trace a smooth bend. Once we’re done tracing the shape, we’ll cut it out with a jigsaw and use it as a template for cutting another piece. These pieces will become the sides of the ramp.
The rest of this wood will be used for the riding surface, but first we need to cut a bunch of support beams from the 2×4’s. These should be cut to the width you want your ramp to be, but we’ll need to make them slightly shorter to account for the plywood. You’ll see why in a minute.
Next, we’ll use our beams to frame out the ramp. We’ll fasten them in place with two deck screws on each side. Once the ramp is framed out, we’ll cut the faces from the remaining wood. We’re cutting some extra angles and sanding for a tighter fit, but this part won’t make or break anything.
The faces get attached with screws, just like the beams. Since the curvature of the ramp is really mellow, the plywood easily bends into place when you screw it in. We’re also making sure these screws are buried real good so they can’t stick out and become a hazard. I’m going to need to stencil my channel logo on here, but one thing at a time.
As you can see, we measured the beams so that the face would hang over the edge slightly. This ramp should hold up to everything from oversized riders to crashes. Although it’s small, it’s really fun. I can’t ride on it here for long, so let’s pack up and go someplace else.
At just 6 feet long, this kicker ramp could fit in the back of an SUV, although it’s probably a two person job. If you’re just dragging it around it’s not too bad.
For absolute beginners, this ramp provides a few challenges and plenty of room for growth, but the back side makes it possible to roll over without jumping it. Riding the ramp the opposite way is great practice for getting over obstacles and learning to bunny hop. On a BMX, you can get creative with nose bonks, manuals, and all sorts of fun stuff. We could have made this back side go all the way to the ground, but the 4” drop makes it a lot more interesting.
If you want to build this exact ramp, there’s a link in the video description with a materials list and measurements. What I really want you to get from this video though, is a starting point to design your own ramp. Your ramp can be bigger, smaller, wider, or have a totally different shape. You can even add handles, wheels, or a custom paint job. A piece of sheet metal at the bottom can even make it work for skateboards. The best part is that a custom ramp could cost less than one mountain bike tire. Most home improvement stores can even make the big cuts on site, so you can bring the lumber home in your Toyota Corolla.
What do you guys think? How can we improve this ramp without making it bigger or more expensive? Give the newbies some inspiration by sharing your ramp building tips in the comments. Thanks for riding with me today and I’ll see you next time.
Sort of instructions on how to build the ramp: http://www.sethsbikehacks.com/diy-bmxmtb-ramp-materials-list/