Joe Dobler’s car-topping technique

Joe Dobler’s car-topping technique

Joe Dobler was a gifted engineer and pioneer plywood and epoxy boat designer. So it isn’t surprising that he should have come up with a neat way of putting a small boat on top of a car that might be seriously useful for those of you who sail lightweight canoes and other small boats.

7 thoughts on “Joe Dobler’s car-topping technique”

  1. I'd be interested in seeing photographs of this actually built and working. Does anybody have something similar? I followed the link, but it petered out and wasn't in English…..

    Regards, Mike

  2. I could deifinately use something like this now that I have converted my canoe to a sailing canoe. With all the sailing attachments, the boat is close to 110lbs without the leeboards/rudder etc. I would recommend designing it to work on either side of the vehicle, and make the frame breakdown to strap to the roof rack with the boat and mast etc. I like how it goes from the cart to the frame, smart. I'm going to build a prototype and take some pictures when its done.

  3. I built one of these last summer and it worked great. I'll try and get some pictures up soon. It's built out of metal emt electrical conduit from home depot, inexpensive, strong and easy to work with. I attach it to the roof racks with hooks on either side, in case of parked cars. I roll the canoe up and tilt it over onto some rubber covered stops and slowly lift up on the cross bar. The legs straighten out as it goes up and eventually get vertical to hold the weight, and the canoe slides right on to the racks. So much easier on the shoulders. I just reverse the process when its time to unload, I can even leave the wheels strapped to the canoe while it rides the rack. The frame comes apart with two wingnuts and collapes into a small package that fits alongisde the mast and boom on the rack. I also built a rowing frame and mast step system out of the emt conduit, my favorite fabricating material!

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