The "Where in the @#*& do I Store This Kayak" Brainstorming Session
by Colleen - August 24, 2003

In April I bought a . It was a great deal! Really. Only $300, thanks to Krishna's Costco membership! However, I soon realized that owning a kayak meant I needed to be able to transport it and store it. Details details! The kayak fit on top of my old car, but I didn't have a rack for it. So it required strapping it to the roof on top of foam blocks. Secure? I think. However, the straps would hum in the wind as I drove down the highway. It sounded like a scene from an attack of the killer bees a herd of killer bees were following me. The sound was quite loud and so I had to turn up my stereo quite loudly. Hearing aids: $2,000. I decided a new car to replace my 12 year old car and to be able to easily carry my kayak was in order. New car: $14,000.

Enter problem two. Where was I to store this thing? It won't fit in my basement. I don't have a garage. From April to August it unfortunately become part of my decor. It sat in my livingroom. And despite what my dad will tell you, NO, I DID NOT sit in the kayak to watch tv. Finally one night I began brainstorming about what to do with the kayak with my dad and a good friend, Martin. Here are the many solutions we rolled around that day. It was a true brainstorming session. No idea was left undrawn.

If I had a garage, it would've been easy enough to pull in the car and hoist it to the ceiling. But this was an expensive solution. Not that buying a new car wasn't.

My original idea was to build a box on the side of my house where I could store the kayak. A simple wooden box that would run horizontal to the ground with a little slanted roof on it. Something to keep it stored on it's side and out of the weather. Then came the idea of, "Hey, buy a huge sewer drain tube, attach that to the side of the house and slide the kayak into it. Yeah, great idea. Except not much room from the house to the end of my property. The tube would overhang over the neighbors yard. That idea went to the crapper.


Then there's the handy car lift idea. Add on a few hydraulic lifts and I'd be able to lift the car off it's frame and store the kayak underneath. When I was done, the lifts go back down and it's a normal car again. Neat, huh? Except unibody construction kind of gets in the way.

How about Colleen's Kayak Coaster? The kayak would very easily slide onto a coaster car that would slide straight from the car roof and right into a storage tunnel on the side of the house. That would work! I could even charge admission during the off season. It would however consume my entire back yard.

Hey! Why not put helicopter propellers on the paddle, allowing me to fly straight from the car roof into the back yard!

Let's not stop at helicopter propellers! Let's go straight to a small jet engine! Except there's no steering mechanism, hence the name WreckJet.

In keeping with the flying idea...

Hey, why not just find myself a big strong guy to do the work?

By now you think we must be running out of crazy ideas! Actually not....

Okay. We got it. Let's build an underground chute that is spring loaded. When the lever is pulled, the spring loaded mechanism shoots the kayak straight out of the tube and, with a few adjustments, it should land squarely on top of the car. Of course it would not be advisable to be sitting in the kayak at the time it is shot out of the tube.

We could always build a weighted see-saw. The boat gets mounted upside down on the other end of the see-saw so that when the weight on the other end is released, it is flipped in a perfect upright position on top of the car.

But why make things any more complicated than they have to be? I'm sure the borough would grant me the proper permit to install a crane in my tiny back yard so that I can just bring the car to the kayak!! Yeah! I don't think the neighbors would mind. And hey, I can live with out that back porch that would have to be torn down to make room for it.

In the end, the solution was actually quite simple and rather inexpensive, a mere $25. Somewhere along the line my dad said hey, shove the darn thing through a basement window! This idea we thought was lost among all the other crazy ideas. But in the end, it was the true winner!! Martin rigged it up for me. The basement window and ceiling were rigged up so that the kayak quite simply slides through the basement window and into a set of slings that are attached to the ceiling. Of course it barely squeaks through the window, but it fits! Now if I can only find a way to pull my car up to the basement window....

The end...for now.