For me, the hardest part of cyclocross racing has always been getting over the barriers. The only thing to do is practice, practice, practice. So, I decided to go online and find plans to make my own barriers. I came across several different designs and materials used and thought the the quickest and easiest would be PVC tubing.
Off to the hardware store I went to pick up the materials that I needed. Here is a list of what you will need to make two barriers 4 feet in width:
- 21 feet of 1/2 inch PVC tubing (2-10 ft lengths plus 1 additional foot if your store will cut it, otherwise 3-10 ft lengths, additional cost)
- 4 – 1/2 inch 90 degree elbows
- 4 – 1/2 inch T’s
- 8 – 1/2 inch end caps (optional, additional cost)
- PVC cement (optional, additional cost)
- About $10.00
- Saw (I used a hacksaw)
- Sharpie marker
- Tape measure
- 20 – 30 minutes
You can use 3/4 inch if you want your new barriers a little beefier. 3/4 inch will cost a little more. If you want the barriers wider, just add to the total feet in length that you will need.
From one 10 ft length, cut two 4 ft pieces. These will be the horizontal width of your barriers. Cut the remaining two foot section in half and set the pieces aside with your other one foot section that your store cut for you. Take your other 10 ft length and measure and cut four 12 3/4 inch pieces. These pieces will be the vertical upright that will give you ~ 13.12 inches in hight. UCI specs put the barriers at 40 cm in hight, that is just under 13 1/8 inches. From the remaining 5+ foot piece of tubing, measure and cut the remaining 5 – 12 inch stabilizing legs for your barriers.
Now, put it all together. Press the 90 degree elbows onto your 4 foot horizontals. Press the 12 3/4 inch vertical uprights onto the the other end of the elbows. Press the T’s onto the bottom of the vertical uprights. Press the 12 inch stabilizing legs onto the T’s and press the end caps in the the legs (if you are using end caps). Your result will look like this:
When you set up your new barriers for practice, UCI sets the distance between the barriers at 4 meters. That equates to ~13 feet 1 1/2 inches. Have fun!
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