Wheelchair Ramp Construction
Wheelchair ramp construction DYI projects that nearly anyone can build. Here are four DIY wheelchair ramp construction projects:
- Straight wooden ramp construction details
- Sectional wheelchair ramp
- Construction of a landing for a 90-degree ramp or when needed for height
- Flush design ramp construction of a doorway transition ramp to be used when a screen door is present. Adjustable legs of this doorway transition ramp allows the top of the ramp to be perfectly flush with the doorway entrance.
There are three elements to this DYI wheelchair ramp construction:
- standard ramp top bracket
- standard bottom transition
- wood deck which you build
The top bracket and the bottom transition are included in the Wheelchair Ramp Kit. They are specifically designed to allow you to use inexpensive standard 2 x 12 boards. These can be purchased at a home center or lumberyard. The aluminum construction brackets in our kit, create the transition to get the wheelchair or scooter onto and off of the deck, regardless of the slope and height of the steps. Without the top and bottom pieces, lumber is not feasible to be used as a DIY wheelchair ramp construction project. Constructing the deck is explained step-by-step in the instructions enclosed with the kit. The wheelchair ramp construction time is about 2 hours. Anyone that can drill a hole can build a wooden wheelchair ramp that is safe and functional. Wood is quite heavy and any ramp more than 8-feet long will require two people. This ramp construction should be built near its permanent position if this is a one-person project. Complete instructions and materials list is included with each kit. Tools required are an electric drill, hammer, Philips screwdriver, and crescent wrench. Total cost for the ‘kit’ and materials for an 8-10′ ramp is about $200. Longer ramps and sectional ramps, which can be built with our ‘kit’ by a single person to any length, can save you thousands of dollars. Watch our construction video located on the Home page. If you need a long sectional ramp call us to obtain a free document on how to build. We recommend using untreated wood even for outdoor installations. Call us at 913-553-1488 to discuss the rare instances when using ‘treated’ wood may be appropriate.
Ramps can be built to any length by one person when built in sections. The cost of a long aluminum or contractor built ramp is in the thousands of dollars and a long sectional DIY ‘kit’ ramp will be in the hundreds of dollars. While the ramp ‘sections’ can be made any length, the optimum length is 6’ sections for one person to build the entire ramp. Longer sections require additional people due to the weight of the sections. Another consideration is that long spans of a wood ramp require vertical supports about every 6 feet to prevent undesirable deflection. The vertical connector doubles as a vertical support as well as connecting the ramp sections together. So, unless there are unusual circumstances, no additional supports should be required when using 6’ long sections. One of the best features is that the entire ramp can be built off site in a workshop and hauled to the job in a pickup for one man to assemble/install. A single person wanting to build a standard 10’ to 16’ wheelchair ramp may want to consider building the ramp in sections so that he/she does not need to rely on others to assist. It is not uncommon to build sectional ‘kit’ ramps that are longer than 30 feet, especially for mobile homes. A sectional ramp will be safe and rock solid by following our detailed instructions on making the vertical support connectors. A sectional ramp is just a series of straight ramps using the vertical support connectors. And yes, the sectional ‘kit’ ramp can support power chairs and scooters. Call 913-553-1488 or email us and we will send you a free copy of the instructions of how you can build the vertical support connectors. Each wheelchair ramp kit order includes complete step by step construction documentation, including adding handrails. As always, we are here to answer any questions related to your ramp situation.
Landing Wheelchair Ramp Construction
An elevated ‘landing’ is required when a wheelchair ramp needs a 90-degree turn. An ‘Ell’ shaped ramp is composed of two straight ramps on two sides of the elevated landing. The construction of the landing is built ‘in place’ due to it’s weight. Complete wheelchair ramp construction instructions are included with a ‘kit’ order. They include step-by-step instructions with diagrams and photos, a lumber cut list that is cut at the Home Center and a materials list. The only tools needed in addition to the tools to make a straight ramp are:
- sledge hammer or 5-lb maul
- extension cord
- carpenter square
- wood shims
- Skil saw
A DIY Ell-shaped ramp design requires you to build two straight wheelchair ramps, but you only order two top brackets and one bottom bracket. In some situations you will substitute a Flush Fit Top Board instead of the standard ‘top bracket.’ This is if one of the ramp ends is going directly into a doorway threshold with a screen door that swings outward (see Doorway Transition Ramp project below).
The landing is a one-person project since it is built ‘in place.’ Construction time to build this wheelchair ramp requires about 4 hours.
Doorway Threshold Wheelchair Ramp Construction
The Doorway Threshold Ramp accommodates doorway thresholds that have outward swinging doors, like a screen door. Our standard top bracket will not work when a screen door is present. A Threshold Ramp will have a Flush Fit Top Board that will be ordered instead of a standard top bracket. The Flush Fit Top Board has adjustable legs. This allows the end of the ramp facing the doorway to be flush with the doorway threshold. Most doorway threshold ramps are 2-3 feet long. This is to overcome a 3 to 7 inch height where an exterior door leads to a front stoop, back porch or patio. However, the Flush Fit Top Board can be used if a long ramp goes directly into a doorway with a screen door. Side guard rails are optional and are often omitted on short doorway threshold ramps. Wheelchair ramp construction time to build this style is about 1 hour and requires a standard bottom transition bracket and the Flush Fit Top Board.