Barrel Raft

Homemade 55 gallon drum wooden raft.
Solar: $1200
Motor: $750
Lumber: $800
Supplies: $600
Total Cost: $3350

The Barrel Raft Boys are successful in launching our homemade barrel raft. After starting this project two weeks ago, we were ready for the big move. Using a boat trailer, the raft needed to be jacked up to three feet for the trailer to fit underneath. Appears to be floating…lets slide it off the trailer.Let see […]


Instructions on how to frame a homemade barrel raft: 2- 10″ Carriage bolts through corners of exterior frame (2×8’s) We decided to build our raft in 2 sections instead of special ordering 24′ long boards. You can see in the picture below that we spaced out the support braces (2×6’s) to compartmentalize each barrel individually. Notched […]

Barrel Raft Construction – Framing

Solar energy would be efficient and freely charge our devices: Cell phone Laptop Marine radio Small Power Tools Camera The summer should provide plenty of sunshine to power the small technical devices we may carry. Rob found a solar energy distributor in Wisconsin who setup a system geared toward our specifications. This stationary solar panel has the […]

Solar Energy

    This design utilizes a “pontoon style” assembly of the barrels which is the most efficient way to maximize floatation and minimize drag. To offset the weight of our shelter, we would fill the barrels on the opposite end with water. Since each barrel has a maximum buoyancy of ~450lbs. and a 20ft raft would […]

Barrel Raft Design Round 3

After some internet research, I decided to sketch out my idea for the barrel raft. I was reading about flow dynamics and hydrodynamics to see which principles we should include to maximize our flow rate. Flat stern is our powerhouse of motion, we need to maximize the flat surface area increasing the amount of push. Pointed […]

Barrel Raft – Draft