How to Make PVC Track Hurdles
Not all hurdles are created equal. Equal in height, that is. There are five different heights that hurdles can be set at: 42, 39, 36, 33, and 30 inches. This corresponds to the Open, College High, High School High, Intermediate, Women's and Lows classes. For practicing at the local park, you can make inexpensive, adjustable hurdles out of PVC pipe. They can be twisted together in just a few minutes and dissembled when finished.
Use a tape measure to measure the following lengths on a 10-foot piece of 1/2 inch PVC pipe -- You will need almost 16 feet of pipe to make one hurdle. PVC pipe is usually sold in 10 foot lengths – 1 by 40 inches, 8 by 3 inches, 2 by 29 inches, 2 by 18 inches, and 2 by 2 inches. Use a fine tip marker to mark the lengths.
Use a hack saw to cut the pieces of pipe.
Gather the following ½-inch PVC pipe connectors: two T connectors, two 90-degree elbow connectors and eight straight connectors.
Assemble a 30-inch hurdle by twisting an 18-inch piece of pipe into one of the straight ends of the T connectors. Repeat for the other T connector. Twist a 2-inch piece of pipe into the other straight end of the T connector. This forms the base for each side of the hurdle.
Twist a 29-inch piece of pipe into the T fitting – the one in the middle – of each T connector. This forms the upright of each side of the hurdle.
Twist a 90-degree elbow onto each end of the 40-inch piece of pipe. This forms the top crossbar of the hurdle. Push the open ends of the crossbar elbows onto the ends of the uprights. You now have a complete 30-inch hurdle.
Make a taller hurdle by pulling the elbows and 40-inch piece of pipe from the uprights of the hurdle. Add a straight connector and a 3-inch piece of pipe to each upright, install the crossbar and elbows to make a 33-inch hurdle. Make taller hurdles by installing more straight connectors and 3-inch pieces of pipe to make 36-, 39-, and 42-inch hurdles.
Robert Bayly, based in Apple Valley, California, began writing in 2010, his "how to" articles can be found on eHow. With more than 15 years in the auto industry, Bayly has been an auto and diesel mechanic, service writer and parts manager. He received certificates from Pontiac (parts system), Cat Diesel (engine service), Saab and Fiat (parts- warranty system).