Billy is a long-time skateboarder who shares tips on learning how to skateboard, building skate obstacles, and more.
What Is a Micro Ramp?
A micro ramp consists of two smaller-than-average-sized quarter pipes, 2 feet high by 4 feet wide, facing each other. This is the kind I built for myself, and I'm going to show you how to build your own for your garage or basement.
In order to make the process really easy to follow, I've broken down the steps and included pictures, videos, and my own experience. I'll also tell you where to find the materials you need, and I'll share tips on how to make a great set of ramps.
Note: You can build your pipes to be any size you want, but note that this tutorial and materials list are meant for 2 foot by 4 foot quarters.
Indoors or Outdoors?
This micro ramp should be built indoors where it's safe from the elements. But if it is going to be outside, you should protect it as best you can. Pressure-treated lumber, some paint, and a tarp should help.
If you go that route, however, be careful. Working with treated lumber can be dangerous because of the poisonous chemicals used to treat the wood.
In This Article
Below, you'll find detailed information and instructions for each of these topics:
- Which supplies and tools you'll need for the job.
- How to plan the cuts for your quarter pipe sides and deck on just two pieces of plywood.
- How to draw and cut the transition onto your plywood.
- A list of all the materials you will need to measure and cut.
- How to frame the ramp.
- Information about coping—where to buy and how to cut, drill, and attach it.
- How to cover the ramp in layers of ply and masonite.
- Building steel thresholds.
Step 1: Gather Your Tools
Here's what you will need:
- Tape measure
- Pencil or pen
- Chalk line
- Cordless drill
- Phillips bit
- Assorted drill bits
- Circular saw
Step 2: Gather Your Materials
Where to Buy Supplies
- Home Depot (or any home improvement store): These stores will carry the wood and hardware that you need. If you live in the United States, you might find the steel here, too.
- Metal Supermarkets: They will have the coping and threshold material you need for this set of ramps.
Materials: Lumber, Plywood, and Steel
|Lumber||Plywood / Masonite||Steel|
Qty. • Type • Size
Qty. • Type • Size
11 • 2x4s • 3'10½"
2 • 3/4" Ply • (see photo)
1 • Pipe • 4'
1 • 3/4" Ply • 2' x 4'
1 • Steel Plate • 4'
1 • 3/8" Ply • 3'9" x 4'0
1 • 3/8" Ply • 4'0 x 4'1"
1 • 1/4" Masonite • 3'6" x 4'
Step 3: Lay Out the Plywood
The drawing below illustrates how to cut the quarter pipe sides and deck from a single sheet of 3/4" plywood.
If you're building two of these micro quarter pipes like I did, then you can get both deck pieces out of one piece of plywood.
You will need another sheet for your other two sides.
After all your side pieces are cut, what's left from your 3/4" plywood is a 2'×8' piece that could be used to build a skate ledge or grind box.
Before cutting anything though, get the hard part out of the way first by drawing the transition.
Step 4: Draw the Transition
There are different ways of doing this, but I'll show you the way I was taught to draw transition.
- Grab an 8' long 2×4 and mark two lines.
- Three inches from one end, mark a line. In the middle of this line, drill a 3/8" hole (approximately the diameter of a pencil).
- Measure out the distance of the transition radius, which is 5'6" from the first line you just drew (5'9" from the same end). The center of this second line is where you're going to place a screw, but don't go all the way through the 2×4 just yet.
- Take two pieces of 3/4" plywood and lay them down next to each other so they are touching (refer to the drawing below).
- Using the 2×4 you made earlier, screw down the screw into the 3/4" plywood (refer to the drawing below).
- Place a pencil in the 3/8" hole you drilled and draw a radius. Use the 2×4 as a guide for your pencil until you can visibly see the transition radius. Next, measure and mark the height and length of the bottom: height: 1'11¼"; length: 5'1¼".
- Draw the spot for the coping and bottom details (refer to drawing below).
- Measure 2' from the back for the deck and 7/8" down for the coping.
Note: This is the measurement if you're using a two-inch diameter piece of coping. The drawing below shows a measurement of 1¼" but if you are building a ramp like mine, only cut down 7/8".
Step 5: Cut the Transition
- Using a jigsaw and following the lines you drew, cut out your first transition piece. Keep things neat, because the deck for this quarter pipe will also come from this piece of 3/4" plywood.
- Cut out your first transition piece and then use it as a template to trace onto the plywood and cut out the other side.
- After the sides and deck are cut, you can begin cutting 2×4s, or continue with the remaining plywood pieces that will be used to cover the ramp.
Step 6: Frame the Ramp
After you've cut the plywood and lumber, you can begin framing the ramp.
- Start by attaching the bottom and top 2×4s.
- Make marks where the remaining pieces will go and then continue framing the deck and riding surface. Most 2×4s will be 8" on center (refer to drawing below for exceptions).
Step 7: Cut and Drill the Steel Coping
The coping size I choose for these ramps was 2" outside diameter with a 1/8" thick wall.
Tips on Cutting and Drilling Steel
- If you buy your steel at the right place (e.g., Home Depot or Metal Supermarkets), they will cut your steel for you. All my steel pieces were cut for me. The only thing I had to do myself was drill holes in the coping and threshold.
- If you don't have the proper tools, my advice is to bring your steel pieces to a steel fabrication shop in your area. Or if you know someone who works in a place like that, have them help you out.
- If you are going to attach the coping the way I've done it, there are going to be six holes in each piece of coping. That is a lot of drilling. To make this easier on myself, I gave my buddy the pieces so he could use the drill press at his work.
- It's also possible to use a cordless drill with a couple of good drill bits to get the job done.
Step 8: Attach the Coping
The way I'm attaching the coping is by using screws.
- Marking the pipe about 3" in from each end and then once in the middle.
- Drill a 3/8" hole on the outside of the pipe and a 3/16" hole on the inside.
- After your holes are drilled, place the coping in the spot you made earlier. Feed a screw through the outside 3/8" hole and place it into the 3/16" inner hole.
- With a cordless drill, screw it down and go to the next hole.
Note: If you're wondering about the holes interfering with your skating, don't worry. As long as the outside hole is no larger than 3/8", you will be fine.
Step 9: Cover the Ramp
- Start with the deck. Grab one of your 3/4" plywood pieces and screw it into the top of the ramp, spacing your screws about a foot apart.
- Use a tape measure and mark where each screw will go. This way you keep it neat, and it looks better that way.
- Now it's time to cover the riding surface. Grab your first sheet of 3/8" plywood. If you already cut this sheet, you should have two pieces—a first and second layer (first layer is 3'10" × 4'; second layer is 4' × 4'2").
- Attaching these pieces of plywood to the ramp is no easy task. To make it easier, you need to soak your plywood sheets with water before attempting to attach them to the ramp. We did that for these quarter pipes. It probably wasn't enough though, because it was still tough to bend the sheets.
- Start at the top of the ramp and place the screws about a foot apart as you work your way to the bottom. Be careful to hit the studs when you're attaching your sheets.
Step 10: Attach Second Layer and Masonite
- After attaching the first piece of 3/8" plywood, move on to the next. Take the piece of 4'0" x 4'2" and place it over the top the previous layer.
- Again, make sure to screw into the 2×4s and not on top other screws. Use a chalk line to mark where the studs are located.
- With both pieces of the 3/8" sheets attached, grab your piece of 1/4" masonite, which will be your third and final layer (masonite should be 3'6" by 4'0").
- Mark out where each screw will be and then use a countersink bit or 3/8" drill bit to countersink each hole so the screws will be flush with the surface of the ramp.
- Once the masonite is on, you can check the coping placement. If it's not to your liking, you can make some adjustments.
Step 11: Build the Steel Threshold
- If built properly, you should have about 1 inch between the masonite and the ground. This is where you place the 4' x 1', 3/16" thick sheet metal.
- Drill a 3/16" hole approximately 2 inches in from each end and one in the middle.
- After all the holes are drilled, you are going to want to countersink each by using a countersink bit. You can also use a 3/8" drill bit. The purpose is to drill down just enough so the screw heads are flush. This way you won't snag a screw if you fall.
Skate and Create
Well, there you have it, a brand-new micro ramp!
Leave a comment below. Let me know of any issues you have, questions, or concerns. Good luck and happy building!
© 2014 Billy
Israel on July 18, 2020:
THANKYOU. This was such a helpful tutorial, and helped me make a 2foot x 6foot wide quarter pipe for me and my son. Thanks again!! :D
Jason Walloschek on June 19, 2020:
Hey ANYONE want to share what length they cut their 3/8" ply? I'm tempted to go with the shorter cuts so that the metal threshold sits high enough to attach through the 3/8" ply to the 2x4.. input??
m on June 16, 2020:
Jason Walloschek on June 12, 2020:
Hey thanks for the ramp plans. I've got all the materials and want to start cutting this weekend. Quick question about the 3/8" ply dimensions. You have two different measurements- 3'9" and 4'1" in the parts list and then 3'10" and 4'2" in the build description. Which ones should I use?
Shawn on April 24, 2020:
3/16” sheet metal is HEAVY and thick. Probably overkill for this ramp. I bought a piece and now need to sell it. Ended up buying 16g sheet metal which is about 1/8” and tons lighter. Looks like all the thresholds at skateparks
Hunter smith on April 17, 2020:
Hey, I’m planing on using this plan but am confused on the section about covering the ramp. I know you use 2 pieces of 3/8 ply but how do you attach them with the different dimensions? Thanks
Billy (author) from CANADA on March 31, 2020:
Between ramps approx. 10-12 feet. It's not bad but if you can make more room by shortening the decks, you should go for it.
Hawkes on March 29, 2020:
Hey - just checking out your plans & looking to make something similar -
Can you tell me how much space you have between the ramps? I have 17’-1” to play with & wondering about shortening the decks from 2’ to give a bit more flat??
Joshua Merchant on October 13, 2019:
Materials cost me $190 after taxes at Home Depot. That is including the 2" black pipe. Still cheaper than a manufactured one, and I get to spend time with my son building it, which is priceless. Thanks!
Jude on August 15, 2019:
Great ramp plan...easy to follow along!
Joel on May 25, 2019:
I just built one slightly smaller in width but I spent about $130
ScooterPro on November 27, 2017:
How much would this cost?
how much on February 02, 2017: