Saturday, March 22, 2014

The Wood Rack

Finished Wood Rack
For no real good reason other than “Ya gotta start someplace”, I began the workshop reconstruction process with the new wood rack. The portion of the existing bench top – that is to become the “Assembly Bench” was removed to make room for the wood rack.

Since I used a form of cantilevering to hold up the bench, there were already some holes in the cement blocks for toggle bolts.  (I'll discuss the cantilevering part in more detail when I get to the bench.)  I took advantage of these holes and added a few more, higher up on the wall.  By far this was the most strenuous part of the installation.  I didn’t have a concrete bit quite large enough to accommodate the “wings” of the toggle bolts.  Hence, I had to first drill and then use a cold chisel to enlarge the hole.  On the plus side, by using the chisel I could fashion a square hole that was ideal for the toggle bolt “wings” but if I had it to do again I’d run down to Home Depot (or wherever) and get a bigger drill bit and skip all of the heavy "stone mason" work :-)

As you can see from the overall photo, I cut three 2x4’s to length and mounted them flat to the wall with toggle bolts.  Once they were up and plumb, I attached three more 2x4’s along the edges of the first three 2x4’s using 3” deck screws.  (What did we ever do before deck screws and power screwdrivers came along???).  

I had a bunch of short 2x6 chunks that I converted to slightly tapered shelf hangers.  I used 3” lag bolts to tie them in through the edge mounted 2x4’s.  I don’t think it’s coming apart anytime soon :-)

I took great care to ensure that all of the hangers were level front-to-back and side-to-side – it is considered very bad form to put a piece of wood on a rack and have it slide off :-)   

I then cut up a piece of ½” plywood for the shelves. The plywood sheet was only a partial sheet and wasn’t all that “pretty”, but it was both “free” and “available” - a good combination :-)

So that’s about it.  The rack is maybe not as big as I would have liked, but the available space is what it is.  Also, I didn't want to crowd the corner too much because in the summertime condensation can get trapped back there...much better to allow the air to circulate. 

I am sure that there are better designs and certainly better “looking” designs but this one was pretty cheap to construct.   As it is turning out, this woodshop project has had the secondary advantage clearing out some of the odds and ends of wood that were cluttering up the garage.

More to come... Stay tuned...

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