I've got a small workshop so taking advantage of every square inch of space is very important to me. In that effort I built a lean, mean, lumber-storage rack to hold dimensional lumber and sheet goods. It's adjustable, very sturdy and I'm really pleased with the results. The original idea came from an image I found online. I made some modifications, and (in my opinion) improved on the idea. Here's what I did.
I used 1 and 1/2 sheets of 3/4-in. plywood to build this rack. If you scale back the design, you can build the whole thing with just one sheet of plywood, almost cutting the cost in half! In addition, I purchased 1-1/4-in. screws, wood glue, and 3" lag screws and washers. I used my table saw to cut the following parts to size:
- Lower support: (1) 3- x 96-in.
- Upper support: (1) 5- x 96-in.
- Shelves: (2) 6- x 96-in.
- Vertical Supports: (10) 4- x 79-in.
- More shelves: (1) 17- x 24-in. (leftover from cutting vertical supports)
The upper and lower supports are actually French Cleats with an angled backside. French Cleats are super strong, simple to make and perfect for hanging this lumber rack on a wall. I cut my cleats at a 45 degree angle.
I mitered the all the 6-in.-wide pieces into 6- x 15-in. rectangles. If you look closely in the pictures, you'll see that my top row is shorter than 15 in. I would have preferred to keep all the shelves identical but, I was working around a garage door track.
I set up a jig on my table saw to streamline the process of cutting each shelf.
Here's how I laid out the vertical supports leaving an open area for sheet goods at the bottom and storing dimensional lumber up top.
The vertical supports have two notches cut to accommodate the upper and lower cleats. The upper notch should measure 6" long and the lower notch should measure 4-in. long. The extra inch is to allow for clearance to fit the cleats.
I sandwiched a shelf between two vertical supports, gluing and screwing it in place. Altogether I made 5 vertical supports with 3 shelves apiece.
I used 4 lag screws and washers to mount each horizontal support, and I made sure they went into studs.
After the cleats were in place, I hung the vertical supports, spacing them out as needed.
I'm really pleased with how this lumber rack turned out. It can hold a lot of wood, and it keeps everything off the floor. The vertical supports can be moved side-to-side as needed or even removed should the need arise.
Ethan Hagan runs a website called One Project Closer where he shadows local contractors on actual job sites, and shares their knowledge and expertise on OPC. To see what I mean, check out their latest expert guides like Installing Recessed Lights and Installing a Toilet Like a Pro. Like One Project Closer on Facebook to see what they've been up to.