Are you tripping over clamps in your shop? Or worse yet, do you have to search for the right one when you need it? This clamp cart will solve both problems by keeping all of your clamps organized and improve your shop storage. You can buy the materials for about $100, but before you spend any money, check your scrap bin. You might already have everything you need.
The design is based on a common pyramid-style clamp cart that I built years ago. You can complete the cart in a couple of hours, and you’ll be amazed at how much it holds. I loaded mine up with the project-assembly tools I most often use: clamps, bottles of glue and a small compressor.
Here’s how to build the cart:
1. Cut the legs 55 in. long. Make a mark 1/2 in. from each end. Draw a line from the mark to the corner of each leg to establish the miter cut line at each end of the legs (see Detail A). Set your miter saw blade to match the cut line angle (roughly 6 degrees). Miter cut both ends of each leg.
2. The crosspieces fit into 1/4-in.-deep x 3/4-in.-wide dadoes that are cut in the inside faces of each leg. Mark the dadoes (see Detail B). Then cut the dadoes with a router and 3/4-in.-dia. straight bit (photo 1). I guided the router with an easy-to-make crosscut guide (photo 2). Attach two approximately 2 x 12-in. straight scrap pieces together. The angle of the two pieces should match the crosscut angle of the dado that you want to cut. In this case the pieces are perpendicular (90 degrees).
3. Cut the crosspieces to length.
4. Assemble the side frames. Apply glue to the dadoes and clamp the crosspieces between the legs. Secure the pieces with 2-in. wood screws (photo 3). Then attach the side panesl to the bottom, inside edge of the side frames with glue and screws
5. Cut the plywood shelves and top edge pieces. Miter cut the ends of the top edge pieces to 45 degrees.
6. Attach the top edge pieces to the top with glue. Clamp the pieces in place until the glue has dried.
7. Cut the angle iron pieces to length. I used a reciprocating saw and metal-cutting blade to cut the angle iron. I used angle iron because it is very strong and rigid — and because I happened to have a few pieces in my shop. If you don’t have any angle iron, you could substitute pieces of 2x4 lumber for these parts.
8. Connect the sides to the angle iron with 1/4-in.-dia. x 1-in. machine screws (photo 4). If you use 2x4s instead of angle iron, attach the 2x4s under the top and bottom shelf with glue and 1-1/4-in. screws.
9. Attach the casters to the bottom with 1/4-in.-dia. x 1-in. machine screws. Bore a 5/16-in.-dia. pilot hole through the bottom for each screw.
1x4 x 8-ft. pine boards (4)
1/2-in.-thick x 2x4-ft. plywood panel (2) OR 1/2-in.-thick x 4x4-ft. plywood panel (1)
12-ft. x 1-1/2 x 1-1/2-in. perforated angle iron
2-in. wood screws
1/4-dia. x 1-in. machine screws (50)
1/4-in.-dia. flat washers and nuts (50) (used in all connections with machine screws to attach casters and angle iron)
Materials and Cutting List
||3/4 x 3-1/2 x 55 in.
||3/4 x 3-1/2 x 19 in.
||Short top edge pieces
||3/4 x 3/4 x 18 in.
||Long top edge pieces
||3/4 x 3/4 x 20 in.
||1/2 x 18 x 20 in.
||Middle piece, plywood
||1/2 x 18-1/2 x 20 in.
||Bottom pieces, plywood
||1/2 x 20 x 30 in.
||Side Panels, plywood
||1/2 x 11-1/2 x 20 in.