Works for me #1: Lumber Rack

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Blog entry by Dave Owen posted 02-06-2010 01:37 AM 18516 reads 14 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Works for me series Part 2: One-hand Dust Gate »

I learned a long time ago that there are many ways to do just about anything imaginable. Some work better than others – but the main thing is that they do the job. I’ve decided to write a brief blog from time to time describing something that’s ‘worked for me’ in my shop. If you have a better idea – that’s great! If you can glean something from my idea that you can use, that’s great, too.

I’ve decided to start with my lumber rack. Those of you who’ve taken a look at my workshop will have already seen a picture of it at a distance. Here’s how it looks a little closer.

My shop walls are constructed of drywall on 2” x 4” wood studs. Knowing the lumber I was storing would be pretty heavy at times, I knew it was important to hit as closely as possible to the center of the studs with the supporting lag bolts. To make certain I did, I located the studs as well as I could with a stud-finder – then searched for the stud edges with a 1/8” masonry bit. Once I’d found the center, I patched the small holes in the drywall.

In case you can’t tell from the photo, the dark strip against the wall is 1/4” tempered hardboard. While I knew it wouldn’t help a lot, I wanted something to at least partially distribute the load if a bracket began to fail and pivot. Besides, I thought they looked good.

The photo above shows a close-up of the 1-1/2” x 3” pine vertical ‘standards’, and the horizontal brackets. The center of the bracket is also cut from 1-1/2” pine, and is 1-1/2” high at the outer end, and 6” high where it bears against the face of the standard. The outer two layers of the bracket were cut from 3/4” Sandeply which are glued and screwed to the pine center. I used the screws mainly to serve as a way to clamp while the glue dried – and the Sandeply mostly because at the time it was cheap and didn’t have voids. As you see, the outer pieces extend past each face of the standards, and are fastened to it with through bolts. The brackets extend 16” beyond the face of the standards

I used 3/4” x 8’ MDF shelves so that each shelf could accommodate short pieces as well as long pieces of lumber. I also covered the strips between the standards with the same material to avoid small pieces falling through.

I’ve often had over a thousand pounds of lumber on the rack, and even though it’s been up over five years, it shows no sign of cracking, or yielding.

Works for me!

-- Dave O.

8 comments so far

View Enthalpy's profile


44 posts in 3069 days

#1 posted 02-06-2010 02:03 AM

Too much lumber,,,you need projects!

It matters not who they are, your the one that matters

View GMman's profile


3902 posts in 3724 days

#2 posted 02-06-2010 02:16 AM

Great job on your shelfs, very good way to store your wood.

View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3801 days

#3 posted 02-06-2010 03:04 AM

Hi Dave

Thank you for the info on the lumber rack. When I buy hard wood now I always get more than I need to get a better price break and have stock on hand. I have been stacking it in the basement but need to get it on a rack so I can store more and have more room. Great blog! Thanks for posting.

God Bless

NORV: I thought this was a project? I always thought it was better to over build than under build something like this. Like Dave implied to each his own! LOL

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View Jeison's profile


968 posts in 3135 days

#4 posted 02-06-2010 03:10 AM

That looks damn solid and damn good

-- - Jei, Rockford IL - When in doubt, spray it with WD-40 and wrap it with duct tape. The details will attend to themselves.

View blackcherry's profile


3338 posts in 3850 days

#5 posted 02-06-2010 03:30 AM

Nicely done Dave, great stock to have on hand and a solid looking unit…thanks for sharing…Blkcherry

View a1Jim's profile


117126 posts in 3604 days

#6 posted 02-06-2010 03:32 AM

Good rack

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3849 days

#7 posted 02-06-2010 04:14 AM

That is a nice lumber rack. It looks solid and well built.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Rick  Dennington's profile

Rick Dennington

5912 posts in 3221 days

#8 posted 02-06-2010 05:16 PM

Greetings Dave:.. Stellar job on the lumber rack….. solid…..clean design, and put together to last. If it works for you, then that’s all that matters. I like it. It also looks like you have a few cutting boards glued up on the 3rd shelf, and ready to start processing… is that right, or am I seeing things? Keep on keeping on…... later.

-- " At my age, happy hour is a crap and a nap".....

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