Build Custom Shelving

  • DIY, handyman magazine, renovation, man with dog in front of custom shelving in garage
  • DIY, handyman magazine, renovation, messy garage before organising
Create order from chaos and keep the workshop neat with custom-built shelving for all DIY needs. 
 
Like a lot of busy family blokes Joe Jensen had a garage bursting with stuff but he could never find what he was looking for. Desperate for a solution, he set aside a weekend to build a wall of storage for about $300. 
 
‘I planned to store everything in a series of different-sized bins and build the shelving to fit them,’ he says.
 
For the clean up Joe enlisted the help of the family. ‘We sorted the stuff to keep into categories, which allowed me to work out how many and what size bins I needed.’
 
Joe chose a combination of large bins and smaller snaplock containers with two for each shelf.
 
‘To avoid stacking the small bins I hung the top one on cleats using a spacer to get the measurements right.’
 
The frames are joined with plywood as shelves. Floor level is for bigger tools and there’s a solid top for more storage. 
 
‘I painted the pieces before putting them together for easy assembly.’
 
To assemble the frames Joe cut all the pieces to length and marked where the rail was to be secured to each leg, and the same for the cleats. 
 
‘I worked on a sheet of plywood to keep each frame square, using the edges of the plywood to line up and adjust. With the frame up I enlisted another pair of hands to secure the shelves,’ says Joe.
 
He attached the shelves from the base up and the finished structure was secured to the wall studs with 100mm x 10g timber screws.
 
‘I left the end closest to the garage door open to add a simple workbench with pegboard backing to provide hanging space for my hand tools and other bits and pieces.’
 

Assembling the shelves

The shelving was built using 90 x 45mm timber for the legs with 42 x 42mm rails secured using 65mm x 10g screws.

The 42 x 19mm cleats for hanging the snaplock containers were secured to the legs using 40mm x 8g timber screws. 

Step 1. Assemble the frames

Assemble the frames using the factory edges of a plywood sheet to line up and adjust the legs and rails as they’re secured.

Step 2. Attach the shelves

Attach the shelves with a helper holding the frames. If working alone, lean a frame against the wall and brace the other with clamps while you attach the first shelf.

Step 3. Secure the shelves

Secure to the wall through the top rail using 125mm x 14g screws into every second wall stud.
TIP Cut or shim the legs if the floor slopes or is uneven.

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