Storage Solutions:
Folding Lumber Racks

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Storage Solutions: Folding Lumber Racks

Full Size Rack Put lumber storage where you need it when you need it with these folding lumber racks. They’re simple, sturdy, and stow away when not in use.

When you’re building projects from wood, one of the first things you do is go buy a batch of boards. When you get them home, they often end up stacked on the floor, where they can get damaged and are always in the way. A lumber storage rack would be the perfect solution, but not everyone has space for one.

This pair of plywood lumber racks makes it possible to safely store and organize your boards thanks to multiple levels and broad bases that keep the racks stable. Unlike most racks that take up space whether they’re in use or not, though, these racks are hinged so they fold up and store away when they’re not in use.


Simple Construction
Cut the Leaves to Shape Image 1 Take a look at the illustration at right (just click on the magnifying glass to open a larger version) and you can see that the racks are made from ordinary 3/4" plywood that you can pick up inexpensively in any home center. By creatively laying out the shape of each “leaf” in the rack, you can cut all four pieces from a single sheet.

In addition to the plywood, all you’ll need is a handful of hardware: three pairs of hinges, screws to mount them, and two sets of furniture glides (8 glides in total).

For tools, a drill and a jigsaw will do the trick.

Start by cutting the plywood down the center. Then use the pattern to lay out a pair of leaves on each half sheet. Now it’s time to cut out each leaf.


Cut the Leaves to Shape
Cut the Leaves to Shape Image 1 Cutting all of those inside corners with a jigsaw can be tricky. To make it easier, drill starter holes in these inside corners first, as shown.

To get the cleanest cuts, use a quality blade that’s designated for “fine” or “smooth” cuts. You have to cut more slowly with these blades, but the results are worth it, as you can see in the photo at right. Have several blades on hand, and swap blades when they start getting dull.

After cutting out each leaf, sand the cuts with medium-grit sandpaper (100- or 120-grit should do) to smooth the surfaces and to ease the sharp edges.


Cut the Leaves to Shape
Basic 3" butt hinges connect each pair of leaves. Locate hinges 3" from the top and bottom of each leaf, and then add a third hinge centered along the back edge. Finally, add simple nail-on glides to keep the racks off the floor and add stability.
Assemble Each Rack Image 1 Assemble Each Rack 2

Cut the Leaves to Shape
Speaking of stability, when you’re using the racks, be sure to spread the leaves apart until each rack is stable and sits solidly on the floor. Then you can load them starting at the bottom and working upward. This keeps the majority of the weight closest to the bottom of the racks.

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From Kreg and Woodsmith Magazine
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2013 August Home Publishing

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