February 28, 2012

Rafter panel storage in workshop shed
Photo by Jim Ruen
A 2- by 4-foot plywood panel hangs from a 1/2-inch pipe secured to roof rafters, as an interim step toward handy tool storage.

Last week, I told you how I devised a plan to use the area between the rafters in my compact workshop for storage. Instead of permanent hinges, I opted for hanging a pipe that would retain the panels, yet allow them to tip down to display tools. Not securing the panels would also allow me to more easily remove them if desired.

I secured 24-inch-long, 3/4- by 1-inch pieces of trim from a recent oak-flooring installation as bumpers to the ends of the four panels. With the bumpers in place, the panels fit perfectly over the pipe, and when lowered to the surface of the workbench below, they’re held securely in place. When lifted back into place, the panel ends rest against the top plate of the shed wall.

My plan was to secure the panels with a latch, magnets or some other system at the ridgepole. After spending some time looking through alternatives and trying out one draw clasp, I settled on a simple alternative. Experimenting with several pieces of right-angle steel strap I had picked up for reinforcing corners, I found I could screw them loosely to the ridgepole. When I lifted the panels to their closed positions, they easily swiveled into place. I fixed one up with wood handles, and when I get a chance, I’ll do the same with the others. For now, they’re fine as is.

I have yet to install the tools. I plan to use Velcro strapping for some and wood retainers for others. Then I’ll outline the tools stored behind a panel on its exposed side to make it easy for my wife (and me) to find needed tools without dropping every panel.

Those are all adventures for another day as I move a little bit closer to a ship-shape shop.

<< More Shop Talk >>


Subscribe now

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Next Up

You Should Also read: