View Full Version : Storage for thin long stock

09-23-2010, 06:16 PM
I have lots of thin long stock (metal, plastic, exotic woods) of various lengths that I need to organize better.

I am looking for ideas for a storage cabinet using PVC pipes to hold some of this stuff.

Anyone have one to show us?

What worked...what did not?

I emphasize that I have various lengths of stock so any storage needs to allow storage while permitting visibility to all stock...storing a 6" piece of brass stock in a 6' PVC tube isn't going to cut it.

Thanks for any suggestions.


09-23-2010, 06:28 PM
A friend of mine solved the problem by building a set of shallow (~ 4" deep) shelves, floor to ceiling, about 4' long, with a raised edge along the front of each shelf so stuff wouldn't roll off. He probably used 1x4 or 1x5 pine for the shelves. Such a setup gives you full visible access to the entire length. The only hard part is finding enough free wall space. He put his behind the door to his shop.

J Tiers
09-23-2010, 10:20 PM
I put mine (shorter, though) in sections of PVC pipe...... the sections go in a shelf space of some heavy-duty clip shelves, which traps them nicely.

Pipe is about the length of the pieces.

For small stuff, 2" or 1.5" pipe, larger gets 4" drain pipe

09-23-2010, 10:45 PM
Got Pictures? ;<)

The devil is in the details.

I was thinking about building a cart with PVC standing vertically in an arraignment like a pipe organ...with the various lengths of PVC holding various lengths of stock.

Likely some shelves at the bottom to hold heavier short cutoffs to lower the COG of the structure.

I also have stock in excess of 8' long...so that will likely go horizontal in an arraignment as been mentioned.

The short odds and ends...gallon coffee cans on the cart/shelves.

FWIW...on occasion I get too much stock and have to thin the herd. Usually the odd ball extrusion stuff goes first..


J Tiers
09-23-2010, 11:06 PM
This is the only one I can get to... the shop is all moved around and under tarps waiting for some joist replacement work. It's been waiting for 8 weeks +..... before this it was under-floor plumbing work......

All the round stock has numbers stamped, and I have matching numbered coupons from each to test hardening etc.....


09-23-2010, 11:13 PM
I just went through this the other day. My solution, which did not get vetoed :) was to either rip some 2x4s in half, or buy 2x2s, then drill a series of evenly spaced holes along the length of them, suitably sized to poke short lengths of emt into. That's the thinwall pipe that electricians use to run wire in. The idea was to put a slight upward angle on the holes, then mount these matching every stud in a suitable wall. That gives you support every 16 inches. Cut the tubing to whatever length suits, and poke them into holes at whatever spacing suits. Nothing stops you from laying a shelf across two or more of these pegs to store short pieces of stock. Adding a back edge on the shelves would prevent things from falling off the back.

Paint the wood up so it looks ok, maybe even chamfer the two front edges to give it a better look.

This is a drill press job. Either put a tilt on the table, or make up a wedge so you can set an angle to drill the holes at. Use a speedbit for the holes, and set the depth stop on the drill press to get them all evenly deep. Do a test on some scrap first to make sure that the pegs are going to sit level, or just slightly upwards, when they are fully inserted into the holes. You don't want much upward angle at all- maybe 1/4 inch per foot or so. Too much and it looks funny.

To lay out the holes, get some of that strapping that plumbers use, the stuff that's a steel strip full of holes. Mark a starting hole near the bottom of the 2x2s, then put a screw in that spot to hold one end of the strapping. Unroll it nicely so it lays flat along the 2x2, then get a bit of stretch on it and put a screw in at the top. Add one or two screws in between to keep the strip straight. Determine what peg spacing you want to use, then use a marker to mark the holes in the strapping. After that you can either pre-drill some dimples to guide the speedbit, or just mark the spots. Move the strapping to another 2x2 and do again, repeat till done. Start a pot of coffee, then start drilling- I would pre-drill dimples myself, just to ensure that the hole layout is about as even as you could reasonably get it. Pick a drill bit for this that's a close fit to the holes in the strapping. It won't take long with a cordless drill to get a series of pilot holes in each 2x2.

Probably the smallest diameter emt is what you'd need. Cut the lengths with a pipe cutter and you probably won't need any other prep.

Pick a wall, find the studs, screw the 2x2s on, two end ones first. Place a peg in each one at the same height and stretch a string tightly across. Use that as a guide for placing all the other 2x2s so your pegs will all be lined up.

Take pictures of your nice clean shop afterwards- :) Some of us need a little prodding now and then to hunker down and get the place neatened up-

By the way, if you don't have a speed bit (or spade bit as they're sometimes called) of a suitable size, you can always pick one that's larger than what you need and grind the two edges to get to the custom size that's perfect for the emt tubing. I measured the tubing I have and it's .716 OD. That's larger than 11/16, so either modify a 3/4 inch speed bit, or just drill the holes with it as is.

Forrest Addy
09-24-2010, 03:08 AM
Plastic gutter. You get end and top access.

J Tiers
09-24-2010, 08:31 AM
Plastic gutter. You get end and top access.

A lot of that stuff is not very sturdy..... DAMHIKT