Freestanding Lumber Rack

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Forum topic by Jeremy Greiner posted 02-15-2012 04:26 AM 10495 views 1 time favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Jeremy Greiner

568 posts in 3821 days

02-15-2012 04:26 AM

A lot of lumber racks are mounted directly to walls that works great for those that have studded walls. I have cinder block walls in my garage and I’d prefer not to plow into them with a bunch of tapcons if I can help it. Currently my lumber rack is mounted to the wall it’s one of those portamate racks (really worth the 30$ I got it on sale for quick and simple lumber storage) but I’d like to expand it and increase some sheet good storage so here is what I’ve come up with.

Some details:
It’s about 5’10’’ high and about 4’ 7’’ wide, the shelves can hold the 48’’ x 32’’ sheets of plywood I get. My mini cooper can’t hold anything larger than that so usually I’ll get a sheet of plywood cut into 3 pieces to fit in my car. I like to keep 2 sheets handy for whatever reason. This will hold up to 6 full sheets (18 pieces) of 3/4’’ and 3 full sheets (9 pieces) of half inch combined .. or any combination of MDF, hardboard etc.. I want to throw in there. The bottom shelf is empty I’ll most likely store tools or something there I dunno but the idea of bending over to lug out a 3/4’’ sheet of plywood wasn’t appealing.

The rods/bars will hold lumber and will be 1/2’’ or 3/4’’ I’m not sure yet. I know 3/4’’ would be stronger but not sure if it’s overkill or what. I’m also thinking about covering the pipes with PVC or something I’ve heard they can stain the wood but I have no idea on that.

The idea is the pipe goes through the center and into the wood behind it about an inch and a half, this should produce a pretty strong shelf I would think since it has quiet a bit of leverage. The idea is the outside lumber rack will hold readily available woods, while the inside will hold some wood for long time storage (extra stock or material I don’t use often etc..)

Here is a concept picture of what it could look like fully loaded.

To be honest I have no idea when I’ll be start work on this project, I’m like in the middle of a few things but as I was digging through my lumber I was like “man I wish this was easier” .. and so I drew this up in sketchup.

I’d love to hear some ideas suggestions or critisism all thoughts are welcome :)


-- Easy to use end grain cutting board designer:

8 replies so far

View ChrisK's profile


2053 posts in 4131 days

#1 posted 02-16-2012 02:19 PM


Looks like a good start.

1/2” iron pipe will be plenty strong on the side where both ends of the pipe are supported by the vertical 2x. The cantilevered side will sag a little. It will not break with just wood on it, but you might need to put a piece to act as a lip to keep the boards from sliding off. Black iron will leave a smudge or stain on the wood. A layer of duct tape will work, the PVC will work to.

-- Chris K

View MrRon's profile


6005 posts in 4293 days

#2 posted 02-19-2012 09:35 PM

Looks like a plan.

View DIYaholic's profile


19921 posts in 3724 days

#3 posted 02-19-2012 11:14 PM

I like it. Looks well thought out! Can’t wait to see it completed & stoced with lumber!!!

I recently completed my Lumber Rack! I used 1/2” black Pipe and covered the pipe with pipe insulation. Holes are drilled @ 2 degrees angle, every 6” for adjustability. I also made additional pipes for future use.

A Stacked Rack

Completed Rack

Rack w/ Pipe Insulation

Top Support:

Bottom Support

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procrastination a bad thing?

View ChrisMc45's profile


117 posts in 3909 days

#4 posted 03-29-2012 12:18 AM

I have had good luck with 3/4” electrical conduit (actually 0.71”) in 3/4” holes. The depth to date is ~1-foot, the rack holds stickered stacks for years. The 5-degree angle is a wash. DIYholic’s idea of using pipe insulation is a good one, I must read the same magazines; i have used the grey and the pink, no problems. I am on vertical 2×4 lumber attached to the wall with 3/4” holes every foot on 32” (every other stud) supports.

What is the mass of ~3-cubic-feet (if I fill the rack totally, 1×1x2.5 feet) of lumber on each piece of conduit? It is holding up…

View JoshOne's profile


54 posts in 3740 days

#5 posted 05-30-2012 01:47 AM

This is a super old thread but I thought i’d toss my solution in:
it has 750+ bf of walnut and cherry on it now, it’s holding up fine.

-- "The lyf so short, the craft so long to lerne"

View Sarit's profile


552 posts in 4189 days

#6 posted 05-30-2012 05:01 AM

I think that the plywood section of the original poster looks like it will sag when fully loaded.
Did you ever build this?

View Gshepherd's profile


1727 posts in 3251 days

#7 posted 05-30-2012 09:27 AM

Try making it like the double sided cantilever rack…. I made on with 2×4 and 2×6 12 ft long could easily store 2,000 bf.. kept heavy lumber on bottom of course…. I might have a old pic of it if your interested…...look at it from the side shape like a triangle….

-- What we do in life will Echo through Eternity........

View chelseacaldwell's profile


2 posts in 1902 days

#8 posted 01-25-2016 12:37 AM

A good architecture for garage, storage room or a even for store shelves…

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