Lumber Rack Ideas, Woodworking Variety

Rack ’em Up

Rob asked, “If you were making an over-the-top lumber storage cart, what would you build into it?” He seemed particularly interested in any adjunct that would provide an excuse to add a laser. You responded with a flood of suggestions, both serious and curious. Here is a representative sampling. – Editor

“On the side of the lumber cart opposite the panel saw, include a power miter saw. If you buy the right one, it comes with a laser.” – Gary Denis

“Take an old tape from a broken tape measure and affix it to your wood rack. This will allow you to hold any scrap stock along the tape, then note the length of the stock on the end of the board with a Sharpie® marker. All of the wood in my rack has the length in inches marked on the bottom. It sure makes finding the right piece of scrap easy.” – Mike King

“I would include a measuring tape so you can quickly check a board for size, and also include other tools, such as a scribe, pencil, square and so on. Since this rack will be mobile, why not mount a floodlight to the top so you can have added light when needed? If you have a central vacuum system, add a plug-in port.” – Joe Fehrenbacher

“Make the bottom of the panel cutting station about 18 inches off the ground. That puts the top somewhere around eye level and the bend required to get to the bottom of the cut is fairly easy. Make all casters swivel so that it could be rotated on its axis to access the back side.” – Larry Giust

“Don’t even think about home center casters. Get some of the red ones with urethane tires. With five sheets of three-quarter plywood on the cart, you’re over 400 pounds. I know that it hurts to spend $80 or so for a set of casters, but the result is that the cart rolls about easily.” – Rich Flynn

“You don’t want it to move as you’re loading three quarter inch plywood into it, so the casters need some good brakes.” – Ralph J. Shields

“The front casters should be lockable, for safety. I would also suggest some heavy-duty leg levelers.” – Peter Bogoyevitch

“Even really cool casters allow dust to hide. Why not suspend your rack from rails in the ceiling? Make sure you have at least three inches of clearance so your Roomba® can clean up underneath.” – Dave Lewis

“I’d want mine to tilt horizontally to ease off-loading from my pickup bed. That way, you can slide the sheet goods from the pickup to the lumber rack with little or no lifting.” – Ken Hessedal

“I, too, am planning a wood storage cart. I had thought about trying to incorporate a project board on the back side, but couldn’t come up with a design that I liked.” – Bill Butler

“Use the side opposite the panel saw as a clamp rack, and add cup holders, at least one to each end. They hold water bottles or small jars of finish, screws, nails, wire nuts and so on.” – Stephen Garanin

“How about attaching some sort of drill, or an inexpensive doweling jig, to the panel saw brackets so you can drill attachment holes while the sheets are still on the rack?” – Thomas Williams

Naturally, there were some suggestions that were clearly more humorous than serious. At least we think they were. – Editor

“A roll-around lumber rack is a perfect place for a coffee pot.” – David M. Williams

“Include a flat panel TV, a La-Z-Boy® and a bar, and you have it all.” – Papa Slots

“Don’t forget to include the skid steer mechanism for moving the rack around the shop. I’m thinking Cummins Turbo Diesel and maybe a Bobcat hydraulic drive system. And you probably should throw in an electric option in the plans for the ecologically minded.” – David Young

“Add a remote control electric drive to the wheels. Otherwise, it might be so heavy you’ll have a tough time pushing it yourself.” – Paul Beasley

One reader even suggested a way to avoid building the rack entirely. – Editor

“About the time I finished my shop, I was working on building a lumber rack on wheels when I got word that the office I worked in was closing. It was my job to get rid of the unwanted computer racks. I brought two of them home and converted one into a lumber rack. It was already designed to hold considerable weight, had decent casters, and the design made it easy to install adjustable shelves.” – Brad Heaton

Not Just Furniture Makers

“Woodworking also consists of scroll sawing, intarsia and lathe work, yet I never see any mention of any of it in your columns. How about giving us guys a break, too?” – Jim Palmer

Actually, we’ve showcased quite a few turners in past issues of our Today’s Woodworker segment, as well as folks who do scroll saw and intarsia work, and we will continue to add them to the mix in the future. If you know of anyone whose work is just crying out to be shown, or someone with an interesting story, please let us know and direct us to his or her website. We’re always grateful for such suggestions. – Editor

Toy Box

“Thanks for a great online magazine. I very much enjoy the ‘Reader’s Project Gallery’ with its many inventive project ideas. The range of the included projects, from novice to expert, allows all your members to benefit. I especially liked the toy box design by Ernie Silva in eZine Issue 226.” – Michael Klebes

Posted in: