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Garage organization

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Hi- my garage has gotten out of hand, parts piled there, tools piled here, need to get it organized. Does anyone have suggestions about cabinets, workbenches, etc.? I don't want to build my own, want to buy something and install, have been to Lowes and Home Depot and see all sorts from metal to plastic to fiberboard.

thoughts on the best way to go? thanks David Coco

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Many of us have this problem. I have several dedicated cabinet shelves for each car I have. Although this doesn't always work for large parts, it keeps the smaller parts segregated.

Invest in a good tool box with lots of drawers and label each drawer with what goes in it. Large drawers are labeled by task... painting tools, lube guns, etc.... small ones are for sockets, end wrenches, screw drivers, etc....

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dave i found that if your wife remodels your kitchen the old cabinets work great for parts,and an old non-working fridge is a great place to keep chemicals i.e brake fluid,oil,carb cleaner

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David

I went to Lowes and bought several kitchen style overhead and base cabinets with counter tops. It gave me alot of storage and very good work surfaces. If you are on a budget then the suggestion about used kitchen cabinets might be the way to go.

Good Luck

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Hi- not really so much on a budget, just wondering what commercially available garage systems work, but economically. I don't want to spend thousands upon thousands of dollars, but would buy good stuff if priced reasonably. I understand the get by philosophy, but I'm looking for the next step. If someone here has gone to Lowes or such, and likes the cabinets, etc. , let me know what it is you like. Thanks David C.

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Jay Leno told about a Buick collector who had a unique approach to the garage problem. His wife hated old cars and parts around the house so he bought another house a few blocks away.

Car storage and repair in the attached 2 car garage. Books and parts storage in the bedrooms. Small items in the kitchen cupboard. Living room for watching TV and drinking beer and lined with shelves for toy, model, trophy and memento display.

Problem solved.

Edited by Rusty_OToole (see edit history)

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I can't afford to do this myself, but I would suggest you check out this link as well as checking your local yellow pages for "garage organizers".

http://www.carguygarage.com/

You can probably find several other sites worth checking out by googling "garage storage" or "garage cabinets".

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Nice cabinets, thanks for the link, was discussing this with a friend of mine who is into cars too, he said, well, ya know, $5000 for the cabinets and $10,000 for the garage, would rather buy another car and worry about it later!

I REALLY like the idea of buying another house in the subdivision for storage, what a great idea! With my luck, wife would think I was having an affair with someone who lived there....no, no, honey, it's just old PARTS for goodness sake!

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Hi- my garage has gotten out of hand, parts piled there, tools piled here, need to get it organized. Does anyone have suggestions about cabinets, workbenches, etc.? I don't want to build my own, want to buy something and install, have been to Lowes and Home Depot and see all sorts from metal to plastic to fiberboard.

thoughts on the best way to go? thanks David Coco

Dave,

You are not alone, mine is out of hand too. I have been looking at whats available for a year or so while planning the most effective route. I have found Sears offers one of the best selections of asthetically pleasing and functional options in varying price ranges.

Shop for Garage Storage Collections in the Tools department of Sears.com

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You may want to try a cabinet shop sometimes they have cabinets that have been rejected for one reason or another. Or try a secondhand store that specializes in building products.

Habitats for Humanities has stores around where they sell stuff removed houses they are rebuilding or donated stuff they can not use.

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Dave, It can be done on the cheap with good results. There are plenty of used kitchen cabinets around that remodelers have to PAY to get rid of. You could contact kitchen contractors as well as demolition companies, and also check for free stuff on Craigslist. Old house "teardowns" are frequent in the Fairfax and Arlington area as there isn't much vacant land here to build on. Last year I obtained a whole new kitchen for the taking, from a house that had been remodeled for re-sale but was bought just to get the lot and then torn down! I'm betting that you have the same kind of stuff to store that I have, and some of it tends to be heavy. Older cabinets often are sturdier, especially metal ones, and they often aren't put together with pressed board and staples like some of the new ones. They don't necessarily have to match. Painting them all one color somewhat solves the problem. Hope to see you at the Winchester show in May and compare Cord woes (and joys) with you. Dave

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I agree about the old cabinets, I have found mine to be very handy, even if the appearance is not as nice as in the Sears tool catalog. And the sheetmetal workbenches and cabinets that look so nice are often a little flimsy compared to a good old kitchen cabinet. If you find the old metal ones so much the better. Good luck, Todd

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I bought quite a few old office metal filing cabinets. Some 3 draws and some 4. Very sturdy and great for holding heavy parts. I have a draw with starters and generators for my '39 and it deals with the weight easily. Tried timber and the weight of buick parts just killed them (that and the mice). Look for old metal office cabinets too. Try doing this with old kitchens drawers.:rolleyes:

Danny

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Good advice. You will note Danny's use of the black metal cabinets for smaller parts? I often see open rack and bin systems of a similar size and they seem like a good idea UNTIL you realize how dusty your garage is. Those open bins collect dust, dirt, bugs, etc in a garage environment, anything with doors or drawers you can close is better IMO.

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I have a lot of repurposed office furniture in my shop to, works good and sometimes can be picked up real cheap.

One other heavy duty storage system I have, may not be as available anymore. Back a few years ago it seemed like every flea market I went to had several people selling stacks of wooden ammo boxes. I bought a truck load of them for a few dollar a piece in two different sizes. They have rope handles and are about 18" wide by 36" or 24" long by 6" deep. I removed the lids and built heavy wood shelves to hold them as long heavy duty drawers. Better than just shelves since they can be deep and close together, since you can pull them out for access, or pull them out completely and carry them to a bench.

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Also check for auctions in your area some times you can get them cheap like $1-10.00 pending how big the auction is Al Storrs

I think what you're suggesting is good but my concern is floor space.:)

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One other heavy duty storage system I have, may not be as available anymore. Back a few years ago it seemed like every flea market I went to had several people selling stacks of wooden ammo boxes. I bought a truck load of them for a few dollar a piece in two different sizes. They have rope handles and are about 18" wide by 36" or 24" long by 6" deep. I removed the lids and built heavy wood shelves to hold them as long heavy duty drawers. Better than just shelves since they can be deep and close together, since you can pull them out for access, or pull them out completely and carry them to a bench.

I LOVE this idea.....can you share some photos?

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Dave: don't forget industrial auctions and junk shops that cater to commercial interests. I have bought very stout shelves and work benches for only a few bucks, and they are much stronger than almost anything commercially available. Also, with the cheap inports, I bought a stainless steel table new at a restaurant supply house. My steel workbenchs must weigh 300# each, but one supports a vice and is also my welding table, and the other a Harbor Freight Shear, bender, roller combination. Harbor Freight recently started offering high quality tool chests, and Sears/K Mart is offering cheaper ones priced considerably below their professional quality ones.

It doesn't take long to make your own cabnets from MDF, [plywood, or particle board. Use an air nailer and glue, and they go together amazingly fast. I need to build some book cases for my car magazines. I will remove some sheetrock in the garage and set them in the walls, saving about 4", giving me more room to walk around cars.

Sometimes I think there are not enough hours in a minute!

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I have a couple of old architectural drawing holders which I find very usefull. They are about 46" wide X 33" deep and are great for keeping smaller parts in. Particularly new and reconditioned ones as there is room to lay them all out so you can see what is there.

Very good for storing small chrome strips and also usefull for storing magazines.

The only downside is they use up floor space but they are strong enough to store stuff on top.

David

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Here are the heavy duty drawers I made out of ammo boxed with the tops removed. This is part of the Crosley parts department. This is the upstairs of my barn so the Gambrel roof works to my advantage to have deep shelves low and narrow high.

HeavyStorage.jpg

Here are the two sizes I have, I picked lighter ones to pull out to show, but they will hold most anything you can lift.

SmallDrawer.jpg

LongDrawer.jpg

This is another part of the upstairs so you can see several other storage methods.

LightStorage.jpg

Starting on the left and working around, you can see an old painted oak desk, picked up for a few dollars years ago, used it as a work bench for years now it is a sorting area. The gray drawers I have a bunch of, I keep finding them at garage sales and even free along side the road during cleanup week. I like them because you can stack them in odd places, you will see some in the knee hole of desk also. Next a neat piece of heavy office storage picked up at a library sale for $10. The red plastic tubs have magazines in them, I have a bunch of those to, bought at a household sale for $1/each. The yellow file card drawers have pretty much been obsoleted by computers, they stack into large arrays of drawers like I did here and also handy to tuck here and there on shelving to store small stuff among large, again cheap to pick up and available in several sizes. Wood drawers were from an old hardware store, very nice but hard to find anymore. Not showing but I also have a bunch of 2 and 4 drawer file cabinets scattered around, also cheap to pickup. The heavy office grade are the ones to get, they become very cheap when they get ugly from scraps and dents or are the old olive drab green color, and can hold the heavy stuff without binding up.

So that's a tour of a small portion of my storage area.

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I like to use "Metro Racking", these are the chrome wire shelf units that can lock to their 1" tube leg at each corner. This allows u to space shelves vertically as u need, and they are sold in 18" to 36" depths and 4, 6 and 8' in length, this makes them very versatile and if u buy wheels for the corner legs, they can easily be relocated even though loaded. They are kind of salty but can be had from used equipment dealers at a savings.

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