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7 Tool and Gear Storage Tips for Your Workshop

7 inventive ways to organize your work space and the tools that threaten to clutter it

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Family Handyman
Family Handyman

Adjustable Drawer Dividers

You can restore order to messy drawers in your shop with 1/4-in. plywood partitions and self-stick weather stripping. For the strongest grip, use spongy “closed cell” weather stripping.

Apply weather stripping to two sides of the drawers as shown, then cut the partitions long enough so they squish firmly into the rubber on both ends. A good rule of thumb is to make the partitions 1/4-in. longer than the inside measurement between the pieces of weather stripping.

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PVC Pipe Clamp Rack

Are your pipe clamps missing in action right when you need them? Build this snap-in, snap-out storage rack from PVC pipe. For 1/2-in.-diameter iron pipe, use 3/4-in. PVC, and for 3/4-in. diameter pipe, use 1-in. PVC.

To make the rack, cut 2-in. lengths of PVC, and with a hacksaw or band saw, slice them lengthwise about 3/16-in. past the diameter’s centerline. This creates the gripping action to firmly hold the heavy iron pipe. Drill and countersink two holes in each PVC piece, then screw them to a pair of boards. Attach the upper board to your shop wall and snap a pipe clamp in each end to position the lower board for screwing to the wall.

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Store Sheet Goods on a Ladder

An old extension ladder is just right for holding leftover plywood, drywall, plastic laminate, and spare boards. Take the ladder sections apart, lay one on the floor near a wall, and then load it up. This handy rack will hold your sheet goods high and dry and make it easier to find what you need.

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Family Handyman

File by Grit

Organize sandpaper by grit in a handy plastic file box. Just list the grits on the tabs and you can instantly find the right one. The box is also a good place to store partially used pieces that often get thrown away.

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Spray-Can Six-Pack

Got a bunch of loose cans of spray paint rolling around the floor of your shop? Next time you finish off a six-pack, save the case and use it to store all of your spray paint.

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Up, Up and Away

Put joist spaces to use with this the grits. Fasten eye screws to the joists and cut lengths of chain to keep odd lengths of trim and pipe out of the way but easy to find. Open one side of the eye screw with a pair of pliers to slip the chain into place. Make the chain a bit longer for future expansion.

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Family Handyman

Hang-It-All Hooks

The plastic hooks that plumbers use to support pipes make convenient hangers for just about anything. They’re strong and cheap and come in a range of sizes.