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DIY Garage Cabinet

Updated: Jul. 24, 2019

Get hanging storage and shelving with this two-hour project

FH08NOV_COMCAB_01-2Family Handyman
This spacious cabinet efficiently organizes and stores all your painting clutter or other tools and hobby supplies. It's easy to build in just two hours.

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Overview: Cabinet design, cost and materials

Combination cabinet

The cabinet closes compactly against the wall. You can hang stuff on the outside of the door too.

We designed this wall cabinet with painting supplies in mind, but you can use it to store just about anything, including hand tools and small boxes of fasteners and hardware. We simplified the construction by using a build-a-box-and-cut-it-in-half technique and then face-mounting a full-length continuous hinge. It couldn't be easier. And the result is a sturdy, practical wall-hung cabinet.

Materials for one of these cabinets cost us about $55, but you could reduce the price per cabinet by buying 4 x 8-ft. sheets of pegboard and plywood and building several cabinets instead.

Figure A: Cabinet Details

Build the cabinet from a 4×4 sheet of plywood and a 4×4 sheet of pegboard. Find the Materials

Note: Figure A and a Materials List are available in pdf format in Additional Information below.

Step 1: Assemble the box

Photo 1: Glue and nail the box together

Build a simple box and cover both sides with pegboard. Remember to face the good side of the back pegboard to the inside of the box.

Start by cutting 8-in. strips of plywood and screwing them together to form a 2-ft. by 4-ft. box. Place screws accurately as shown in Figure A to avoid hitting them when you cut the box in two (Photo 2). Also be sure to orient the pegboard so the good side faces out on the front and in on the back. Be careful to cut the pegboard pieces perfectly square and with straight sides so you can use them as a guide for straightening the box sides and squaring the box as you nail on the pegboard (Photo 1).

Step 2: Cut the box into two parts

Photo 2: Saw the box in half

Cut the box in two using a guide board for a perfectly straight cut. Before the final cut, use shims and tape to hold the box together.

To cut the box into two pieces, begin by tacking a straight board to the box sides as a saw guide. Position the guide so the cut runs 3 in. from the front edge of the box and falls between the screws. Set the saw blade to cut 7/8 in. deep. Align the guide carefully on each side so the cuts meet in the corners. Before you make the final cut, use shims and tape to hold the cabinet together, and keep them on until the cut is complete (Photo 2).

Step 3: Install the hinge

Photo 3: Attach the hinge

Mount the door on the cabinet with a continuous hinge. Hold it in place with one screw on each end. Then use a small, self-centering bit to make pilot holes for the remaining screws.

Reconnect the boxes with a 48-in. long continuous hinge (Photo 3).

Step 4: Add the trim and shelves

Photo 4: Install trim

Trim the door with corner molding. Mark the inside of the molding at cabinet corners and turn the molding face down on the miter saw to cut the miter.

Figure A shows the cabinet dimensions and details as well as the rack we added to hold paint roller covers. Screw two 3-in.-wide strips of 3/4-in. plywood to the back of the cabinet. These provide a stronger hanging surface, and they space the cabinet from the wall to allow the use of pegboard hooks on the cabinet back. Mount the cabinet by driving 1/4-in. by 3-in. lag screws through the hanging strip into wall studs.

Additional Information

Required Tools for this Project

Have the necessary tools for this DIY project lined up before you start—you’ll save time and frustration.

  • Brad nail gun
  • Circular saw
  • Drill bit set
  • Drill/driver - cordless
  • Miter saw
  • One-handed bar clamps
  • Safety glasses
  • Self-centering drill bit
  • Table saw
  • Tape measure

Required Materials for this Project

Avoid last-minute shopping trips by having all your materials ready ahead of time. Here’s a list.

  • Masking tape
  • See Materials List in "Additional Information"
  • Shims
  • Wood glue