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Old 11-13-10, 08:37 AM   #1
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storing tools and parts without drawers or pegbboard

I need to see everything and if my stuff has drawers I won't use the drawers. I'm thinking of building or buying some kind of open storage solution for tools nuts bolts nails bike parts etc.

any ideas (w pictures)? anyone else come up with a similar solution?
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Old 11-13-10, 09:19 AM   #2
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slat wall. screw pieces of pipe to the side of your bench, this acts like holsters for you common tools.
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Old 11-13-10, 09:51 AM   #3
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Here's an example of using plastic bins: . There's a lot of variation with this concept: different sizes, availability, hanging systems, manufacturers. But this site gives you an idea. Look around.
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Old 11-13-10, 11:22 AM   #4
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in my Dad's ulpholstery shop he used to recycle jars, jelly, PB, babyfood, and use them for nails, screws, tacks etc. he would drive screws through the lids attaching them to a 4-5' 1x3 then screw that to the rafters. while he was working if he needed a certain kind of nail or tack he could just look up and unscrew the jar.

a few of my brothers still use this method
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Old 11-13-10, 11:26 AM   #5
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Tool rolls. canvas strip. lay tool on it.
fold over, and sew a pocket for each tool.
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Old 11-13-10, 01:03 PM   #6
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A "wall" is a poor way to store tools. It's wasteful of space because the useable volume is greatly reduced. I hear you and agree about not wanting to fish through a sea of bits to get what you want. but laying everything out "on the flat" is just plain wasteful of space. If you have the luxary of the room to do it that way then fine. But in my case, and I'm sure many others here, there's always more stuff to organize and put away. So devoting a huge piece of wall to store tools where you could use shelving or drawers and store easily 8 times as much is out of the question for most of us.

The solution for using drawers or shelves efficiently is to subdivide the space by using other containers. Jars sound like a nice idea at first but round things don't fit together well so again there is a lot of wasted space. So that leaves us with retangular containers to subdivide the shelves or drawers.

Tools layed into shallow trays that fit in a drawer but that can be easily pulled out to lay on the bench during use are a great way to use a drawer. That way you can put two or three shallow tool trays in a drawer. It's best though if the tools stored this way are prioritized so that the ones in the lower tray are the specialty tools that are not needed as often. That leaves the frequently used tools in the first removable tray and the second layer. With the the first tray removed and laid on the bench you have access to both the first and second layer easily. Yet they can be put away and only take up the room of one drawer instead of half a wall if using vertical wall panel layouts. If you're handy and do other home wood working projects a tool drawer of this sort could easily be set up so that the drawer is opened to the stop and then the upper tray comes out and slots into receiver slots in the rear of the drawer to stand at an angle. Now you've got both the top layer AND second layer of tools exposed for easy access. Yet it's only a second's worth of effort to set it up or store them away and close the drawer. It also puts the tools that would fill a 3 x 6 foot piece of wall into a single drawer for when not needed. Room on the wall that when equipped with shelves can hold a ton of bike parts so that they off the floor.

The glass jars on the rafters of a garage is a pretty slick idea if you can reach them. But in my case the rafters are not an option. Instead after trying various bin boxes I've pretty much gone with the plastic parts trays that come with the adjustable size inner wells for screws bearings little brackets and other smaller bits. I still use my own home made cardboard bin boxes for mid size parts and for bigger stuff I use Rubbermaid totes in two sizes with lids so they can stack.

I make my own cardboard bin boxes from double layer high density corrugated cardboard salvaged from various sources for free. I've made up a template from 1/8 hardboard that I use for cutting. I cut out the blanks about 6 to 8 at a time by "nailing" the layers together in the waste areas with dabs of hot glue. I mark the cut lines with the template on the top layer and then cut out the stack with my bandsaw. A skill saw with a long blade would also work. This makes up a stack of blanks in short order. Then I fold them by making up a set of clamped on stop guage strips on the bench and pressure crease the folds over the corner of the bench to get clean fold lines. Then fold with the overlaps and hot glue together. This produces pretty stury boxes that last for years. And if they do get damaged no biggie. It was free other than a couple of minutes of time and are easily replaced.
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Old 11-13-10, 01:11 PM   #7
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My dad stored a lot of things in glass jars, the earthquake , centered 100 miles away emptied those shelves.
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Old 11-13-10, 02:46 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by BCRider View Post
A "wall" is a poor way to store tools.
True - but we're talking about working on bikes here.

How many different tools do you actually use? It's surprising how far you can get with just a 5 mm allen wrench. I've got a pretty good collection and I use a pegboard. My allen wrenches, cable cutter and other frequently used tools are in the center, close to my work stand. Freewheel removers, big wrenches and tools that get a lot of torque are stored close to my bench vise.

If I was working on cars I'd use a roller cabinet so that I could pull everything up close to where I'm working. Since I work on bikes, it's easier to pull what I'm working on up close to my tools.
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Old 11-13-10, 03:47 PM   #9
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Or some drawrs filled with tools by category and weight. Like a drawer with all fixed wrenches (how hard can it be to find a 10mm key between others? I have no trouble, also common sizes I use like 10/13/15/17 i have them more the once , even more than twice plus tubular and combined solutions, so a quick look and a grab ensures me the correct key in my hand),
A drawer for special tools (pullers, chain tools, etc), another one for odd shape general tools (hammer, pliers, vice grips, screwdrivers, files, etc), and the mighty drawer of "luck" (filled with lots of screws, washers, small things unsorted recovered from other places, not the new stuff, but that can be the save of the day, like:" I think a stack of large washers will clear this gap.. let me check in the magic drawer "
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