One the biggest items that sold us on our new house was the fact that it had a walk-in storage area in the attic above the garage. The space measures 19′ x 7′ and the roof slants from about 7′ to about 4′. The space appealed to us because it could hold the majority of the non-clothing items that occupied our master closet in old other house.
During the week my wife and father-in-law installed drywall over the 2 walls that had exposed insulation (The walls came unfinished). I have to say that they did a much better job then I would have done and am thankful that I did not have to do it. As great as the drywall looked we still needed some shelves to effectively take advantage of the space.
The idea was to have one shelf about a foot from the top of the roof for smaller items, another shelf a little further down from there, and are large shelf that would be a little bit wider that would act like a counter. After some measuring I decided to do the shelves 8′ long and to make the two higher shelves 1′ wide and the bottom shelf 2′ wide. The reason for this was that I could buy a single piece of plywood that was 4′ x 8′ and have it cut into 3 different pieces that would use the entire piece of plywood and not have any scrap left over.
From there I got Qty 4 - 2′ x 4′ x 8′ pieces of would that would be the front & back, middle cross sections, and legs of the frame for the bottom counter. The idea was to build a frame that was 2′ x 8′ with 2 cross sections 32" from either end. This would give the plywood plenty of support. At each corner and the two middle cross sections I would have them attach to the frame at 90 degrees for the legs. I would attached the back to studs in the wall for rear support.
I had the plywood cut at Home Depot because they do it for free and it is a whole lot easier for them to do it. At home I cut the pieces for the frame and then started to cut the pieces for the legs and realized that I had estimated the legs to be 2" which in realty was two short to practically be used as a counter.
I quickly measure the height of the board that was sitting on a pair of saw horses which measured 30" so I decided that would be my new height. The only problem was that I had only bought 1 piece of wood for the legs and it was not 12′ long (I knew I should have picked up an extra 2′ x4′). I quickly went to the scrap wood pile I have and dug out 2 pieces of wood that would give me the proper length I needed. After cutting the legs I took all of the unassembled pieces of wood up to the attic.
Note: You may be wondering why I did not assemble the pieces before I went to the attic. The reason is that the door to the attic is in my daughters closet and is at a 90 degree angle to the door to her closet. If I had assembled it down stairs it would have been difficult to get it into the area. It was hard enough to get the two 2′ x 4′ x 8’s in there, adding another 2′ in depth would have made that much more difficult.
Once everything was in the attic I installed the top shelf first and then worked my way down. This was almost a perfect plan except for the fact that I had bought some indoor/outdoor pre-cut carpets for the floor and didn’t put those in first. I ended up putting them in after the shelves and counter which wasn’t too difficult but it would have been easier if I would have down that first.
The whole project took about 3hrs from start to finish and ended up costing $87. The carpet itself was $32 so the shelves only ended up being around $55 which is pretty cheap.
After the installation of the shelves my wife took the rest of the day to organize all of our stuff on our new shelves. I really did not think all of the stuff would fit but she did a great job with even some space left over. We still have a lot of room left in the rafters for other stuff we want to archive.
The project was fun and has inspired me to build out some cabinets and shelves in the garage now. I am just in the beginning stages of planning but that is probably on of the next big projects that I do.
Technorati Tags: Home Improvement,Attic,Storage Area,Shelves,Shelving,Wood Working