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I have been needing to get my lumber in one place for a while now. I’ve had lumber stored in so many places around my shop for a long time. Now I have a large cart that holds a ton. Check out how I built it! 

To build the base, I started by cutting a 40″ strip of plywood and set that aside. This will make the overall footprint size of 40″ wide x 96″ long once assembled.

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This is just angle of that cut… Cutting large sheets of plywood on my table saw without any sort of infeed support or and outfeed table is quite a chore. I ended up putting my workbench up against my saw to use as an outfeed table for this project because of working with these long cuts.

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Next, from the strip that was left over, I cut off a 1″ strip to use later as a foot for the plywood storage area.

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Because pretty much all commercial grade lumber you buy from big box stores are not all that consistant in size, I decided to joint the edges.

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Just like I would normally do, I had already cut the boards down to rough length. With the board jointed on one edge, I made all of my 2x6s 5 1/4″ wide and all of the 2x4s 3 1/4″ wide.

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Currently, because I’m currently in a bit of a shop-transition phase… I have not assembled my new dust collector and ductwork yet. So my jointer is just creating a nice pile of shavings.

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I setup a stop block toward the end of my fence at the length I wanted to cut in for the top rack storage above the sheet goods. Because I had the sheet goods portion set back at around a 5 degree angle, I needed this cut to be here so there would be enough lumber to support the upper racks.

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Then I used my taper sled to cut the angles from the corner down to my other cut line.

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Then I used a hand saw to finish up the cuts that the round table saw blade couldn’t match up…

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Now, this step is one that I should have done before cutting the previous angle. I had planned to do so, but had already gotten into the process of the angles and forgot about drilling the holes until I had already started…

Using a forstner bit, I drilled holes to allow 3/4″ EMT conduit to fit 2 3/4″ deep into the wood. This will provide plenty support for a lot of weight.

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I attached a scrap piece of 2×6 that I jointed the bottom of to my miter gauge. With my dado stack cutting at the widest I have, I cut a zero clearance strip through that 2×6.

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This allowed me to use either side of that to reference and cut large dados out of the vertical stretchers.

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Here is an overhead view of this cutting process.

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Here you can see the line that I had drawn on my board to be cut. I needed to side the board all the way to the right to clear out all the material to the left of that line.

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Let the chips fly! I just thought this was a pretty cool view of the chips flying at the camera…

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I did the same process for cutting large dados for the stretchers for under the base.

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Now to get started on the base storage. I cut a long strips of plywood at 22″ wide to make the vertical panels.

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I then cut 7 of those panels all at 16″.  I also cut 5 shelves at 15 1/2″. This left me one shelf short, but I did that on purpose… We’ll get to that in a bit.

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I then proceeded to cut a dado 1/4″ deep into the center on both sides of these panels. Two of the them only got a dado on one side because they will be the end panels.

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I setup my Kreg Jig® K5 and drilled pocket holes on one side of each of the panels.

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I only put the pocket holes on one side, so I could move my way down one by one adding a shelf and a panel.

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Here I’m adding the second panel and squaring it up.

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This process went very smooth and before I knew it I had all the panels in except the last one. I knew that the dados, not exact 3/4″ thickness of plywood, etc wouldn’t give me an exact measurement to know for the final panel until assembly. So it was at this point that I measured to see how wide I needed to cut this shelf.

 

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A quick cut at the table saw and I had the correct size shelf to fit into place.

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With a few final taps I was ready to put in the last few screws into the top!

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Then I brought over the 40″ wide bottom I cut at the beginning and flipped this assembly over onto it. Lined up to the front edge and screwed it into place using the pocket screws.

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I moved it down to the floor and started putting on the vertical stretchers.

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I lined them up with on side and inserted 3″ deck screws from the bottom. And also used pocket screws from each of the panels.

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I placed the 2×6 cross members that will support the casters. I wanted these to go all the way across the assembly for added structure.

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I bolted on 6 4″ casters that I later replaced with 5″ solid metal casters. After putting a couple thousand pounds of wood on this cart, these smaller casters didn’t do the job…

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I screwed in all of the 2×4 cross supports

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I used a sheet of MDF to line the sheet goods side of the cart. However, MDF comes in a length of 97″. I built the cart to be 96″ long and I didn’t want the MDF to overhang, so I used an edge guide and a skil saw to cut off an inch of material. Dusty dusty mess…

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I then attached the MDF to the stretchers and countersunk the screws so the heads wouldn’t touch any sheet goods placed on the cart.

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I used a portable band saw to cut the EMT tubing. It sure made the job a lot faster than using a hacksaw…

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I cleaned up the rough edges of the EMT with a file.

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42 bars of EMT conduit used to provide plenty rack lumber storage on this cart.

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And here it is! Complete!

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