Tool Storage Boards

I got a question about my wall tool storage system and a request for some additional detailed photos. The idea for these storage boards is not my own. I “borrowed” the concept from an issue of Fine Woodworking Tools & Shops from several years ago when I was still a subscriber. The concept is very ingenious. French cleats screwed into wall studs anchor the system securely to the wall. Tool boards of various widths (depending upon the stock I had on hand when I made them) are hung from the French cleats to allow tools to be attached anywhere and in any configuration. The French cleats make the boards easy to rearrange on the wall, as well as easy to move the tools around on the boards. The boards have another square cleat, the same thickness as the French cleat, attached close to the bottom edge to keep the boards hanging plumb. Tool holders are very simple, consisting mostly of pegs glued into holes bored directly into the boards or short sticks with holes bored in them and a cleat glued underneath to enable the holder to be screwed to the boards. Sometimes, I skipped the cleats and just screwed through the edge of the board if it was narrow enough. So here are a bunch of more detailed photos of the whole system.

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8 thoughts on “Tool Storage Boards

  1. Great system Bob. If I ever get into a more proper shop space I’m going to put this system to use. French cleats are such a great way to hang things when you want the object to be portable.

  2. Thanks for posting this. I am trying to improve my pegboard system now (which will not be tough to beat) and this is really helpful. This is more simple than I thought it would be and it looks great. Now I just have to decide if I want to copy your system, or build a cabinet to put on the wall facing the end of the bench. Thanks!

  3. Bob ……… Thanks for showing the close ups, this makes for a very neat and tidy arrangement.. My home is built with reinforce CBS Block construction. With pored concrete in some of the block webs which makes for a sound wall so no 2X studs. I installed a sheet of 8’w X 4’h Baltic plywood I had left over on a 2 X 4 backing. I am planing on making tool holders for my tools so this came at a great time.

    One question I have though when you made your French Cleats how did you make them, with Hand Tools or a Table Saw ?

    Thanks again I enjoy your Blogs and Pod Casts very much. Merry Christmas to you and your Family.


    PS: After the Holidays I am jumping on my version of your bench.

    • Thanks Steve! I just planed the bevels with a drawknife and try plane. Took no more than about 5 minutes per wall cleat. The short cleats on the boards themselves took probably 2 minutes each. It’s rough work. You don’t need an airtight fit. Just close enough to engage each other.

  4. Thanks Bob, now that I moved from West TN to our new home in Northern KY, I’ll need some ideas to set up the new shop. Merry Christmas

  5. I like your tool racks Bob. Simple and straight forward. Thank you for posting these pictures so that we can translate these ideas to our own wall tool racks. A wall rack that I was considering building was from American Woodworker (Oct/Nov 2008). Someone built a version of the AW tool rack and posted some pictures.

    • I like that idea. While it is a little more work than what I did, it allows moving things around without turning the boards into Swiss cheese from all the screw holes. Very clever. Thanks for the link!

  6. Your welcome Bob. I see in his picture gallery, he had a few more pictures than on his webpage. At the end I saw he built two of these racks. Lotta tools! Although, it looks like he still has room to grow.

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