Garage Shelving

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Old 08-20-17, 03:46 PM
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Garage Shelving

Hey guys/girls, first time posting here.

I am planning on building a shelf in my garage and just want a bit of guidance in the wood department as I'm not very well educated when it comes to woodworking.

My garage is 20ft wide with a 10.5ft ceiling. I'm wanting to build a shelf across the entire back wall of the garage for general storage. (Holiday deco, stock car parts, general garage crap storage)

It is a deep garage (can fit general storage items in front of a Mustang and an SUV and still have a walkway around the front of the cars) so I'm planning on using a 4x8 uncut plywood for shelving material.

I also plan on having a work bench below it and may be tempted to hang small hand/power tools or a small TV for entertainment from the bottom of the shelf above the work area.

Simply put, here is what I envision, let me know if I am under/over-engineering this.. leveled 2x4 bolted to wall along entire width of garage about 7ft off floor, guess one could call it a ledger board. 4x8 15/32 plywood as shelving material set on top of the 2x4 and bolted to it. Instead of making large supports under the shelf, I envisioned using multiple (probably four) half inch threaded steel rods to suspend the "hanging section" of the shelf from the studs in the ceiling of the garage. I opted for a suspension-type design to spare me room underneath to have a working area. All mounting, such as 2x4 to wall and the half inch threaded steel to the ceiling, I plan to use 3/8in or 1/2in 3-inch long lag bolts. I would run 2x4 across the entire width of the shelf at the outside end of the 4ft "overhang" to "link" the 4x8s together, then drill 5/8in holes through both plywood and 2x4 for the 1/2in threaded steel rod then use locking nuts and 3/8x1-1/2in washers to secure the shelf at level position.

I don't see putting any more than MAYBE 150lbs (that's really pushing it) spread out over one 4x8 section. That kind of weight wouldn't cause any bowing on a 4ft 15/32 plywood, would it? Or would you suggest 23/32 plywood?

Sorry in advance if some of what I say doesn't make any sense, again, not very well versed when talking woodworking language
 
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Old 08-20-17, 05:26 PM
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Welcome to the forums.

A ledger board (2x4) screwed into the wall studs is fine. A 2x4 under the front edge of the shelf is good. A 4' unsupported span will belly. Do you need a "shelf" depth of 4' ? Using 3/4" and cutting the 4x8 sheet into two 2x8 shelves would be a better idea.

The suspended idea would work. You could use hanger bolts and coupling nuts to attach the threaded rods to the ceiling joists.
 
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Old 08-20-17, 05:33 PM
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I could understand building a work bench but for shelves, I would buy pre-fab. It will cost less & it's far less work.
 
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Old 08-21-17, 02:44 AM
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Are you sure you want a workbench 4' wide? Generally 2' is sufficient... and that leaves you enough plywood for two 1' wide shelves. A 4x8 workbench only works if you have access to all sides.
 
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Old 08-21-17, 05:06 AM
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Storage

As has been mentioned, the overhead storage shelf needs interior framing support. Only supporting the front and back edges will not be satisfactory.
 
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Old 08-21-17, 07:30 AM
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What is the structure that you will be hanging the steel rods from like? To store things 4 feet back from the front edge you're probably going to have to climb on the shelf.....you going to be comfortable with 3 1/2 feet of head room? Also, not too much head room to work at your workbench. You up to rethinking your design? Back wall ledger sounds fine. How about doubled 2 X 6's along the front edge running from the end walls with a center post resting on the floor....the center post would not obstruct the cars. Maybe a couple of joists running from the back ledger to the 2 X 6's at 4 foot intervals. Maybe 5/8" plywood would be a little better than 1/2" or if $ isn't a factor use 3/4" ply. Build it to hold more weight than you think you need so you can load it up without worry.
 
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Old 08-21-17, 07:55 AM
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Thanks for the responses!

@Pjmax, thank you for your insight on the unsupported 4x8, I agree and will re-draw my plans to add supports. The 4ft isn't NEEDED, but wanted for multiple reasons (growing room, bulky items, can hang work light when working on car, etc.) I was actually planning on using unistrut (Lowes has one called superstrut) that i would run parallel to the end of the shelf which i think would be better as the weight would be more evenly distributed between all of the ceiling joists as opposed to just a couple.

@ShortyLong, right now im looking at about $250-$300 in materials for a massive 20x4x3 (widthxdepthxheight) storage space that gives me options to hang lighting or small tools and doesn't take up my floor space (my floor space is precious) most other shelving solutions take up my floor space, dont provide nearly as much storage, and cost around 200 each.

@marksr, my OP is strictly for shelving above said workbench, the workbench ill build later. I dont plan on making a workbench any bigger than 2.5 to 3ft deep. most likely will be 2.5ft.
 
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Old 08-21-17, 08:19 AM
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JIMMIEM, the garage is a finished drywalled room, above is another room of the house, so it is engineered floor joists (not solid 2x8/2x12, but also not the "hollow" joists that have the triangular openings. it has ply in between the ends.

3.5ft head room for shelf is fine by me as i have long arms and can reach further back. Most of what will be going up there will be in rubbermaid crates filled with holiday deco, car parts, junk wife doesnt want thrown away and wont really be accessed much. as far as underneath the shelf, i put it at 7ft as that is your usual standard interior doorway opening height. now that im looking at adding support to span the back ledger to front "plate" for supporting the 4ft span, I may consider going to 7.5/8ft and giving myself 3/2.5ft of height on storage. Do you think 2x4, maybe doubled 2x4 at the end would suffice as opposed to single or doubled 2x6? also, using a unistrut/superstrut system with (5) 1/2in steel rods as opposed to a 4x4 post in the middle?

This is more or less what im shooting for, minus the second shelf and instead of what Pjmax suggested with the rod that has anchoring, using a unistrut/superstrut system to distribute weight across the whole ceiling through multiple joists, what say ye?

http://contractorkurt.com/wp-content...-variation.jpg

EDIT: might help if i posted the link to the pic i was referring to...
 
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Old 08-21-17, 09:39 AM
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Might be a good idea to check with the I joist manufacturer regarding hanging stuff from them.
 
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Old 08-21-17, 09:42 PM
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JIMMIEM, the joists are TJI 210 i believe in the 9.5in variant (we had house built and I have pics, worth the time to take pics lol) I tried looking into spec sheets that I've found but theyre all french to me. Maybe you or someone else here with framing/engineering experience can help me out here?

only realization that Ive come to in looking at my pics, is that the joists are running parallel to the direction that the shelf will be running. So, to distribute weight, i would have to span the unistrut/superstrut perpendicular to the shelf, so i can catch 3 or 4 of them.
 
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Old 08-22-17, 03:15 AM
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A 2x4 under the front edge of the shelf is good. A 4' unsupported span will belly. Do you need a "shelf" depth of 4' ? Using 3/4" and cutting the 4x8 sheet into two 2x8 shelves would be a better idea.
I have many similar styles of shelving for the garage and basement.

3/4 plywood with 2x4's lag bolted across the back and vertical 2x4's with small pieces attached to support the corners.

You do not need horizontal 2x4's at the front with 3/4 plywood and spacing every 4', they will not bow or warp and are incredibly strong.

I have 2' deep shelving in the garage and 4' deep in the basement.

There is nothing stronger or cheaper for mass storage.
 
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Old 08-22-17, 05:39 AM
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How about calling Weyerhauser and talking to a product engineer about your plan to suspend from the joists?
 
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Old 08-22-17, 07:40 AM
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Marq1, thank you for your input. It's nice to hear reassurance that I can do this lol. I may put 2x4 anyways just in case. Now, I just need to find out if my joists will support it (which I imagine they can, given that they can take hundreds of pounds from the floor above)

JIMMIEM, I have emailed the local company that provided the lumber to the jobsite. Awaiting response
 
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Old 08-22-17, 01:58 PM
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So, I misquoted a bit, at 4' no sag, at 8' a little. Advantage of the vertical 2x4, simple, cheap, fast to install, and strong. Have occasionally climbed.

Another advantage, get to hang important stuff like the beer bottle opener!

jpg.gif 20170822_162137.jpg (96.7 KB)
 
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Old 09-17-17, 08:53 PM
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So here is what I did. seems super sturdy, held me (230lbs) while my wife handed stuff up to me to store.
 
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Old 09-18-17, 01:52 AM
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Looks great

I would suggest painting the drywall [after all I am a painter ] unpainted drywall, especially the unpainted joint compound can absorb moisture in the air and will deteriorate over time.
 
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Old 09-23-17, 09:31 AM
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I do plan on painting the ceiling, the walls are painted now. Just a matter of finding time! lol
 
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