Food Storage

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    “The Pantry” it will store and rotate your canned goods.
    In an effort to organize our food storage I developed this pantry. It will rotate the food as you
    use it, FIFO. I thought you might find it interesting and if you decided to make something
    similar you could benefit from my building experience (and mistakes.) What I ended up with
    is a unit that will store over 300 lbs. of canned food while taking up only 456 sq inches of
    floor space (<4 sq.feet) at a cost of $134.72. This does not include the cabinet screws that I
    already had in inventory.
    My material pile, which includes 3 boards that I did not need. You will need 1 3/8” sheeting
    grade plywood, 1 sheet peg board and 9 1”x10”x8’ pine boards.
    I measured the distance from floor to ceiling and then cut off 2” to make it easier to set the
    unit in place. I used the resulting gap to store extra florescent lighting tubes. Cut your 4’ end
    boards the full width of your sheet. This is important as the sideboards and spacers will be
    supporting the weight of the food and you want them to be sitting on top of the bottom board.
    Cut the sideboards to fit inside the end boards and screw in place. Measure and cut a board
    into the two shelves. Fit them to separate the space into 3 equal parts and screw in place, both
    ends and back.
    Rip the remaining 5 boards lengthwise in 2 equal widths. Cut 6 pieces to length, place
    between shelves along each outside vertical board and screw in place. These are necessary to
    fasten the outside edges of the pegboard. Next using the cans that you will be storing,
    determine size of spaces for the dividing boards and screw them in place top, bottom and
    backs. If you do all small cans you may need to rip 1 more board for additional spacers.
    Cut the peg board to length and screw fast to the spacer boards. I cut mine 20” deep. The
    bottom space is 4” which will allow the larger cans to easily exit onto the shelf while still
    controlling the smaller cans. I left the upper hole, the one that you use to fill the space 5 ½.”
    This allows room to get your/my hand and forearm part way down the cavity so that it is not
    necessary to drop the cans the full length. Finally cut 1 ½” boards the length of the shelves
    and screw on the front of each shelf to keep the cans from rolling off the front.
    The finished project. Prior to screwing on the pegboard I removed the baseboard from the
    wall, determined where the studs were in the wall and screwed through the back of the
    pantry, through the drywall and into the studs to hold the unit in place. I use the pegboard to
    store bulky lighter items. It would probably hold up to heavier stuff but I figured with all the
    weight of the cans of food in back why take the chance.
    1.) You can look through pegboard to determine inventory levels.
    2.) My unit as constructed will hold 19 soup cans per row, 11 1lb. 10.5 oz cans per row or 14
    1lb cans.
    3.) At times some can sizes will jam when they make the turn from the column to the shelf. I
    place kicker boards at the backs where the column meets the shelf and this helped a bit. The
    jams are relatively easy to work out either way.
    4.) I built this unit in our garage and not in it’s final destination, the storage room. Banker
    Billy helped me move the unit. We took the pantry up the garage steps that are shown in the
    background of the garage pictures. We busted 1 light switch, 2 nuts, and a vertebrae but
    could not make the corner. So back down the steps, out onto the porch, up the steps in the
    living room, through the kitchen and just barely made it into the storage room. Banker Billy
    was pretty red in the face and our dogs were covering up their ears by the time we finally got
    the thing in place. Billy did suggest, well I can’t say everything that he suggested at least not
    in polite company. He did make a comment that it would have been far easier if I had built
    the unit in 2 sections and then screwed them together when we had it in place. He was right, I
    could have made a horizontal cut at the top shelf, put a bottom board on the cut off piece and
    a top board on the bottom piece and then screwed the 2 together at the installation.

    Had this sitting on my computer from someone else, I’ll try and get some pictures up soon!


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