This Week in the Shop we make a storage crate suitable to store a large pinewood derby track. This crate is simple to build and made out of very cheap materials. As built, this crate costs roughly $75 per crate in plywood and hardware supplies.
This project can be attempted by the beginner, but also offers rewards for the intermediate and experienced craftsperson. This crate modifies easily for a variety of purposes, such as anything that needs serious customizable storage like as oddly-shaped tools, artwork, sports equipment, camping equipment, etc. For example this crate would store a kayak or canoe for long-term storage and transport easily.
You can find plans at www.besttrack.com. They also sell the a fantastic aluminum Derby track and gate kit which makes the Pinewood Derby a breeze to set-up, execute and take down.
The Storage Crate
- 2 full sheets of plywood, 8 foot x 4 foot by ½ in
- 1 section of 2x2x8’, construction grade pine
- 1 section of 1x4x8, common white pine
- #10-½” screws or construction screws or machine bolts, washers and nuts.
- 4 utility handles 5 ½” or 6” wide
- Impact drill and drill driver with bits
- Circular saw and guide
- Tape Measure
- Combination Square
Milling and Dimensioning:
- Use a circular and saw and guide cut down plywood to size following best track.com cut list. If you do not have a circular saw or the proper space, most home centers will cut plywood to size free of charge.
- Cut the corner bracing to size at the miter saw.
- Trim the 1×4 to 86” length at the miter saw.
- Trim your hardwood floor straps to length at the miter saw.
- Fasten the short ends to the corner bracing using construction screws and impact drill with appropriate bit. Use a drill with a small drill bit to create a pilot hole in minimize any splitting.
- Clamp the corner braces onto the long sides and fasten with construction screws.
- Clamp the support rail to the side and fasten with screws.
- Position the bottom onto the assembly and secure with construction screws.
- Attach your floor straps with construction screws.
- Flip the assembly onto its side. Mark the location of the hinges, 30” from each side.
- Using a scrap piece of plywood as a spacer, position to hinge for installation. Use construction screws or machine bolts to install the hinge in the correct placement.
- Flip the assembly on to its base, and position the top for installation. Install the hinges to the top with construction screws.
- Use a reciprocating saw and blade, angle grinder and cut off wheel, rotary tool or hacksaw to trim any protruding screws or bolts.
- Mark a centerline 6” from the top of the assembled storage crate on each end. Mark a cross line 4” in from either side to locate the hinges.
- Eyeball handle location and install with impact drive and construction screws. Trim bolts if necessary.
- Sand, paint and finish as necessary.
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