Space-saving Bar Clamp Racks
Author: Suwat PhruksawanDate: 22 October 2005
As with any small workshop everywhere, the wall space in my shop is always at a premium. And with the growing number of bar clamps I'm starting to accumulate, I found myself with a dilemma--should I keep adding them on the wall rack for easy access or should store them somewhere else to save the real estate at the expense on accessibility?
Unwilling to sacrifice any, I came up with the idea of the space-saving bar clamp racks as shown in the pictures below. Basically, it is a set of notched wood frames with varying lengths stacked on top of each other. Each are attached to the other by the sturdy hinges so that they can be opened like a book. With this design, I can put 30 clamps on the wall within the space for ten, and each clamps are still within easy reach.
To make the racks I cut all the pieces from the scrap lumber I have lying around in my shop and put them together like picture frames. The top and the bottom pieces of each frames are cut into series of notches wide enough for the thickest bar clamps and with the spacing that allows each clamp to fit side-by-side comfortably. I cut all the notches with this jig which makes it a lot easier to get exact same width and exact same spacing with less than one-tenth of the time.

Once all the pieces are cut, I assembled them together with biscuits, glue and screws into three frames. Then I attached them all with the hinges. I tried to use more hinges than usual to make sure the doors won't sag under heavy load.

I attached the support blocks underneath each notches to prevent them from breaking just in case the heavy clamps get accidentally dropped on the racks (left).

The magnet clip (above) keeps the frames in place when closed.
After I put some protecting finish on the the racks and let them completely dried, I cut a roll of foam weather strip commonly used for sealing around the door (bought t home store for a few dollars) into small pieces. Then I stickered each pieces on top of the upper frame between each notches. This is to protect the racks from heavy clamps as well as keeping the clamps from moving around with the doors are opened.

The racks are finally installed to the wall, ready for use.