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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-14-2012, 12:49 PM Thread Starter
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Default Building pull out shelves-need wood suggestions

Hi, I am replacing my kitchen shelves with pull out shelves...you know, the "my back hates me solution." In one shelf I want to build a removable box for potatoes, onions, etc. My question is what kind of wood or ply would you recommend? I would like to put air holes throughout the box, have it removable, and then finish it. Suggestions on finish are also appreciated. I have been finishing the shelves with Deft but am open to opinions since food products will be in contact. Lastly, I would like the material to be thin so I don't lose too much room to the box itself.

Thanks in advance for your input.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-14-2012, 04:00 PM
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I did something like you are suggesting. I used 5/8" melamine coated particle board so that I didn't have to finish that part and put a frame around it made from white birch about 5/8" thick by about 2 1/2" high. I mitred the corners of the birch and rabetted the bottom inside edge to fit the melamine. The frame gives the shelf strength to prevent sagging and keeps stuff from flying off when opening and closing. I finished the birch with water based varathane. You gain so much usable space by being able to easily get to the back of the shelves that I wouldn't scrimp on materials just to get a little more.

If you go this route, I strongly recommend using Franklin's Melamine wood glue. It is the best I have ever used for edge glue porous materials like particle board.

Someone I consider a master woodworker once told me that a master woodworker is not someone who never makes mistakes. He is someone who is able to cover them up so that no one can tell.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-15-2012, 06:58 PM
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I also replaced three shelves in a cupboard. I used the steel basket storage units from Lee Valley Tools. The tracks are really smooth and so easy to install. I remember these were priced @ $32.oo each. I would have to build the boxes and buy the sliding tracks at nearly the same cost, so I think I saved a lot of trouble and time.

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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-22-2012, 09:58 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks to both for your input. While I am still debating which path to follow, I looked at Lee Valley and could not find the steel baskets. It appears my wife has an opinion and she is leaning toward metal. Do you happen to remember the actual title or stock number?
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-22-2012, 11:15 PM
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This is one example. Small Side-Mount Pullouts - Lee Valley Tools There are more but my computer is running too slow to find them for you. Search their hardware catalog for "Kitchen".

Someone I consider a master woodworker once told me that a master woodworker is not someone who never makes mistakes. He is someone who is able to cover them up so that no one can tell.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-29-2012, 11:59 AM
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Default Wire Storage System

False-Front Wire Drawers - Lee Valley Tools

Above is page 2 from Lee Valley Tools Kitchen Harware; Wire Storage Systems. I think there are several sizes available and different applications on their previous page. Hope this works for your purposes.

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-29-2012, 09:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jnahman View Post
Hi, I am replacing my kitchen shelves with pull out shelves...you know, the "my back hates me solution." In one shelf I want to build a removable box for potatoes, onions, etc. My question is what kind of wood or ply would you recommend? I would like to put air holes throughout the box, have it removable, and then finish it. Suggestions on finish are also appreciated. I have been finishing the shelves with Deft but am open to opinions since food products will be in contact. Lastly, I would like the material to be thin so I don't lose too much room to the box itself.

Thanks in advance for your input.

These look nice, except that company discontinued them...

Well... Wall cabinet lifts are spendee, but here's an example: Rev-A-Shelf
They are ideal for someone in a wheel chair or short in height. But might give you ideas. I know there's more out there if you google "wall cabinet lifts" or "kitchen pulldown cabinets"

I've build custom cabinets with pull-out drawers. They were inside the cabinets. The frame for the drawers were short drawer frames made from 3/4" x 1-1/2" high oak veneer ply (oak banding) for sides/front/back of the drawer with 1/2" oak veneer ply for the bottoms. These were attached to drawer slides. The removable drawers were 3/4" x 4" high (and higher) oak veneer (oak banding) with 1/2 Oak veneer bottoms. 4 cabinets made that way.

Why the 3/4" ply? It was for a chef. For instance, one side top was granite, other side top was end-grain cutting board, with a lower stainless trough between. With the doors closed, it just looked like cabinets. Inside was removable drawers of various sizes. Cabinets were divided into foodstuffs, cooking utensils and other such. I also built in toe-kick drawers... but personally, they add space, but those are too low for me to use comfortably (my knee and back).

This places catalog should give you ideas:
Pull out shelves that slide from $30.95 custom kitchen pullout shelf 20 years of rollout pantry shelving pull-outs roll

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Last edited by MAFoElffen; 10-30-2012 at 07:39 AM.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-02-2012, 10:47 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you for the link. I too am using 3/4 ply since the shelves are holding cast iron pots and other items. From what I can tell, the 100 lb slides have a width limit. Has anyone tried large spans? I want to replace my cupboard shelves with a 30 inch wide board. The ply bottom would be screwed into a poplar side frame. I am assuming the slide limit may have to do with their small mounting screws, which could be replaced with longer ones. All input appreciated...and thanks to those who have already commented.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-02-2012, 12:23 PM
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Depending on your kitchen layout you might have a couple of square corners in your cabinets. This is mostly dead space. You might consider adding 'lazy Susan' revolving shelves. They are relatively easy to build and are great at recovering the dead space in the corner. We use them to store spices for easy access.

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-02-2012, 08:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jnahman View Post
Thank you for the link. I too am using 3/4 ply since the shelves are holding cast iron pots and other items. From what I can tell, the 100 lb slides have a width limit. Has anyone tried large spans? I want to replace my cupboard shelves with a 30 inch wide board. The ply bottom would be screwed into a poplar side frame. I am assuming the slide limit may have to do with their small mounting screws, which could be replaced with longer ones. All input appreciated...and thanks to those who have already commented.
Wide spans, make webs and attach to the front edge and rear edge of your self, going horizontally across your shelf... Ex- Lay vertically pieces or 3/4 x 1-1/2 to 2" stock and go horizontally across. This will strengthen your selves. If it is also deep, add more webs. The advantage to deep pull out shelves, it that you don't have to cut back an upper shelf to get to the back of a lower shelf, ending up with more storage room.

I did a corner cabinet lazy susan here. I love them. I used 3/4 thick shelves with 3/4 thick disks 26" in diameter. A 12" heavy-duty lazy susan bearing turntable will support about 1000 pounds. I angled 45 degrees across the corner (not an inside square) so that I could monopolize on the lazy susan.

"Don't worry, I saw this work in a cartoon once."
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