I recently decided that I would transfer all my files to a hanging/suspension system. However, I didn't want a tall 4 drawer filing cabinet, and despite much searching - I found nothing in the UK that fitted my requirements of being low profile, modular and expandable. I discovered several (expensive) "Filing Benches" in the US that looked good, but despite toying with the idea of making something similar - I thought I would leave it to someone with superior woodworking skills.
So this is what I settled on - A very sturdy, mobile filing system made with simple techniques that require very little DIY skill.
Have fun playing with the design - I welcome improvements and suggestions. If you make something similar - I'd be really interested to see your take on it.
Enjoy my first instructable!
Step 1: Tools Needed
Nails (panel pins)
Step 2: Materials Needed
(this is a standard size in the UK - i'm sure something similar can be substituted)
Cut four 255mm lengths :
- Measure & mark batons with measuring tape, pencil and set square.
- Affix batons to solid surface with two clamps - I used the edge of my kitchen table, but whatever you use will get damaged.
- Cut batons to length using wood saw.
"RILL" castors from Ikea
20mm x 4mm Steel Rod
(I bought 2 x 2metre lengths which allows me to make 3 boxes with some spare)
"SNACK" box from Ikea (56cm x 37cm x30cm)
Step 3: Construct "SNACK" Box
You can paint the plywood first if you want.
If you're feeling strangely peckish - you can have a snack of some description, maybe even a cup of tea. :)
Step 4: Cut Metal Rod to Size
- Measure with tape and mark using set square and pencil.
- Fix rod to table using two clamps
- Cut rod with hacksaw. It will take ages & get hot.
- Get rid of rough edges (preferably with a metal file - although I didn't have one so used the sharpening stone from my chisel set)
Step 5: Measure & Mark Slot Location on Batons
For the batons I was using - I worked out that 19mm from one side of the baton is where the slot should start, and it should end 4mm later (that being the thickness of the rod).
So work out where they should be & mark the slots with a pencil.
Step 6: Cut Slot Into Batons
I drilled, then chiseled, then hacksawed my batons into submission. They loved it really.
Step 7: Glue and Clamp the Top of Batons
Clamp at top of baton and wedge remnant pieces of wood to push in the bottom.
Watch the glue ooze out from the edges.
Step 8: Nail Batons With Panel Pins
The screws on the other side of the box will scratch whatever they are resting on - so protect the surface if you care about it, or someone will probably shout at you.
Mind your delicate digits!
Step 9: Clamp/Wedge Batons Into Postition Until Glue Dries
As you can see - I have used a whole assortment of objets de'lying-around to wedge in and achieve a nice strong bond between the glue and the wood.
I left each baton to dry for an hour or so.
I also drank lots of tea.
Step 10: Attach Castors & Slot in Metal Rods/rails
Use narrow screws to avoid splintering the layers of laminated plywood - I opted for No4's at 3/4" long.
Attach "RILL" castors.
An electric screwdriver could be a godsend here. I prefer to use a ratcheting one since it give me slightly more control, but makes the whole thing slightly less tiring.
Slot the steel rods in - and hey presto, you have rails for hanging files on!
Step 11: Bask in the Glory of Your Finished Filing Drawer!
You could put some folders in there - and who knows, maybe even file some of those teetering stacks of paper.
But thats probably for another day. :)