Beer Bottle Drying Rack





Introduction: Beer Bottle Drying Rack

One of the most labor intensive parts of home brewing is the bottling process. Since I have to wait two more days to do the actual bottling I decided to make a tool to simplify the process.

This bottle drying rack was made from leftover scraps (making it effectively a free project) and can hold 72 bottles.

1/4" Hardboard
Scrap wood for legs

Step 1: Layout

Here is my scrap sheet of hard-board. I don't know the dimension, I just started by setting some bottles on it to get an idea of the needed spacing. I can 6 to a row putting them 4 inches on center. I used a straight-edge and pencil to draw a grid of layout lines.

Step 2: The Holes

Time to try out the holes.

I drilled a test hole in a piece of scrap wood using a 1 3/4" hole saw. Perfect fit.

Using a fast drill and the hole saw I drilled 72 holes in the hard-board using the layout lines from the previous step.

Step 3: The Legs

Time for the legs.

We're basically building a little L shape to prop the hard-board up off the floor so the bottles can drain (and remain sanitary). For this I use two pieces of scrap wood. The are actually shelves from the IKEA as-is department. 10 cents each and the turned out to be too small for what I purchased them for. This turned out to be an excellent use for them!

I cut each into 5 equal pieces, pre drilled holes, and screwed them together.

Step 4: Assembly

Assembly can be just a bit touchy but if you check for alignment carefully, locating your legs shouldn't be too much trouble. I chose to attach the legs using four screws each.

1. Position the legs.
  • Flip over the hard-board and place the legs where you want them.
2. Trace the outline of each leg with a pencil
3. Drill a pilot hole through the hard board inside of your pencil marks.
4. Flip the board right-side-up and carefully position the feet exactly withing the pencil marks.
5. Attach each leg with one screw.
  • Locate a pilot hole you drilled in step 4.
  • Drill down through this hole into the leg.
  • Screw the leg and board together using this hole.
  • Repeat for each leg, one screw only.
6. Inspect that your legs are still properly aligned.
  • The single screw should hold the leg in place but allow for fine tuning.
7. Secure remaining screws
  • Once alignement has been verified, drill pilot holes and drive in the remaining screws.

Step 5: Conclusion

This rack works great. Just put some old newspaper underneath it to catch the drips, and use it to dry your bottles without worrying about something falling into an open bottle and contaminating the beer.



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    I'm going to try to use bottles for legs by setting them underneath the board and threading the neck upward through the hole at each corner. Since the base of the bottle is longer than the neck, this should work!

    I was too lazy to make legs, so that was my thoughts too :) Works great, no problem with the water.

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    When walking past dust is kicked up. Best to cover bottles with cling wrap.

    Nice job , I actually have one just like it. It it so sanitary compared to other racks that put something in the bottle. Do you use iodine?

    I probably sound like a nag but isnt ply wood really like a sponge for bacteria & fungus? The design is an excellent idea but after spending all that time washing bottles why risk it? You should seal it, I dont know how tho maybe laminate or make one with plexi.

    u can get 4x8 sheets (or less even) of treated plywood that is mildew/bacteria resistance at home depot i believe.... its easier then doing it yourself

    I'd skip the treated plywood. It is treated with all kinds of nasty stuff (arsenic being one) which you don't want anywhere near consumables (beer).

    wood is no longer treated with arsenic and hasn't been for a while (except in some commercial and marine settings. I think that if you are using it as a drying rack and the liquid is not running back into the bottles then green wood would be a good idea. If this still bugs you then use plastic tubs with holes cut the same way. The biggest problem i've had is trying to figure out a space to put drying bottles as i have limited room.

    Hello, I wouldn't really worry about the fungus. The bottles are going to dry fast and the wood will dry just as quickly. Fungus will not have time to grow. As long as the board is not soaking for days at a time I don't see a problem. Remember it is important to be clean and sanitized but, this is not surgery. You will never be sterile. You just want to avoid the wild yeasts and bacteria. Keep things clean and sanitized and you will be okay.