Introduction: Expandable PVC Tool Holder
Runner Up in the
PVC Contest 2017
I wanted to create a holder for screwdrivers and pliers that didn't require me to drill into the brick wall behind my workbench, especially since I plan on moving the workbench at some point in the near future. I also wanted something I could expand easily if I added more tools. After considering making something out of wood, I realized I could quickly and easily make one out of PVC! My thanks to Serega_Canada who gave me the original idea.
Saw (or PVC cutter, or other PVC cutting method of your choice)
Drill and drill bits
The supplies listed below are for the tool holder as I made it - add or subtract materials as needed!
5 feet of 1/2" PVC
3 1/2" PVC wyes
2 90º 1/2" PVC elbows
1 1/2" PVC Tee
3 1/2" PVC plugs
3 wood screws
PVC primer and cement (optional)
Step 1: Measure and Cut Your PVC Tubing
For my screwdrivers, I settled on an even 1.5" gap between each one, so I cut a piece of PVC that was 16.5" long (remember to include room on each end for the fittings).
For the smaller screwdrivers and wrenches, I cut a 11.5" piece.
Step 2: Drill and Deburr Holes
Using a marker, I marked spaces 1.5" apart on the 16.5" piece of PVC and drilled through it, first with a 1/4" bit and then a 3/8" bit. I found it difficult to make the holes line up, but ultimately this didn't seem to matter to the final product. Remember to make sure all of your screwdrivers fit! I deburred the edges of each hole and found that the largest screwdriver still didn't fit, so I had to deburr some more.
For the small screwdriver and pilers holder, I again drilled 3/8" holes, but spaced closer together.
Step 3: Cut "Inner Sleeves" and Assemble
Using some leftover PVC tubing, I cut 3 1" PVC inner sleeves, and used them to fit the elbows and T to the wyes (see the photos if you're not sure what I mean). It's important that the gap created by the sleeves is always the same -- ideally you want the pieces so be flush to each other. When assembling, give everything a good whack with a rubber mallet to make sure it's a tight fit.
You can cement the sleeves for a more secure setup, but I decided to skip this step for now. I then assembled the entire contraption, and tested it to make sure it was the right height and that everything fit.
Step 4: Drill and Attach Plugs
In order to secure the tool holder to the workbench, I used PVC plugs with holes drilled in the middle. By attaching the plugs to the bottom of each wye, and then marking where the holes were, I was able to figure out where to drill so the plugs could then be screwed to the workbench. Then it was simply a matter of slipping the tool holder onto the caps, and viola! You can cement the caps if you want, but the whole thing seems pretty sturdy to me.
Step 5: Expand!
The tool holder can be expanded both horizontally and vertically to fit your needs!
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