Introduction: High Volume Egg Storage Rack

Picture of High Volume Egg Storage Rack

Background

Those who keep chickens may be familiar with how a lot of eggs can end up in the kitchen very fast. Eggs don't actually need to be refrigerated so instead of filling up the fridge, you can just keep them out. I made this because we often run out of space to put eggs.

Solution

This Instructable will be about constructing a cheap, simple, wall mounted egg rack capable of holding lots of eggs. It's a very simple design which also keeps your eggs in order so you will always know which are the oldest eggs. The rack is on a slope so when you take eggs from the bottom, the rest just roll down so you'll never end up with an egg thats weeks old.

This Instructable will guide you through how I made it and then will give suggestions for design changes which I realised whilst making this one.

Step 1: Ideas and Planning

Picture of Ideas and Planning

The idea is that eggs roll between two pieces of wood. It is important that the pieces are far enough apart from each other to make sure the eggs sit on the rack stably but equally that they are not do far apart that the eggs could fall through the gap. I suggest making the gap just a bit smaller than the width of you smallest egg. That way you get the most support whilst knowing that your eggs aren't going to fall on the floor.

There needs to be a slope so the eggs can roll down so the oldest ones stay at the bottom. Obviously this can't be too steep or else the eggs might crack if they roll too fast or might fall off the bottom. Equally it needs to be steep enough for the eggs to roll of its own accord. To determine what angle was best, I got two pieces of wood (as shown above), put an egg on it and found the minimum angle required for rolling. I found that elevating end end up by about 1½" (38mm) was enough. That's an angle of about 2 degrees (see above diagram).

Step 2: What You'll Need

Picture of What You'll Need

This project was very quick and easy to make and cost me no more than £5 in materials.

Materials

Tools

  • Drill (for drilling clearance and pilot holes for the screws, also used for holes for threading the string through)
  • Saw (tenon or mitre saw are best as they are designed to make a more accurate straight cut than for example a panel saw)
  • Sand paper (for fine tuning joints)
  • Chisel optional

Step 3: Cutting the Rails

Picture of Cutting the Rails

Measurements

  • FRONT RAIL - 1000mm, staff beading, mitred
  • BACK RAIL - 976mm (1000mm - 2x12mm) staff beading, cut 90 degrees
  • SIDE RAILS - 85mm, staff beading, mitred and cut 90 degrees
  • WALL MOUNTS - 180mm, parting beading, cut 90 degrees

Obviously these measurements depend on how many eggs you want, egg size, what dimensions the wood is and personal preference.

Mark out the mitres with a 45 degree edge as shown in the third image. Make sure you mark it so the mitre cuts into the wood from the measurement mark. When you cut the mitre cut it so that the width of the blade cuts into the waste and not into the wood you going to use.

If the mitres you've cut are slightly off (as in the fifth image) you can quickly fix this by just sanding it off with some relatively rough sand paper.

Step 4: Joining It All Together

Picture of Joining It All Together

I decided to sink my 'back rail' into the side rails. To do this I cut two slots the width of the 'back rail' apart and chiseled the middle out just by gently tapping a mortice chisel with a wooden mallet.

Line up all the rails on a flat surface and adjust the joints to fit by sanding the down.

Once you are satisfied with the fit, drill holes for your wood screws. Both of my holes went through the 'side rails' so they were less visible: one each side through the mitre and one each side through the 'side rails' and into the 'back rail'. Put glue on the joints and screw together.

In the 4th image you can see that I had to add a piece of wood in the middle to bring middle to the same level as the ends of the 'side rails'.

The parting beading is used to attach the rack to the wall - this can either be done by screwing into the wall or using an adhesive. I wanted to have all this beading vertical and on the same level (see first image in "Finish and put it up"). This means that the holes need to be in different places: the middle bead in the centre, the left and right: half of your elevation (mine was 38mm meaning 19mm from the centre) refer to the 5th image. Mark out these holes and drill them drill through the 'side rails' and the extra wood in the middle making sure you don't drill into the screws connecting the rails together. Don't screw the wall mounts on yet though.

Step 5: Adding String

Picture of Adding String

I added string to make the rack look a bit nicer. It also keeps the two main rails together. The pattern I did is in the image above.

If you want to add string, decide what pattern you want before hand, drill the holes and string together. Make sure you know where the holes go first - I didn't and I had holes where I didn't want them and the pattern didn't work as I wanted it to. Thread the string through the holes, tighten and tied of with bulky knot each end that won't slip through the hole. The tension in the hole should pull the knots tight against the wood.

Step 6: Finish and Put It Up

Picture of Finish and Put It Up

Screw on the wall mounts, sand down any rough surfaces. Align the wall mounts so they are vertical - I did this on a tiled floor where it's easy to spot if they are not in line.

If you want to apply a finish, do so now.

Finally, stick or screw the rack up where you want it. Before you put your eggs on it test that it can take their weight - you don't want a dozen eggs cracked on the floor...

If you fill the entire rack up with eggs, make sure you check the bottom one hasn't gone off yet because it may have been there for a while! To to this, place it into cold water and if it floats to the surface it's probably off. Really fresh eggs should stay right on the bottom.

If you've found your eggs has filled up you may want to have a look at this Instructable on freezing eggs: How to Freeze Eggs

Step 7: Changes in the Design

Picture of Changes in the Design

My original plan was to have a closed mitre as in (1.) but screwed directly into the wall. I later chose not to do this as some longer eggs wouldn't fit on the rack as they'd be touching the wall. If you have thicker beading or indeed turn the beading I used on its side, you might have enough room for the long eggs.

1. Closed mitre

All the 'rails' could be mitred together and the 'wall mounts' attached directly to this.

I couldn't do this as I didn't have wood screws which were short enough.

2. Bigger wood

Have two wider pieces of wood joined together by dowels. This could then be directly attached to the wall by d-rings.

3. Steampunk

I was thinking of making a copper pipe version instead. The 3rd image is pretty self explanatory...

Please feel free to put any photos of what you've made, suggestions, other ideas (...and typos?...) in the comments.

Thanks for having a look at my Instructable.

Comments

valkgurl (author)2016-04-25

LOL---So glad to know I am NOT the only one with far too many eggs this instant--and half of the hens are not even laying in the coop for some reason! Bowls and baskets and pie pans of eggs Oh My! Need to send some off to friends and freeze some. Voted for you!

theredbryophyte (author)valkgurl2016-05-05

Yup! Eggs can definitely pile up!

Pavlovafowl (author)2016-04-21

I've got a hundred eggs on my kitchen table at the moment and am just going out to collect today's batch, so your idea could come in mighty useful. Not only do I neither wash nor refrigerate eggs but when I get too many, I freeze them. They will keep for at least a year and you can freeze yolks, whites, yolks and whites together and when they defrost you can use them in all the ways you would use fresh eggs. Nice idea and good luck with the competition! All the very best from Normandie, Sue

Thanks. So do you crack the eggs first or just freeze them whole?

Crack them. I should do an instructable maybe because it is useful when you get more than you can store in a rack. My hens will probably all go broody and/or off lay and into moult at the same time this Summer so it is good to have a whole load in the freezer. I think you've got the winner idea here, the main problem with egg racks is you have to keep moving the older ones forward so this is a great hack. All the best from Normandie, Sue

For Pavlovafowl's Instructable on freezing eggs:

https://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-Freeze-Eggs/

Aaww thanks for that - I've done the same on my Instructable with a link to yours - so people with chickens laying feverishly can have their storage covered. I found out I missed a few in the garden this morning - with the patter of tiny claws - one hatched at the moment but 5 eggs a cheeping! All the best Sue

BettyF18 (author)2016-04-21

Looks interesting. I never knew that it wasn't necessary to refrigerate eggs?

DylanH14 (author)BettyF182016-04-21

Eggs from the store do need to be refrigerated. If the eggs are coming from your back yard and you haven't washed them they still have the 'bloom' on them which seals the pores keeping the egg safe from intruding bacteria (and moisture loss) and your eggs should be good out of the fridge for a couple months. http://www.motherearthnews.com/real-food/how-to-store-fresh-eggs-zmaz77ndzgoe.aspx?PageId=1

theredbryophyte (author)DylanH142016-04-21

Good point made on which eggs, thanks. I also read somewhere that if you start refrigerating your eggs, you can't 'unrefrigerate' them for some reason.

theredbryophyte (author)BettyF182016-04-21

I was a bit surprised when I first found out but if you think about it, chickens keep their eggs warm when they hatch them out and they don't go off. The article below explains some eggs stuff: http://www.businessinsider.com/should-you-refrigerate-eggs-2014-7?IR=T

azizkres (author)2016-04-20

Interesting, nice instructable.

theredbryophyte (author)azizkres2016-04-20

thanks

parisusa (author)2016-04-20

Great solution! Voted!

theredbryophyte (author)parisusa2016-04-20

Thank you

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