This is not my idea.  My grandfather made many for himself and friends.  Possibly not his idea either, but as he past it on, so shall I.

It is a good way to organize small bits and pieces and get them high enough to be out of the way but still be seen and accessed.

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials

Step 2: Center Spinny Piece

Picture of Center Spinny Piece

The center spinny piece works best if it balances out.  You could make it 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, whatever sides but I made mine 4 sides.  I glued and screwed two two by fours together to make one four by four.  Make your center spinny piece long enough to hold as many containers as you like.  I mounted the lids to the center spinny piece with two smalish screws per lid.  Make sure to leave enough space between the lids to spin the containers to unscrew them from the lids.  Also leave enough space at the ends to clear the side pieces so that the center spinny piece can spin, otherwise it would not be a spinny piece.  I just used two biggish screws to mount and be the axle of the center spinny piece, I think #10 x 3". One each end. I put one washer on the outside of the side piece, to keep the screw head from pushing into the soft plywood and two washers between the side piece and the center spinny piece to reduce friction. You may want to wait till step four, while you are putting the mounting pieces and side pieces together.

Step 3: Side Pieces

Picture of Side Pieces

I made my side pieces from half inch thick plywood.  Again dimensions are up to you.  Make sure that it will hold the center spinny piece and the attached containers far enough from the attachment pieces that it will remain spinny.  Making sure the spinny piece stays spinny is important.

Step 4: Mounting Pieces

Picture of Mounting Pieces

I used two two by fours cut slightly longer than the center spinny piece, so that once everything is assembled, there would be room for a couple of washers on each end of the center spinny piece to reduce friction.  Once I was happy with fit and clearances, I glued and screwed the mounting pieces to the side pieces.  Also this is where I mounted the center spinny piece described in step 2.  I just used two biggish screws to mount and be the axle of the center spinny piece, I think #10 x 3". One each end. I put one washer on the outside of the side piece, to keep the screw head from pushing into the soft plywood and two washers between the side piece and the center spinny piece to reduce friction.

Step 5: Mount to the Wall/ceiling

Picture of Mount to the Wall/ceiling

Once you are happy that your spinning organizer works, it is time to put it almost out of reach.  I found it best to mount on a wall using longish screws thru the mounting pieces into the wall studs.  Once again making sure the center spinny piece with containers remains spinny.

Step 6: Use It and Enjoy.

Picture of Use It and Enjoy.

Now it is time to load the containers with all sorts of bits and pieces.  Try and balance it out or all the heavy pieces will end up on the bottom.  Now when you need something in the spinning almost out of reach organizer all you do is reach up, spin it till the container is on the bottom and unscrew the container.


matrix32176 (author)2015-04-09

My grandfather had several of these of different sizes. He use baby food jars for the tiny screws and such. To help keep the lids from cracking from weight, you could use washers with the mounting screws to help distribute the pressure better. But great ible. Thank you for keeping the idea alive.

luckas1950 (author)2014-12-15

kz1 (author)2011-11-03

Me grad father's basement workbench had individual jars attached to the underside of shelves. I've wanted to do something like this except use discarded conveyor belt on either end of the wood spars; attached like the seats on a fairis wheel for some serious vertical storage. A motor added to it would be pretty neat too! If I ever get 'round to it, I'll post it where did I put that conveyor belt........oh yeah, recyling fire hose would work too.

CHARLESCRANFORD (author)kz12011-11-04

I have seen something similar in a baker's oven. Also Wall-E had a cool rotating storage thing in his "house". Can't wait to hear how it turns out.



sunshiine (author)2011-10-11

This is awesome! My husband makes organizers like this. It sure saves the space. You can find things easily! Love it! Have a great day!

lpate1 (author)2011-09-22

this would be excellent as a spice jar holder if you made a mini version!

sweepmo (author)lpate12011-10-05

I thought the same thing immediately! You could even cut out a few steps and purchase an under-the-cabinet paper towel rack, and replace the dowel with a square one. And use baby food jars. So excited to do this!

CHARLESCRANFORD (author)sweepmo2011-10-06

I love it when one idea starts another, starts another, starts another. Let me know how it turns out.

lhouse (author)lpate12011-09-22

Yea, would need a hex or octagonal mounting beam though, for higher capacity and less wasted space.

of course identification would be fun if you go more than 8 sides...

mysss (author)lhouse2011-09-25

That would be awesome if you used a miter saw and built a 6- or 8- sided base. (Or any other number....)

delese03 (author)lhouse2011-09-24

Nah just a sharpy marker on the bottem of the jars

lmiqueli (author)2011-10-01

I think this would be a great project for my sewing/craft room. I have lots of buttons, snaps and other little bits that need organizing! Thanks for sharing!

wingartist (author)2011-09-25

Good ideal for a vertical direction and using bins, kind of like a carousel!

delese03 (author)2011-09-24

I'm thinking of making a version for my kids rooms. perfect for all the little stuff.

WPee (author)2011-09-23

BEFORE we hang it on the wall --- hit it with a can of your favorite spray paint
:-) :-)

My guess is most of us do NOT paint our projects because we are not quite sure IF we have put ALL of our finishing touches/pieces on the project....until after we have used it for a then we are off on other projects. :-( :-0

The military paints 'anything that doesn't move' either GRAY or GREEN.
(sorry NAVY guys --- Blue is just too colorful for garage projects)

My favorite color is RED...somethimes YELLOW... or PURPLE...But don't use GRAY, GREEN, NAVY BLUE...those colors are already spoken for !

deathnotx101 (author)2011-09-22

Gonna make mine out of plastic animal cracker bear-shaped plastic containers :)

I would like to see a finished photo of that. Especially if you had them all facing the same way.

lhouse (author)2011-09-22

Probably not the best idea to be mounting these with PLASTIC lids if ANYTHING expected to be heavy, such as the glass container itself, fully loaded jar with screws, bolts, coinage and etc, or fully canned foods. The wear and tear would eventually rip the lid apart.

CHARLESCRANFORD (author)lhouse2011-09-23

I used 780g plastic peanut butter containers. I have a couple full of bolts, no worries. The lids take a 1 1/2 turn to go on. Most glass containers I have only take 1/4 turn. I was a little concerned because I only had enough smallish screws to use two per lid. The lids flexed a bit and felt flimsy, but when the containers are fully screwed on, they stiffen the lids up and feel secure. I admit I do stand cautiously to the side while spinning it, especially with the sound of all the pieces rattling around.

de_evans (author)2011-09-22

Wow, this takes me back. I was about 5 or 6 and trying to "make" one of these like the one in Daddy's workshop, but nailing the baby food jars under the (nice) shelf with only one nail. And making a real big ugly mess. I was so upset because the jars just spun around. So my Dad showed my how I had to put TWO nails in each jar lid - under Mother's NICE shelf. Then we were both in trouble, but so worth it. Great memories, and thanks for the sophisticated spinning version.

vincent7520 (author)2011-09-22

wise & cool !

daniel19 (author)2011-09-22

very nice

lalexander (author)2011-09-22

a miniature version could be made from empty medication bottles.

Archergal52 (author)2011-09-22

Clever and useful and awesome!

patmac (author)2011-09-22

I've seen the jar storage before, but never on a spinner. It's a terrific idea with so many possibilities! Thanks!

aespie-whitburn (author)2011-09-22

That is a great idea. I should build one

kill-a-watt (author)2011-09-19

Yea, I've seen this before, except made of baby food jars.

My dad just attached his jars to the bottom of the rafters, but a friend's dad did exactly what you did.

I think the "see-through jar" part is important, no labels are needed.

Thanks for the flashback.

rickyspears (author)2011-09-19

Great Instructable Charles! Thanks for sharing. I could envision several of these being installed from the ceiling rafters too instead of the wall.

I look forward to seeing more Instructables from you in the future!

Thanks Ricky. I have been looking forward to another instructable from you. You are probably like me and have lots of ideas just waiting to post. I built this and took the pics to post and took over a year to get around to it. I am going to try and post at least one every two months.

spradlinb (author)2011-09-19

My biggest question is, what's the "spinney piece" you mention here? I don't see it listed on the materials step, but it seems to be a pretty essential part of the process. Is it just a really long bolt through the 2x4s? Or something else from the hardware store? It looks like a great end result, I'm just scratching my head on what you use as the axle. Thanks for any clarification!

tinyinkling (author)spradlinb2011-09-19

It looks as if there are undocumented lag screws, probably with washers, which connect the "spinny piece" (axle -- the 2x2x4) to the ends (one on each end, centered in the axle). With a pair of washers inside and outside on each end (8 total) and not tightening these down much, it should spin.

You could use all kinds of different things; bolts, threaded rods, fancy bearings, or even go all out and have it motorized. I just used wood screws. As you pointed out you don't want to tighten too much. I tighten mine so it takes a little bit of effort to spin. If you have too little friction, the side with the most weight in the containers ends up at the bottom.

Thanks for your reply.

Sorry left that bit out. I just used two biggish screws, I think #10 x 3". One each end. I put one washer on the outside of the side piece, to keep the screw head from pushing into the soft plywood and two washers between the side piece and the center spinny piece to reduce friction. I will add this to clear up my instructable. Thanks for pointing this out.

Nostalgic Guy (author)2011-09-19

An excellent idea, I have been looking for way to squeeze a bit more space out of my little workshop this is perfect.
I to look forward to seeing what you come up with next.
I have not given any patches yet so the one I am sending you will be the first :-)

Hisart (author)2011-09-19

My Dad has several racks like this but he used the larger size baby-food jars. The boards are mounted on a hinges and swing up between the rafters in the unfinished basement workshop. This makes them outta sight and for those of us that are well over six foot, outta head space! When you need something just turn the latch and swing down the board, everything is eye level and easily accessible.

Thanks for the larger version, will have to tell Dad about this upgrade!

jessyratfink (author)2011-09-19

This is very neat! I would have never though to do anything like that. Makes me want something similar for my sewing stuff. :)

About This Instructable




Bio: Professionally I have been a summer camp counselor, a Draftsman/designer, salesperson, bicycle mechanic, laminate flooring machine mechanic, teacher, and designer of the OP Loftbed ... More »
More by CHARLESCRANFORD:Recycle Bin Hiding PlaceFloating Shelves From Scrap WoodFix a Speaker by Replacing the Foam Edge
Add instructable to: