Introduction: Simple Magnetic Tool Rack

Here's a quick and easy way to sort all your small tools into more convenient racks. It's likely you already have everything you need to make this - so it's very cheap.

The majority of tools are ferrous (i.e. magnetic) and so can be easily suspended with very small neodymium magnets.

All you will need:

►Any ferrous* tool

►Small neodymium magnets** (5mm diameter, ~3mm thickness)

►Wood strip, as long as you like

►Small wood screws

*If you want to use non-ferrous tools, you will have to install a magnet within the tool itself as well (check polarity).

**If you want to make this for bigger tools, use larger diameter magnets. HDD magnets will also work, though may crack with hard impacts.

Step 1: Drill the Holes

Mark out the holes for the magnets. I recommend placing your tools on the wood to check the spacing. Since I was making this for a set of identical tools, I just gauged the space and repeated this 4 more times. Do make sure the magnets are strong enough to hold that tool first.

Next, use a 5mm forstner bit to drill into the wood. If you do not have one, you can just use a standard 5mm drill bit but this will not work as well. Keep stopping to check the depth; the magnet must not protrude when fitted. If you go to deep, don't worry - this can be corrected later.

Step 2: Glue the Magnets

Now you can glue the magnets using hot glue or epoxy (for more strength). I recommend hot glue because you can easily correct any depth issues: simply put a bit more underneath. When dry, check they are secure by attaching the tools and taking them off.

Step 3: Mount It

Finally, use some suitable wood screws to mount your rack wherever you want, just make sure you don't split the wood.

You've now made a cheap and easy tool rack.

Comments

author
shereneleanne (author)2017-06-30

Just read posts about getting "same thing from Harbor Freight", yes, you can, but, salvagable magnets, ends & pieces of finishing wood, & screws are EVERYWHERE! Unless U R living in a utopian world where everything has been re-cycled,. C'mon guys, if we're gonna DIY, do it from scratch.

author
shereneleanne (author)2017-06-30

I've always wanted a magnetic tool rack for cutlery ( so handy & utilizing small space), why not for our other tools as well? Your design lends to limitless creative workspaces be they stationary or mobile ... I love it ... Thank You for revealing It's simplicity to the crazy over-thinker that is me!

author
JörgenBörg (author)2016-12-23

lthough great design, beware of metal waste particles/metaldust collecting on the tool wich will be also little magnetic. otherwise, good choise!

author
darrenhall (author)2016-03-01

Cool build - simple and tidy - - plus I don"t know about you guys but I always seem to lose my side cutters/wire cutters, not any more.

author
buck2217 (author)2015-06-26

Good idea. Why hadnt i thought of it!!

author
flyingiron (author)2015-03-12

If you make a small shelf on the bottom, you can put heavier tools. Good for chisels or other tools you don't want to fall down. Shelf holds weight and magnet holds them in.

author
Luziviech (author)2015-02-21

yea, that was my idea, too last week when i was tidyin up, but i wanted to put a line of metal strip (old torn stuff from palette transports) between to be able to vary the position, but the magnets (i got the same kind as you're usin) were not strong enough and i didnt want the magnets to come out of the wood one day, so i took screws instead, the way more easier solution for a rack.

author
bremus (author)2015-02-17

I always like DIY, but just in case you have a Harbor Freight near by.

You don't have to print it out, just write down the coupon code and give it to the person at the register.

Code is 63181360

magnetic-holder-0316.JPG
author
gravityisweak (author)bremus2015-02-20

YES! You can also take a photo of the coupon with your phone, or open the image right from this site and they will scan it right off your phone screen. Harbor freight is my favorite place for free stuff to use in other projects. Especially the flashlights with free LEDs.

author
bremus (author)gravityisweak2015-02-20

Absolutely. You may already know this site, but just incase, here's a link to a thread that is constantly being updated with HF coupons and deals.

http://slickdeals.net/f/1276399-harbor-freight-coupon-thread?v=1

author
gravityisweak (author)bremus2015-02-20

WOW THANKS! I didn't know about this site, I just took a look and BAM! Within a minute I had an awesome new coupon that my local Harbor Freight is going to hate me for! No purchase required free LEDs!!

NPR Worklight 4-1-15.jpg
author
bremus (author)gravityisweak2015-02-20

Yup, its awesome. Everytime I'm near a HF I run inside, look up a coupon and give the number to the cashier. I probably got over 100 free items last year.

author
tytower (author)2015-02-14

You could double the number by putting some more pointing down

Want to hold heavy items too , Break up old hard drives for the magnets in them . They hold up boltcutters

author
fjs (author)tytower2015-02-20

Thanks for the idea! Now Ive got two very powerfull magnets from and old broken HDD that I had lying around :)

author
Maker Spark (author)tytower2015-02-14

That's a great idea, I definitely have some of those HDD magnets lying around and they could hold a lot more weight.

author

For sure, just make sure you dont let your fingers get in between the tool and the magnet when you're putting it back. Also make sure you don't let the tool snap to the magnet suddenly because those suckers can shatter from the force of their own magnetism pulling something in.

author
gravityisweak (author)2015-02-20

Nice! The great thing about this is that you can use whatever material you want for the rack and make it appear as if the tools are sticking to it. When the tools are there the magnets are hidden. Very cool.

author
musicbymark (author)2015-02-18

Thanks for posting / funny timing. The past year I have been trying to make one w/ nice birdseye maple and walnut trim, drilling/insetting the magnets deep from BACK side, so they are right under the surface, hidden from view. Unfortunately, even when wood was only 1/16 or less thick, the 1/4" magnets weren't strong enough. I might buy a bunch of 1/2" and try it again. So attractive when magnets are hidden, but stronger magnets required obviously in my case.

author
indiaeger (author)2015-02-18

Thanks! I was looking for an easy access display for my hand tools for making jewelry, this fits the bill. ?

author
Maker Spark (author)indiaeger2015-02-18

Yes, it should work providing they are light and ferrous - test each with magnets before you make it.

author
pmshah (author)2015-02-17

The only ones I have found strong enough to hold such tools are 1/2" x 1/4" N52 or N42 magnets. I used ones from K & J. Fill the hole with hot glue. Stick the magnet to largish cellotape. Gently push it into the hole so that it flush with the surface. Let it cool. Peel off the tape.

author
Maker Spark (author)pmshah2015-02-18

What thickness of magnet are you using? The very thin magnets will not work, I used ~3mm (depth) magnets.

author
corieltauvus (author)2015-02-17

Don't worry about magnetizing tools — just knock them a few times on a vice or anvil and they quickly lose their magnetism

Good stuff. Have used 5 mm neodymium magnets to hold my keys on the fridge door for years, but just didn't expand the idea far enough! Will do this, definitely.

author
davebijoux (author)2015-02-17

Hi there. I once magnetized my pliers and from then on washers and nuts etc always stuck to them. Think carefully about doing that! Good work anyway. Thanks.

author
Maker Spark (author)davebijoux2015-02-17

Yes, that's true. It shouldn't be too bad though - they are not mounted directly from the tips.

author
kanetsu (author)2015-02-17

Very good, I'm in the middle of doing my wall mount rack and I will add magnets too. Thanks a lot.

author
dmadam (author)2015-02-17

Great idea. I have a magnet strip I bought for my kitchen knives but never thought of making one for my wood shop. Will definately make.

author
adamwatters (author)2015-02-15

simple and elegant storage solution - i like it!

author
OmarSamy2 (author)2015-02-14

Wow!..

author
seamster (author)2015-02-13

Great idea!

I need to add something like this to the side of my band saw, for the few small tools I need every time I swap the blade. Thanks for the inspiration!

author
trailogy (author)2015-02-13

Nice! Im going to use this.

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