Introduction: Wall Mounted Valet
This is my first project on here so bare with me.....
I began thinking of a way to hang my work clothes for the week after ironing them at the weekend. I was using a normal clothes hanger off the frame work around my room but it was scratching all the paintwork off. Remembering in years gone by that valet stands were used to hold clothes, I thought about getting one of them but without the floor space there was only one option, get one for the wall. Unfortunately, those that hung on the wall proved to be quite expensive, so I set about making my own on the cheap. With the whole project costing me about £4 (GBP).
I should also warn you that for the vast majority of the time I didn't actually measure anything, it's done by eye. I wanted to go for more of a rustic, natural look and I thought by not measuring it would achieve this easily....and I think it did. I'll try to give measurements where possible, so you can make one to these specifications; personally I like to change things as I go along to make things unique.
3 pallet deck boards
1 pallet stringer (what the deck boards sit on)
7 4 x 50mm screws
4 5 x 50 mm screws
6 40 mm nails
1 M8 (8 mm) threaded rod about 165 mm in length
1 M8 butterfly nut
Acrylic sealant (you could use a strong glue)
Bosch All Rounder; wood cutting blade and delta sanding pads
Drill and drill bits
Pocket hole jig
Step 1: Cutting and Shaping the Shirt Hanger
I was given a load of wooden pallets recently after asking (or more likely begging) for them. After dismantling using a garden fork to prise apart the planks from the stringer and taking out the nails, I was left with a load of wood to use on this project. Having said that you won't even use half of a single pallet, so you've got plenty to use for other projects!
I started by taking the stringer from the pallet (that's the large bit of wood that the planks sit on). Having a normal coat hanger from my wardrobe I got a rough shape and length of the hanging section, drawing on the wood in pencil. I cut the wood length wise (you'll need another bit of this wood later on, so save it) before trimming it to the right shape. I used a jigsaw to get the shape and where I wasn't quite happy with it I sanded it down, using my Bosch all rounder with the delta sanding pads (I'm sure you could use another make or get away with an orbital sander). I only sanded down for the shape so rough sand paper was used, the roughest I had. You can get it smooth once your happy, giving it rounded edges.
Step 2: Trouser Hanger and Backbone
The trouser section is cut to the same length as the shirt hanger. This can be measured or just put the shirt hanger on a plank and draw a line where it comes up to and cut there. Once you have the length you have to measure the plank and determine where to cut it, you need to cut a third of it off along the longest side (as seen in the picture). Now you need to make two small connectors 40 mm in length and the same width of the bigger bit of the plank you just cut. Before you go any further this has to sanded till smooth and rounding all the edges. Now assemble as in the picture....and there's the trouser hanger.
The back bone is what connects the trouser hanger to the shirt hanging section. This is cut from another plank to about 370 mm. Sand and round off edges. Now the pocket hole jig is fixed to the wood by a g-clamp and drill with 10 mm drill bit about half way in, until there's enough room so the heads of the screws wouldn't be able to felt when you run your hand along it. Now get a smaller drill bit, preferably a 3 mm and drill from the end at slight angle to get through to the groove you just created with the hole jig. Repeat this for both ends.
Step 3: Assembly
Using 4 of the 4 x 50 mm screws, screw in from the backbone side and pierce the section your going into in its centre, then you can use the 3 mm drill bit again to prepare for the screw. Remember that the pocket holes are meant to be going on the back of the valet stand so you can't see them so ensure that the backbone is being attached to the thicker section. Screw the screws the rest of the way in and then the main section is assembled as per photo.
Step 4: The Wall Mount
Now the wall mount has to be created. Using the remainder of the stringer from earlier. Cut it to the length of about 130 mm in length. Now you will have to draw on to one side the shape of the top of the shirt hanger, so it sits in half of the the wood, creating what I would describe as an upside down sofa (see the photos to see what I mean). The depth of this depends in the thickness of the stringer you used, but the top section should essentially 'fit like a glove'. Sand down till smooth and round the edges.
Sitting the top section find the centre and drill all the way through the top into the shirt hanger section with a 3 mm drill bit. Now flesh the holes out to fit the M8 rod, I used a 9 mm bit for the shirt hanger and a 10 mm bit for the top. You need to go quite deep through the majority of the shirt hanger section to accommodate the rod. Inject some acrylic sealant or glue into the hole and hammer in the rod, it should be quite tight. The hole for the top section can be sanded down using a Dremel (but it's not 100% necessary), but the rod should glide through easily.
You need to make a wall plate from some left over plank for the top section to be fitted on, of course the exact measurements vary depending on the size of the stringer. The wall plate should be 10 mm taller and 50 mm wider than the top section. Sand down and smooth the wall plate. Pre-drill hole in each corner about 8 mm in from each edge to allow to wall attachment, using a 3 mm drill bit. Find the central position on the wall plate for the top section to be fitted onto and screw together using the remaining 3 4 x 50 mm screws as per photo.
Step 5: Varnishing and Fitting
Once assembly of the sections is complete then the finished pieces can be varnished. I used a nice yacht varnish that I bought for £1 (GBP) and barely used a quarter of a tin. I prepared the wood using white spirit and left to dry and then varnished, sanding with the finest sand paper between coats. If you can hand the pieces this is ideal. I gave each piece 2 coats and that was enough but may depend on the varnish you use (follow the instructions on the tin!).
To ensure that the holes went on the right place on the wall I done a rubbing of the back section of the wall mount showing where the holes were. Obviously you need to use the reverse side so it matches up right, using a spirit level and masking tape attach the sketching to the wall where the valet is to be fitted. If you fold the bottom section of the paper to create a gutter it'll catch the majority of the debris. Drill into the wall, I used a 9 mm drill bit and insert wall plugs, screw in the wall mount using the 4 5 x 50 mm screws through the pre drilled holes you done earlier. Put the rod through the hole on the wall mount and screw on the M8 butterfly nut and your wall mounted valet is complete!
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