One issue I've had with cooking lately is that I have trouble locating my spices. My cabinet is quite small, so reaching for the right spices can be a hassle. Today, I'll be building a spice rack. The design is flexible, so anyone can extend this to hold an arbitrary number of spices. For requirements, all we will need are a laser cutter, and 1/4" plywood.
Step 1: Preparing Illustrator File
I measured the average size of all my spices and concluded that 2.5 inches long will hold most if not all my spices. I have around 12-15 spices that would fit on this rack, so I am making 3 platforms that will hold 4 spices each. I measured all the dimensions across and determine how high I wanted each spice too be. Each platform is divided symmetrically across the depth of the spice rack. I've provided the Illustrator file above for anyone to modify and accommodate the size to fit their spices at home.
Step 2: Laser Cut Illustrator File
Next, we load the plywood into the laser cutter and prepare the Illustrator file. Make sure all you preferred sizes are correct and that the file is in the right format. Check for the proper cutting types and that the wood is fully cut before removing. At this stage, I confirmed if I like the size of the spice rack.
Step 3: Assemble
I made the design of the spice rack so that I would not use any glue and could assemble it using only compression joints. I sanded the plywood to remove any burn marks and smooth out the platforms' edges. At this stage, you can add a stain to wood to give it a more professional vibe. Afterwards, I used a soft rubber mallet to slowly press each platform into the sides' groove. If the fit is too tight or too loose, adjust the size of the groove in the illustrator file or adjust the intensity of your laser cutter.
Step 4: Fill With Your Spices
Viola! Now you have your own homemade spice rack. I tested my design by filling it with all my essential spices. As I buy more exotic and decadent spices, I'll probably go back and edit my illustrator file to accommodate for more spices (add more platforms or extend the length). For now, it serves me well. Happy cooking, fellow chefs!