Hidden Fridge Gap Slide-Out Pantry

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Intro: Hidden Fridge Gap Slide-Out Pantry

In this Instructable, you will learn how to steal some much needed kitchen storage, and not take up any more room in doing so.

I live in a small apartment with an even smaller kitchen that is lacking in the storage department. So I needed a new cabinet, and since I do NOT have permission to put big holes in the walls for more cabinetry, I thought that the 4.5 inch gap between my refrigerator and the wall could work.

I am now able to just pull the pantry out and grab whatever I need and slide it back into hiding. I love how much storage it actually has and that it does not take up any additional space.

Oh and the process will be much faster and less sweat inducing if you have an electric saw and not just a hacksaw.

Step 1: Materials

The necessary materials that I used for this project are listed below, but you can easily vary the measurements.

  • (1) 24" x 48" x 0.75" wood board
  • (1) 5" x 8' x 0.5" wood boards
  • (6) 24" x 4" x 0.5" wood boards
  • (1) 24" x 4" x 0.75" wood board for the base
  • (1) handle with attaching hardware
  • (2) 3" caster wheels
  • (6) 25" x 0.25" wooden dowels
  • wood glue
  • wood screws (screws for wood, not sure wooden screw exist haha)

Step 2: Framing the Pantry

Thankfully I didn't have to do much cutting, I cut the big 5" x 8' x 0.5" board in half creating two equal 4 foot pieces. These two 4 foot pieces are the sides of the pantry, but they were too wide so it would not fit in the small gap. I had to cut them down to be 4 inches.

For the bottom shelf, use the 24" x 4" x 0.75" piece

For the top shelf, use one of the 24" x 4" x 0.5" pieces

Now that all of the wood for the pantry is cut, time to glue and join them with screws, which is pretty self explanatory.

Step 3: Shelving

With the remaining five 24" x 4" x 0.5" wood pieces, I spaced them out roughly like this:

(from top to bottom)

4.5"

6.5"

6.5"

7.5"

9.25"

11.25"

Then drill the holes for the wood dowels to slide through for each shelf, and cut the wood dowels to 25.5".

The space between the shelf and dowels depends on the content you plan on storing.

Step 4: The Finishing Touches

Let's start with adding the wheels first:

  • locate the center of the bottom board and space the wheels out evenly on the board.
  • since I didn't want the bolts for the wheels to show through the board, I used hot glue to apply the wheels to the board.

Now it's just the handle that is standing between you and your new sliding pantry:

  • stand the pantry up on the wheels and determine where the handle should be based on your preference/height,
  • once you have the height you want, locate the center of the side panel and drill 2 holes that align with the handle.
  • use the attaching hardware and attach the handle

Enjoy using your newly acquired kitchen storage.

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160 Discussions

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m.hutchinson

3 years ago on Introduction

To securely attach the caster wheels to the bottom, you could use tee nuts (sometimes called t-nuts) to provide a tight threaded screw mount. They are available at most hardware and home improvement stores.

To use a tee nut, simply drill a hole as large as the center stem, then place the tee nut prongs down in the hole from the top of the board. Now thread a machine thread (not a wood screw) screw up from the caster wheel base plate. As you tighten the screw, the prongs will bite into the wood, and keep it from turning. They are about a dollar for pack of four, the #10-24 size should be about right, along with a properly sized 24 thread screw or bolt...

0f467041-2797-4257-a2f1-de6807ebf85c_300.jpg
2 replies

He didn't want the look of the screws. This would be a huge eye sore. Additionally, the caster would need to be big enough to host a sized 24 threaded bolt. The wheels he has don't have that, and most in the size range wouldn't either. And I can't see a way for a small caster to have just one attachment point. Most have 4 screw holes, in this size range, not one big 'ol gaping hole for a 1/4" bolt, and they'd likely need more than one.

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m.hutchinsonVeganJuneDad

Reply 2 months ago

24 is the thread pitch (24=course, 32=fine), not bolt size. #10's fit my casters just fine (#10 are smaller, the casters could use up to #12 or 1/4"). Proper length screws will be flush with the wood. Indeed, casters this size have four holes, spaced in a rectangular pattern. You would use two or four per caster, depending on how much additional strength you needed/wanted to add. There are other ways of attaching, this was just another suggestion.

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Katie5757

3 years ago on Step 4

Check out the manufacturers recommendation about ventilation round your fridge, and ensure you dont have heat dissipating in to the contents of your pantry. It could be an incubator for bacteria and mould in other than dry goods.

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godson1952Katie5757

Reply 3 years ago on Introduction

GOOD IDEA BUT ALOS HEAT RISES UPWARD NOT SIDE WAYS HERE IN THE GREAT NORTH.I THINK IT IS A GREAT IDEA.BUT LIKE YOU SAID CHECK IT BEFORE DOING ANYTHING LIKE THIS FOR HEAT CAN CAUSE A FIRE,ANOTHER GOOD IDEA,CHECK BEFORE ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN.

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Katie5757godson1952

Reply 3 years ago on Introduction

I felt the sides of my fridge, and they are both much warmer than the room temperature. Not a good storage area for other than dry goods. The temperature however is no where near threatening of fire, except if the top isnt ventilated. It is more likely that your fridge just implode with the loading.
It is worth double checking what the manufactuer advises.
Well I am in the great south (New Zealand) and I expect physics is the same in the Great North. You have fridges up there??

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MarioL111Katie5757

Reply 6 months ago

Yepper, but ours turn clockwise. To anyone asking about heat: if the sides of your fridge are that hot then you have other things to worry about besides spice storage. My 25 cubic foot side-by-side Whirlpool requires only 1/2" clearance for the top and sides and 1" for the back.

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i just dont think it would get that warm in there, it is not tight, there will b some ventilation . maybe i'm wrong . i hope so :)

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gulonraidgodson1952

Reply 2 years ago

godson1952, the fridge will not produce enough heat to cause a fire. Even basic untreated wood has an ignition temperature of around 450-500 degrees.

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malloccogodson1952

Reply 3 years ago on Introduction

Godson, no reason to get dumb and cocky. Fridges have condensing coils either underneath or behind. If the coils are underneath heat comes up around every side of the unit. Most newer models are like this. Rear condensing models have the coils on the back of the unit. In your mind, these models wouldn't have issues because heat rises; but rising warm air must be replaced adequately or a vacuum effect (not a true vacuum) could occur. Placing anything on the side of the fridge could slow or stop airflow; causing the unit to overheat. Katie's advice is a lot more well-founded then you think.

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Katie5757lime3D

Reply 3 years ago on Introduction

Read previous posts....been there discussed that. Your statement is INCORRECT!!!!

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RebeLeeousKatie5757

Reply 2 years ago

I have a store-bought version of one of these. I've had it for years and never had a problem. Store-bought ones wouldn't exist if they were a fire hazard..

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namoraRebeLeeous

Reply 2 years ago

You mean like car seats that fail or air bags that maim? I have never seen these in stores so maybe there is an issue but we don't look for the Good House Keeping seal anymore so things aren't tested until after people die and the lawsuits start. It is the overbearing government dontcha know?

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RebeLeeousnamora

Reply 2 years ago

Also, those are malfunctioning products, your comparison doesn't work.

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RebeLeeousnamora

Reply 2 years ago

I've never ever heard of a fire started because of one of these being next to a fridge...Until there is a fire, the argument that it's a fire hazard holds little to no weight. It was uncalled for, for certain individuals to chew out people over what is ultimately just speculation. It is unfair to Boston09 who created this instructable.

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lime3DKatie5757

Reply 3 years ago on Introduction

Katie, I challenge you to produce a SINGLE photograph of a refrigerator with vents on the side.

standard-topmount-transpare[1].gif
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KimoM1lime3D

Reply 2 years ago

look at the bottom

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JenL5lime3D

Reply 3 years ago

Read what was written. No one was saying fridges vent out the sides, it was said they vent either out the back or bottom. Besides, all your doing is bickering. Wouldn't it be more productive to consider possible solutions, or adjustments so that the idea still works safely & effectively? I think the idea is a great one. I'm also glad someone brought up ventilation as something to keep in mind. I'm definitely going to try a variation of this in my kitchen. I'm wondering if making it without a solid back might help with ventilation. Maybe having dowels to hold stuff in on both sides, which would make things accessable from both sides as well, something that would be beneficial for a gap that isn't beside a wall like my kitchen has.
Either way, great idea & great modification suggestions.