How to Build a Tire Rack




I Autocross (and do the occasional time trial), have 2 trucks and 2 cars and live in southern Ohio. This means I have tires in varying states of use.

I recently bought a house and now I have room to make a tire rack in the garage.

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Step 1: Location, Size and Design

I choose the corner of the garage. I figured along the long side and not the back of the wall... because tires are kind of an eye sore and maybe I'd see less of them.

As for how big... I want room for a few set of snow tires if needed, a full set of race tires, and maybe a spare set of race tire.

My race tires are 315's for the front and 335's for the rear. Four 335's is like 50+ inches in width. This means my tire rack will be made 5 feet wide for some room and normal tires will have more per shelf.

Yes, per shelf. I want 3 shelves if possible. My garage has an eight foot ceiling. Since the tallest tire around my house is 28 inches I think this is possible. (I did not check the size of the big truck, but that truck gets an All-Terrain tire all the time.) The race tires are typically 25-26 inches tall.

So really the only design requirement is that the the whole thing is off the ground. With metal stand offs like the really expensive cabinets on Ultimate Garage or something.

Also, it would be really nice if the tire rack had some dual purpose -- it can be a regular shelf or something if I did not need all the room for tires.

Step 2: List of Parts and Tools

Some of these tools can be replaced with what ever you have-- this is just what I used.

- 45 1/4 x 4 inch lag screws
- 45 1/4 inch washers
- 3/16 drill bit
- 5/8 spade bit
- some clamps

- miter saw
- drill (I used an air drill)
- 7/16 socket (I used a 3/8 impact wrench)

- square (no not really a square, it really looks like a triangle but my dad always called it a square when I was a kid.)
- level (I had a small one and then bought a large one during this project)
- tape measure

- 2x4's -- I don't know how much I used. I could add it up. When I needed some I just went to the store. Maybe it was six or seven 12 foot 2x4s.

Step 3: First Cut Is the Deepest

After measuring a stack of four tires, and deciding on 5 feet wide, I laid two strips of wood on the ground. I set a few tires on them to see how far away from the wall I had to make the outer edge.

Minimum 20 inches. That number and the thought of having different sized tires some day I settled on 22 inches deep from the wall to the outer edge which will make one rail.

I'll put the the inner rail ten inches from the outer rail and my tires will have a nice happy home.

For those interested: I dreamed up this idea when I was looking through a warehouse/shop catalog and it had tire racks with two rails shaped like capitol T's stacked on top of one another. The rails were 10-12 inches apart depending on the model. These were all metal and were 200-300 dollars.

I am going to start at the bottom shelf and work my way up.

Cut two 22" boards and two 5' boards.

Bolt all these together with the lag screws.

I am skipping the obvious here and not telling you to use a square and clamps etc. I will tell you that I am using lag bolts because they are strong. I want shear strength because I might just throw tires around when I am tired and sore from racing.... and I don't want this to break one day when my friends are around. They would not stop making fun of me. Srsly, they would not. Do yourself a flavor too -- use lag screws.

I counter sunk all these lag bolts because I am not sure what I am putting next to this tire rack. Shelves, cabinets, or maybe a fake bike rack. If they stick out then I can not put a cabinet flush against the tire rack. Depending on your plans and goals you can decide on whether or not to counter sink the screws.

So, you can see it is a rectangle with an off set center piece. The bigger space is the 10 inch separation for the rails.

Step 4: Layer One Done

The first layer is done.

I used the 4" threaded pipe and a flange for the top and bottom. I was thinking about not using the bottom one because it lowers the overall cost by 3 dollars per foot... but my wife said it looked gay with out it. At that point I thought I should just not be cheap and just spend the extra money because the finished product will look better.

Attach the top flanges to the wood with plain ole dry wall screws.

Next, I leveled the front with by screwing the flanges and pipe up and down.

I leveled the back and marked the wall. Drilled 3 holes where the studs where and attached it withe lag screws.

Step 5: Middle Shelf

The construction is a lot like the first layer. The only thing I did different was the inner rail was put on after I attached the rack to the wall. It made it easier to attach the rack to the wall. (Lesson learned: Trial and Error 1, Brian 0)

I put uprights in between the rails. They are held in place by toe nailing a dry wall screw.

No real surprises on this step. Rinse, repeat.

Step 6: Final Shelf

This one went pretty quick.

I made the rectangle, attached it to the wall, put in the inner rail, cut and installed the uprights.

I loaded up all the wayward tires and wheels I had in the garage.


I measures up 30 inches from the middle shelf and that gave room for a 30 inch tire to be put on the middle rack and about a 29 inch tire for the top shelf.

On both sides all the lag bolt heads are hidden and flush. This means the shelves I will eventually put on the right side can be designed and built without any extra headaches.



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13 Discussions


9 years ago on Introduction

i need to make one of these. currently i have 1 set of wheels/tires in my utility closet, another set of wheels without tires in my basement den, and of course the 2 sets currently on the cars.


10 years ago on Introduction

This rack is awsome! AutoX/roadracers cheaper alternative to store bought systems! Thank you!


10 years ago on Introduction

i leave mine in the yard to expand my mosquito farm... seamonkey farms are so last decade. now i think a mosquito farm rack sounds nice.


11 years ago on Introduction

those donuts suck! i was late to school because the tire popped so, well just pop on the spare, we drove down the street with that and it popped! on a little Toyota! lol


Reply 11 years ago on Step 2

oh the three triangles... I used to be a tyrefitter, these racks look better built than most commercial ones (made from flimsy sheet steel) the only complaint I have is that the construction is a bit over complicated a few right angle joints may be easier to make.


11 years ago on Introduction

Yes it would. It is sturdy. I was happy to get back the floor space.


11 years ago on Introduction

nice rack, but not in that way. ahaha. i dont even have that many tires.