I acquired two 5.5' wide red oak cabinets from a house that just had their kitchen remodeled. They are only 12" deep and make them ideal storage for a garage shop as you don't have to sacrifice a lot of shop space to create a lot of surface.
I wanted to add whiteboard space to my shop for a host of reasons, but didn't want to sacrifice open wall space, so I came up with a quick and easy solution to repurpose these shelves as new whiteboard space. Check out how I did it here:
Step 1: Repurpose Old Cabinets (or Build Sliding Cabinets)
If you don't have old cabinets, you'll have to go the old tried and true DIY method of actually building some shelves - this can work to your advantage as you can make them more bespoke to your space, add storage, and add whiteboard space.
As you can see in the GIF that these cabinets have sliding doors. If you don't have cabinets that have these types of doors and you don't need to make new ones, you can also look into whiteboard paint!
MATERIALS (Assuming you already have shelves)
- 1 x 4' x 8' x 1/8" White Hardboard (about $13 at Lowes / Home Depot)
- Shallow cabinets (can be made from 3/4" plywood!)
- SAWSTOP Contractors 30” Saw: https://amzn.to/2Luh91q
You can just as easily get away with a circular saw for this project instead of a table saw - it's just that simple.
Step 2: Remove Old Sliding Doors
Start by removing your doors - these sliders pop right off - they're so ugly - I can't believe anyone ever had cabinets like these in their home. BTW - these were Red Oak - I primed and painted them a nice blue color that matched my kitchen (for no real reason) because of how hideous the red oak was.
Step 3: Determine Your Cabinet Size
Measure your individual slider - just length and with - no big deal.
Step 4: Rip Down Your 1/8" White Hardboard
Using a table saw, circular saw with a straight edge, or a track saw, cut down your white hard board to proper dimensions. I have a table saw so this took about 3 minutes total - white hardboard cuts very easily but is very strong. Test to make sure your cuts fit (and crack a smile!).
Step 5: Measure and Drill Holes for Sliding
You'll need holes in each door to insert your finger to slide open. I used a scrap piece of plywood to mark and measure a hole the exact same distance inward from the bottom and side and used my punch to mark a hole. I then repeated this process but on the opposite side for the sister cabinet.
My cabinets were divided into four sections, each with two sliders, so your holes should be in the same position but mirrored so they both end up on the outside. Then I used a 3/4" forsner bit to drill out holes - again this drills very easily.
Step 6: Hang Your New Whiteboard Sliders
Now you can just mount your new sliders and have a ton of whiteboard space!
I love these - it is SOOOO simple in design but so practical in function. It took me a few days to come to this solution, so I hope sharing it with you on this website helps spark some ideas on how to make your shop more efficient.
So far, I've used the panels to list out future projects, steps for projects mid-build, and then post production needs on my videos.
Thanks for reading - make sure you check out the video in the first step on my YT channel!
See you around!