You have your long term food storage program going, and now you’re in the process of organizing all your items. The smaller items are easy to store. Grocery store 12 ounce cans, #10 cans of freeze-dried food, and home-canned jars of food all fit nicely on the average pantry shelves. No problem, right?
Well, what about those 3, 5, and 6 gallon buckets of bulk food items such as wheat, beans, pasta, flour, sugar, etc. They can weigh 40 to 50 pounds each and no standard shelves will support more than one or two at a time. What do you do?
I constructed some monster shelves that I could put dozens of loaded food buckets on, and not ever have to worry about them collapsing. These monster shelves are made out of 2″x4″s, and that is not unusual in itself. But one detail that I added is a little unusual. Let’s look at some photos.
The above photo gives you an overall view of what these shelves look like. Each shelf is a 2″x4″ frame that is 24″ deep and 12′ long. On top of the frame is a 3/4″ piece of plywood that serves as the top of the shelf.
The above photo shows another view of the shelves.
The above photo shows the most important detail. It shows how I placed a 2″x4″ piece vertically between each shelf and attached it to the main 2″x4″ vertical support for the shelves. Let’s look at the final photo.
The above photo shows that I have placed one of these short vertical supports between each of the shelves, and ran them down to the ground. So, the total weight of each shelf is always supported and the load is transfered directly to the ground.
If you are wondering, the vertical supports are 4′ apart on center. So, for a 12′ wide shelf, there are vertical supports on each end, and two supports in the middle, also spaced at 4′ apart on center. That is a total of four vertical supports for the 12′ long shelves.
If you build something like this, you will never have to worry about your shelves collapsing. These shelves have been up for years, and at times have been full, which means they have had hundreds and hundreds of pounds placed on them. No problems ever.