I’ve mentioned Stanley’s 25 compartment organizers before, most recently in a Father’s Day promo post. These removable-bin organizers are incredibly versatile and flexible to use, but there’s a downside – they’re addictive. It’s hard to buy just one.
That leads to a problem. If you own more than a few of these Stanley organizers, or the look-alikes that are sold by Harbor Freight, you will probably run into storage and accessibility issues. I know I have.
In the past, I would stand most of my 5 organizers vertically on a wire shelf. Problem: very small parts, such as size #2 washers, tend to travel between compartments. Now that I have 9 of these organizers, standing them up isn’t a neat way to store them. That, and I moved my wire shelving units out of my main workspace.
Stacking them isn’t a very elegant or efficient solution either. These organizers have easy-grab handles, but they are designed to nest neatly on top of each other, or at least the Stanley ones I have. I can’t speak about the HF ones – I saw those in-store once and thought they were too flimsy for my liking. This means that you can’t access a mid-stack organizer very easily, and forget about getting a bottom one without first moving the other boxes around.
That leads me to show you the project Ken shared with us – a neat and elegant way to store plenty of these organizers beneath a workbench.
I love the HF version of the Stanley storage trays. And yes, we bought a few Stanleys to compare, and yes, they ARE better than HF, but not enough to justify the price IMO (HF often has sales on them; we just got 10 more thin ones for $6 ea!). And HF also has a third variant that’s half-width.
Anyway, what pisses me off about these things is NO ONE makes shelves of any kind for them. That is soooooo irritating. Stackable cubes with rails that would hold, say, 3 large or 6 small organizers would be awesome. Done well, they could totally be shot in plastic.
Anyway, since I have about 20 at home and we’re well on our way to 30 at work (and counting…), it was time to tame the beasts this weekend. Here’s my first cut at it; I used cheap 1/2″ plywood for the first go around (thin skin on the back to keep it light) and what you see attached is about 1/3 of the shelves built to date. Works great. What came out well too is, if you look on the bottom of the middle column, it fits two of the 1/2 size HF versions, so this config shown could hold 6 total 1/2 size. One could also slide a shelf in various locations to hold other smaller things too I suppose.
You can see from the bowing of the bottom orange shelf that I missed my vertical measurement by just a hair….
Anyway, if it’s a slow news day, this might elicit some other responses as to storage solutions for mass quantities of stuff.
I like it! This looks to be a simple and quick-to-build cabinet that one could put together with a bit of patience and minimal tools. It doesn’t look like the cabinet takes up anymore space than if the plywood sides were dadoed or routed to accommodate the organizers. Those strips of wood should work just as well to support even moderately loaded organizers.
This is exactly what I need to do as well, if my schedule ever allows for it. Although… that might tempt me into buying “just a few more” of these Stanley organizers. Maybe I’ll wait until the next Stanley promo that might come around next winter holiday season.
And in the recent post about these Stanley organizers, Ktash mentioned a project that Lu described in response to the winter holiday deal post. Lu described how they built a similar storage cabinet but with recessed grooves for these organizers to slide into.
It seems that a lot of us are looking for affordable alternatives to Adam’s drool-worthy Sortimo T-Boxx setup. The last I checked, Sortimo T-Boxxes were only available through one USA distributor with a confusing website, and storage racks need to be specially ordered somehow.
If you’ve got a bunch of these Stanley or HF organizers, how do you stack or store them in a sane and efficient way? Have you seen a DIY project worth sharing?