How to Build Pull out Shelves For the Galley
Since we downsized from a 37' LARGE sailboat, we (Michele) was not happy with the available food storage in the galley. Basically there is none. Before I could fill up the hanging locker opp the galley with my very important tools, oil, etc Michele told me what it was for, canned and boxed food. I had to agree and still have not found a good spot for my many tools. So we but our heads together and came up with a great storage system. I made a deal with Michele to build the shelf unit and she would paint the locker before I install it. If you want it to look nice the whole locker must be painted....the shelves are wire see through.
Capt Al's Shelves
Description of storage unit:
Close head door, open cabinet door and you see three 10 inch wide by 20 inch long wire rack shelves that are 5 inches high each. The best part is that the shelves slide out 15 inches so you can reach all items. Even better is the fact that I can slide the bottom shelf totally out (must lift over the shelf stops) and all my 6 cans of oil fit under the shelf. The shelves filled with heavy items (peanut butter, soda, etc) is not a problem.
Three CLOSETMAID Kitchen Cabinet Organizer pull out basket #3991 for an 11 inch opening (unit 10 1/4w x 5 1/4 h x 20 deep). WHERE: HOME DEPOT $10.67each. Three 1 x 2 x 8 feet finish pine wood boards and 1 1/4 long sheet rock screws. Galv if you like but not necessary.
The shelves come with slides that mount under them so the sides of the shelves are free. Cut two boards (here on in boards means a 1 x2 piece of wood) 18 inches long....mount the shelf slide on the wide side of each board and close to one edge. Place the shelf in these two slides on a flat surface like a work bench. Now you have the shelf on top of the 1 x2 in its track but we need something to keep the tracks equal distance apart. Turn the whole thing upside down (in Theory) and attach two boards (about 12 1/8 inches long), one, three inches back from the front and one on the rear edge to hold the tracks apart, only put one screw in each board. Flip rightside up and slide the shelf in and out of its tracks. If it is too tight or loose, rescrew the bottom spacer till you get it right. Do this for all three shelves and you will now have three nice sliding shelves for the top of your work bench....the next step is getting them on top of each other with spaces and be able to fit it to the boat. If you hold one unit 10 inches directly above the first and another one above that, all we need is 4 boards, one on each side corner to act as legs. This would be all if we were putting this above the work bench. If you remember the shape of the nav cabinet it drops down behind the door, so the front legs must go down 6 1/4 inches below this first draw (one screw only in each board). The rear legs are only 2 1/4 inches below the shelf unit because the hull rounds up in this area. Well if you put this all together as described, you have one crooked looking shelf unit on your work bench. I put a temporary leg in the middle of the back (about 4 inches long) so I could keep it level and bring it to the living room to show my lovely wife...add a few food items for effect first! This is a good point to remove all the plastic slides and paint all the surfaces of the 1 x 2's that will be showing. I did not do this, I took all the plastic slides off after it was installed in the boat...I like working upside down and in cramped quarters.
So why have we only put one screw in each board? The next part is magic...remove all three shelves from the unit you just built....grab the middle shelf slide sides and move one hand forward and one hand back...it folds like a cloths hanging rack...if you did it right it also tilts in the up and down direction. All these moves are what will allow you to slide it into the nav locker in ONE piece. Once you have it in, bend it back to shape, move it around till the bottom shelf is above the door lip and it is equally spaced in the opening. Make sure that it is set back just enough to close the door without interference. Mark with a pencil where the front legs are with respect to the interior wall of the head and nav wall. Note the space between these legs and the walls. Place a small filler on each side (top and bottom) to take up this space. I screwed in the (I needed 3/4 inch each side so a 3 inch 1 x 2 worked) fillers after moving the shelf unit aside and then with the unit in place screwed it to the spacers on the front legs. I did not attach the rear legs. It was plenty strong. I did have to place a board between the bottom shelf cross support to the hull to hold the rear at the right height. If all fits well and you are not taking it out again, you can take out the front spacers that are holding the draw slide apart...the unit is supported by the side walls now, they are not doing anything...don't remove the rear, they are holding the spacing of the slides in the rear. I have a detailed drawing if not printed in the Mainsheet, will gladly send to anyone who needs it.
Al and Michele
#55 "Kindred Spirit"
How to Build Shelves For the Galley
Stu & Cory's Shelves
With Al Watson's article on storage cabinets in the hanging locker aft of the nav station as a prompt, I got in touch with him by email. We've become real "pen pals".
Since my boat has all sorts of instruments mounted on the nav station, his great storage rack design was too high for my application. But with his pictures and some email discussion, I bought another type of Home Depot three shelf assembly and installed it last week. It works wonderfully and opens up a lot of space for all of us.
It's a Rev-a-Shelf model 594-12-5, 3 basket pull out, 12 1/4" wide, 18" deep and 19 1/2" high. It comes with its own rollers so all three shelves come out together. So instead of having to build the supporting woodwork for each of the three shelves, I only had to support the assembly at the bottom with 2" x 2"s at the front and middle of the locker.
The individual shelves aren't as deep as Al & Michele's, but they clear the instruments up top and still hold a lot. This could be a good alternative to others who wish they had the storage space but don't have the height that Al did if they have instruments on the aft face of the nav station. With the inverter running the drill, sander and saw, we installed the shelves one afternoon while we were moored out at Angel Island. It's a good idea to add a hook to the door to stop it from opening on port tack going upwind. Saves cleaning up the galley floor.
Installation Day: ...so I started in on the cabinet. I'd precut and painted the 2" x 2" pieces, then pulled out the drill, electric saw and orbital sander and went to work, mostly up on deck. Lots of people around us couldn't believe it. Bzzz, hack, wham. All the electric tools on the inverter. One of the pictures is of the support members "prior to installing the floor"! I had to make do with the outboard support to miss the hoses from the head, the inner piece fits up on the inside lip with similar legs, right behind the door. I screwed the front piece into the back of the door frame. I screwed the rear piece through from both the head and under the nav station. The wire baskets just fit, and I had to raise the door latch, but it sure was fun using the tools on the inverter. I also brought along a big household work lamp that really helped as it was getting dark near finishing time. Cory filled it up immediately, but also noticed that we now have room in the cabinets over the galley, since she moved all that stuff into the new racks. Guess we haven't been aboard long enough to fill everything up. I still have to go back and put in a few more screws since the ones I put in were only for the adjusting-till-it-works slots.
Stu and Cory "Aquavite"
E-Mail Stu if you have any questions at (firstname.lastname@example.org)