Making A Small Parts Carousel
By: Erich Lage
Storing Small parts close at hand is easy with this carousel. A few pieces of plywood and small storage containers are all that's needed.
There’s never a shortage of small parts and loose pieces of hardware cluttering my workbench. I needed a way to organize some of these items while still keeping them close at hand. My solution was to build this double-decker small parts carousel that you see in the photo above. It’s designed to hook into my pegboard, keeping my workbench tidy and ready to use. At the heart of the parts carousel are some 4" clear plastic jars with screw-on lids. These jars are available from Lee Valley (Sources, page 67) and are the perfect size for organizing a vast array of small items. The holes in the upper and lower discs on the carousel are sized to allow the jars to slip into place easily. With the exception of the hardwood dowel and the PVC spacers, the carousel parts are all made from plywood. I made the top, bottom, and back first. A shallow hole in the top and bottom holds the dowel, and a couple rabbets are needed at the ends of the back.
Soften the edges of the discs with a roundover bit and assemble the carousel. Screw the bottom to the back first. Then it’s just a matter of stacking the rest of the pieces in place, as shown at right, before screwing the top to the back. A couple L-hooks allow the rack to hang on a pegboard panel. Next, cut the two discs to size and lay out the six holes for the jars, as well as the center hole for the axle. To ensure all seven of the holes align, clamp the discs together. One hole in the upper disc is notched (detail ‘a’) to make removing jars from the lower disc easier.