DIY Industrial Pipe Shelves….
The first thing I did was draw up what I wanted it to look like. Once I had my drawing I stared measuring and deciding how tall I wanted all the shelves. Then I added up how many of each piece I would need. I needed flanges, T’s, elbows, and straight pipe.
This is my rough sketch of what I wanted it to look like. You would be surprised how many T’s and elbows you need.
You can design your shelving however you want, so your supply list may be different. but the best tip I can give you id to DRAW IT OUT. You dont have to be an artist. A simple drawing is all you need. It makes it easier to see how it will all look and how it will fit together.
I decided I wanted the shelves 15 inches deep. Now, this is where a normal person will run to the store and buy all the pipe pre-cut. But upon looking into it, we realized we had a pipe cutter and pipe threader in our shop at work. We found that if we bought the pipe in 20 foot lengths and cut and threaded them ourselves, we saved a considerable amount of money. Like it was half as much! So, most people probably don’t have access to a saw that cuts metal pipe, or a threader, but we do!
Once we were done cutting, we washed them all with some dish soap and let them dry. We then spray painted all the pieces with black flat paint. This included flanges, elbows and T’s.
Then we started putting it together!! First thing was screwing the flanges to the floor and then start building up.
We screwed the flanges into the floor. These are the base of the shelves so you want to make sure they are in there solid. We then screwed a pipe into each flange. It was like putting together a puzzle.
We then connected a T to the pipe, and connected a piece of 15 inch pipe with an elbow on the end. This is what will support the shelves from underneath.
We then cut our wood for the shelves. I really wanted a rustic/industrial feel. We had some plywood on hand that was exactly what I wanted. I loved that it still had some of the stamping left on it and had a little wear. We decided to double them up so they’d be thicker shelves.
We used a keyhole saw to cut the holes in the wood and then ran the pipes through those holes. This involved a bit of measuring to get the correct spot.
***Sooo, a little helpful hint. When I was adding up the length of pipe, for the height of the entertainment center, I failed to add in the 2 inches each T added to it. This resulted in having to change a few things and Lance having to recut and thread some of the pipe. If we hadn’t had to do this, the project would have been much faster!****
About half done!
As you can see from our window it was getting late.
Once you set the first shelf in, you will then screw in your next piece of pipe, followed by a T. Then you will add the length of pipe and the elbow to support the next shelf.
Add the next shelf, and repeat the steps.
What is nice, is the shelves are pretty forgiving when it comes to leveling. You can just twist the T’s a few extra times or the opposite to adjust and get it level.
The next day, I sanded the wood and then sealed it with a polyacrylic coat. I wanted to keep a lot of the character so there wasn’t a lot of sanding. I just wanted to make sure people wouldn’t get splinters when touching it!
What’s interesting is this could have gone either way. I had to purposefully keep a lot of the character or else had I tried to patch and make it look like nice wood, it would have looked weird.
My goal with this project was to create a stylish shelving system for my television and other accessories in my family room. I am so happy with the result and would tell anyone thinking of doing this that yes! You should do it!
I couldn’t have done it without some of my favorite tools…..
*This post contains affiliate links for your convenience*
- Dewalt Cordless Drill– For 99 dollars, this is a great investment. We had our previous one for over 10 years before it died and that was only because my husband dropped it off the roof.
- Mouse sander– this is great for many, many projects!
- Miter Saw– Once I got over my fear of using this tool, a world of possibilities opened up. I can now use this with confidence.
- Table Saw– This is another one of my favorite tools. I use this for so many projects.
Slowly adding these tool to your arsenal will bring you many happy days of DIY projects. We didn’t strike it rich one day and buy them all. Each one was bough after much though and very gradually. One for Christmas, a fathers day gift, believe it or not..mothers day, birthdays, you name it. We love our tools.
Don’t forget these other super helpful tools:
I hope you’ve enjoyed this enormous project. These industrial pipe shelves were sure worth the effort. Thanks for taking time out of your day to see what I was up to at Twelve On Main.
Thanks for stopping by and remember…..
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*This post contains affiliate links. By clicking on a link, I may earn a few pennies toward the progress of my blog. There is no charge to you. All my opinions are my own.*
If you’re looking for industrial pipe shelves, check these kits out: