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Industrial Shelves

Who knew chain and basic boards could be so cool? Create this industrial-style shelving unit for easy, affordable extra storage.


Project Overview

Skill Level


Estimated Time

1 day

Estimated Cost


Tools and Materials

Items may be Special Order in some stores. Product costs, availability, and item numbers may vary online or by market. Paint colors may vary slightly from those shown. Availability varies by market for lumber species and sizes.

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Step 1

Using a hacksaw or bolt cutter, cut the 31-ft chain into four 7-ft x 9-in lengths for an 8-ft ceiling (To save time, ask a Lowe's associate to cut the chain to equal lengths).

Step 2

Cut the 72-in paint-grade panels in half to make four 35-in boards (this leaves a little extra to square up both ends of each board). Then rip each board to 9 inches wide.

Step 3

Sand up to 180 grit, and then finish the boards using two coats of Polycrylic satin finish and set them aside.

Step 4

Lay out the locations for the four screw hooks on your ceiling, aligning them as closely as possible with the length and width of the shelves. (The shelves shown were installed perpendicular to the ceiling joists.) Use a stud finder to determine the locations of ceiling joists and find the center of the joist thickness. Drill 3/16-in pilot holes and screw the hooks into the ceiling until the threads are about 1/2-in below the surface. If needed, you can screw some of the hooks in slightly more to level the shelf boards; don't leave any threads exposed.

Step 5

Drill pairs of 7/64-in pilot holes 2-1/2-in from the ends, and screw four one-hole straps to the underside of each board. You'll find these straps in Lowe's electrical section—they are used to mount conduit.

Step 6


Run metal rods through the hole straps and the chain, making sure the board is level on both ends. Attach nuts to the ends of the metal rod to secure the boards in place. If the nuts turn too easily on the threaded rod, you can hold them in place using a drop of blue Loctite Threadlocker before attaching a nut. Repeat for the other shelves.