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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Since we moved into a new house we are having to shift our storage to the method the current house is set up for. That means I need to add shelves and cabinets in a lot of places.

I need shelves for the following spots:
1. Garage - More industrial grade deep shelving for storage of things like tools and generators and "gear."
2. Closets - More for stuff like seasonal clothing, some long term food and water storage and some smaller stuff like lights and batteries, etc.
3. Utility Closet - Think of this as the cavernous "under the stairs closet" for things like Christmas decorations, and stuff that you need to climate control the storage of.
4. Kitchen Pantry - It already has two pantries with shelves, but maybe there is something more efficient. Obviously this is food storage.
5. Attic - No attic space yet in this house, but I have a few places I might add some. It will be costly to add the ladder and decking for such a small space and here in Phoenix our attics get ridiculously hot in the summer. So this is not the place to store peaches or ammo.

Show me your suggestions. What works for you? Did you buy or build? Are there other unique areas of the house that I'm neglecting to add storage? I'm really open to any ideas.
 

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I didn't see mention of a basement but if memory serves, not too many exist in the Phoenix area? Regardless, I'll focus on storage shelves for our food stores...

Backwards from "finish to start" if that makes sense? We finish at the Pantry in the kitchen which is a fairly common cabinet system like most people have. Then our next level of food stores are located in the basement where temps stay pretty much in the low 60's in winter to the low 70's even on the hottest summer day.

We use a series of heavy duty industrial storage shelves that you can find at any home center. There we have our intermediate stores of items that we eat regularly. Note in the pic below lower left hand corner there is a blue Rubbermaid tote. That tote was our canned goods that have a "Best Used By Date" in 2015. We are rotating out of that tote and since its just the 2 of us, it pretty much lasts nearly a year since we can our own to supplement store bought. We move food from one large shelf to the other then to the kitchen pantry. Obviously some foods like crackers are more perishable than others so we are mindful of them.

View attachment 12095

Then we have an area that is dedicated to our long term stores; Totes that contain canned store bought goods with 2016-2018 Best Used by dates as well as 5 gallon buckets of food stored in Mylar w/ Oxygen Absorbers as well as buckets of Long Term (Wise Foods in this pic) and various goods and sundries. But simple industrial shelves are the majority of our basement storage.

View attachment 12096

Because of the basement having exposed stud walls, I've built simple custom Oak and Poplar wood shelves attached and supported at the exposed stud wall...but due to some things I'd like to keep OPSEC I'd rather not show but you get the picture. Basements are great for the Prepared Persons! Hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I didn't see mention of a basement but if memory serves, not too many exist in the Phoenix area?
Nope - I've seen three homes with a basement here. The soil makes it costly to dig and there is no guarantee once they start that they won't make it half way and hit granite (impenetrable). If that happens you just paid 2/3 of the cost for a basement and you have an unusable space. Usually the soil here is hard packed sand, caliche, then brimstone / volcanic material and under that is the granite. All in varying thicknesses. When the in-laws built a pool, they hit granite and paid for the deep end of that pool dearly. The contractor called it "good enough" after he killed the fourth back-hoe mounted jack hammer - much to the neighbors rejoyce.

I was surprised on yours to see you using the plastic shelves. I've never had a ton of faith in that stuff but it looks like you have it loaded down. I do have some of the metal wire ones like you have in the top pic. How do they compare? I would have thought the wire was better, but now not so sure.

And I totally get OpSec on your response. Didn't even think of that. So thank you for what you have shared and for anyone else, if you just want to link to the product that'll be fine too. No need to show me your goodies. It is the shelving I'm interested in any way.
 

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The black plastic shelving is the heaviest duty and rated for some heavy loads. I've got one that has all of my electric hand tools like multiple drills, electric saws, grinders, sanders things like that plus all the cases and I have fastners stacked on it and I'm here to tell you, its very strong. The wire shelving is pretty good but if I had to choose, I'd go with the heavy plastic. Once a year or so, we unload them and spray them down to get rid of any cobwebs or spiders and they keep on keeping on. They are at least 10 or 12 years old.

On another note, here is an idea for a simple wood storage rack (just in case you need some firewood in Phoenix?) made out of 4x6 treated pine and heavy duty fasteners. The top pic is one made out of leftover cedar 4x6's from building my covered porch. You can buy a cheap wood rack at the Walmart but I enjoy making something that'll last;
(Tip; if you are going to store firewood near your house, make sure you keep it at least 6" from the brick or siding so that you can spray insect/wasp spray to keep bugs from nesting near the house)
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks, Slip!

No firewood here. Don't need it in the Valley of the Sun, but you do up north of here. Hell - I don't even have a fireplace. Where the builder had the option of an fireplace they left a large odd media niche. We are going to have some nice cabinets installed there (STORAGE!) and make a wine bar for Mrs. Gallop out of it. Gotta keep her preps too and wine on hand makes any disaster easier to ride out.
 
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The places that I've worked have been partial to the metal wire shelves, they allow daylight and dust to pass through them. Maybe that is something you would like.

Do you have a university or large institute within a reasonable driving distance, you might want to see if they have a warehouse or website for surplus furniture? I have recently picked up 8 book shelves( 4wx6h ea) at $5 each. And I also have 5 wide drawer file cabinets ( $5 ea). The book shelves gave me 32feet of wall in my basement storage room.

And the file cabinettes fill 1 wall in my garage. I like them in the garage because it keep everything out of sight from the street, when I have the garage door open.

A few years back, I had a garage with 10' walls, I bought 6 sets of plastic shelves like Slippy's, and assembled them 4 sets wide and 1 1/2 sets high. It required a step ladder to reach the top two shelves but it made good use of the space.

My current garage has a mezzanine/attic space in it. I use the space as a man cave, by placing large multipurpose 4'x8' tables in the space. I also place large rubbermaid containers full of storage under the tables. I could get more storage using other methods but this is a nice example about a space that serves two purposes.
 

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Preppers who use shelfs are not as prepared as they could be in my opinion. One of my old buddies worked at a grocery store where I eventually got to talking to the milk truck driver and long story short I ended up with several pallets of milk creates like theses

http://i.ytimg.com/vi/GqCrvchcxZk/hqdefault.jpg

Most people who use shelfs won't maximize the space on the shelf and will waste so much space. I guess for beginners or people with tons of storage space can use that but I love to get everything in my bunkers as compact as possible. It might take me a little time to inventory my stock for damage but it's worth it. I have my bunkers packed full except everything is on top of 6in of coke 2 liter plastic cases incase the bunker floods. Besides those 6inches of wasted space NOTHING is open to air. Great thing about milk creates they are easy to move around.

I would suggest you find a way to pack your storage space as tight as possible and to try to stay away from basic shelfs to much wasted space unless you plan on using additional storage bins for the shelfs then you might as well just find stackable storage bins. Also I am working on custom making new pallets to fit on my floor. They might rot if they get wet but my bunkers have proven to be pretty dry. Good luck.
 

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Preppers who use shelfs are not as prepared as they could be in my opinion. One of my old buddies worked at a grocery store where I eventually got to talking to the milk truck driver and long story short I ended up with several pallets of milk creates like theses

http://i.ytimg.com/vi/GqCrvchcxZk/hqdefault.jpg

Most people who use shelfs won't maximize the space on the shelf and will waste so much space. I guess for beginners or people with tons of storage space can use that but I love to get everything in my bunkers as compact as possible. It might take me a little time to inventory my stock for damage but it's worth it. I have my bunkers packed full except everything is on top of 6in of coke 2 liter plastic cases incase the bunker floods. Besides those 6inches of wasted space NOTHING is open to air. Great thing about milk creates they are easy to move around.

I would suggest you find a way to pack your storage space as tight as possible and to try to stay away from basic shelfs to much wasted space unless you plan on using additional storage bins for the shelfs then you might as well just find stackable storage bins. Also I am working on custom making new pallets to fit on my floor. They might rot if they get wet but my bunkers have proven to be pretty dry. Good luck.
Good call BuggyBugoutBag,
I just tossed and burned all of my shelving. Thanks for pointing out the deficiency in my plan. Come on up Slippy Lane to discuss but please call first!
Thanks
 

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If you build your own shelves you can make them the proper distance apart so you can fit #10 cans, quart and pint jars, canned vegetables and fruits. We built a lot of shelves from pallets we took apart. You can get some great wood from free pallets.
 
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