Saturday, October 8, 2011

Where Do I Put My Food Storage? Awesome water storage rack with FREE plans

 Image source:
One of the big problems people run into with food storage is where and how to store their water.  You need a lot of water.  FEMA recommends that you store at LEAST 1 gallon of water per person per day.  I personally think that you need more than that. 

An reasonably active person needs to drink ½ gallon of water each day, so that leaves ½ gallon, for washing, cleaning, sanitation etc.  Not very much. 

Let's take a look at how A and B solved this problem.  
  Image source:
These shelves are designed and built by A and his wife B.  They have very graciously made the FREE plans and a TON of great photos available on their blog:  the FREE plans are available through a their blog, go check it out.
I asked A and B about the shelves here is what they had to say:

How this awesome water/food storage shelf come to be?
We once stumbled upon a picture online of someone who had stored their water barrels on their sides. (
We thought it was a genius idea and made some changes to the design and also added shelves to the wasted space above them to include a can rotator.  
Image source:
My husband loves to do this kind of project so he was quick to pull out his CAD software and get to work figuring out the best way to do it. 
When we finished it, I posted some pictures on Facebook to show it off to my friends/family and I had tons of requests for instructions of how to do it.  We ended up making a little blog so that anyone who wanted the plans could have access to them.

Where is this located in your house?  It looks like maybe a cold storage, or a basement. 
We live in Colorado and have an unfinished basement.
 Image source:
How many #10 cans does each shelf hold?
Each shelf holds 18 cans.  Each rack has 4 shelves - so one unit will hold 72 #10 cans.  (We have 4 units)

Image source:

On a scale of 1 (easy) - 5 (professionals only) how hard is it to build this shelving?
We'd rate it as a three.  It takes some skills the novice might not have, but you definitely don't need to be a professional (neither of us are!)

What tools are needed to build this shelving?  Are there any specialty tools that are necessary/handy to have?
Mitre Saw

Have you had any problems with water leaking from your barrels? 
We had leaking in one barrel.  This was not due to poor design but rather due to overtightening the hose bib into the bung and it cracked it.  All we had to do to fix it was replace the bung.
 Image source:

How long did it take you to build (not the designing just the build)? 

It took 2 full (long!) days of work to build all four of our units.  We were able to do it in an assembly line manner which cut down on time.  Doing all the cuts first, then the assembly.

How much did they cost to build? 

It cost us roughly $200 to build all four units, plus we already had some materials on hand like screws.  I'd estimate if you had to buy 100% of the materials today, it would cost about $300 for all four - or about  $75/unit

Thanks to A and B for sharing!!