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This just strikes me as a great idea. The short version: They’re good ole’ metal shelves like the cheap (and useful) ones you probably already have, but this company, Space-Trac, has added a little track system on the bottom and some sliding feed so you can stack them two-deep and slide the shelves back and forth for access.

Though the press release doesn’t spec them clearly (probably because it’s just not that important), the shelves themselves look to be made of standard steel with cross-rail shelves with insets (likely MDF or more expensive options for those needing to store heavy items). The rails, however, are made of 6061-T6 aluminum and the slider carriages ride on the rails via a ball-bearing system.

Clearly they offer quite a few options, too, as you can see in the inset where they’ve added pegboard on the back/sides to increase storage density even further. The system will ship in shelf depths from 15 to 36 inches and heights from 60 to 72 inches. They’ll come in shelf weight capacities of 450, 700, or 900 lbs.

We’ve gotta ask some more questions, but to give you an idea of pricing, the 450 lb. model in 15″ depth, 30″ width, and 60″ height with four shelves — complete with the railing and carriages — runs about $118. This goes up to around $188 for the 950 lb. model. I assume that you can buy shelves alone once you have the kit, but we’ll find out about that.

We’ll research these further since they seem like a great solution for most of us with limited garage storage — assuming the shelves themselves test out as quality stuff. But just from the press release alone, we thought they’re worth sharing. (And we can’t help thinking that some of you creative DIY Toolmongers might want to try this idea out on your own.)

Sliding Shelving System [Space-Trac]


19 Responses to Preview: Space-Saving Sliding Shelves

  1. george says:

    well, thats interesting. i’m in a wheelchair so have a hard time moving and storing things. just yesterday my wife said that i should get some shelves and put casters on them. i loved the idea. not sure this track system would work for me as it is still kind of fixed.

  2. DaveD says:

    I did a similar sort of thing with wire shelves and casters. Just stack them up in a corner and pull them out when I need access to the contents.
    It looks like you could also build something in a similar vein.

  3. Tony says:

    What you really want is one of these: http://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/478689270/mobile_filing_cabinet_system_movable_shelf.html

    They’re called ‘compactors’ apparently, probably because of what will happen you if you get in their way.

  4. Dave says:

    Here’s another DYI option – its been on my list to build a set for a while now, but now I really need to check seriously into “build vs buy”…


  5. browndog77 says:

    You’re not really gaining anything with these, except for access to the shelves in the back row. In order to do that, you need to leave a section of floor open, with tracks mounted (for tripping over), so you can move one or more of the front units aside. Fail!

    • Jason Peacock says:

      If you know a way to have a double-row of shelves with easy access to the back shelves w/o using tracks in the floor, please share 🙂

      The DIY solution linked uses casters, which is nice, but not as elegant as the casters will drift.

      Maybe ceiling-mounted tracks? You’d better have some strong beams!

      • browndog77 says:

        I have no desire to have a double row of shelves that require moving front sections to access the back row! It is a problematic system, period. It is no better than plenty of other options, DIY or not! The caster plan is more flexible, in that you can access anything by moving only a single rack. And the floor stays clear!

  6. TL says:

    My concern would be how well those tracks deal with a nice accumulation of sawdust. My shop is never as clean as I’d like it to be (even with dust collection) and any sort of track seems to get gummed up over time.

  7. jesse says:

    This is essentially the same design that is used in large research archives: http://encyclopedia2.thefreedictionary.com/Sliding+Shelves. Not a new concept, but a good product idea nevertheless.

    • browndog77 says:

      I’ve been to the Soviet Union, and trust me when I say their ideas are not always the best!

      • jesse says:

        The system can be found in research and archive facilities throughout the US. I don’t know if the Russians invented them.

  8. Jim says:

    I have found shelving on casters to be very useful. We have several wire shelving units (HD or Lowes) and at Lowes/HD they sell (or did sell) locking casters that screw into and replace the adjustable feet that are sold with the wire shelving units. When we found some of the units were a little too tall I used a pipe cutter and took a few inches off each tube. Drawback of wire shelving is of course small things fall through. I’m never thought until now but I could put some 2×4’s down and make tracks so the casters run straight.
    Family Handyman had a garage issue a year or so ago where they used an overhead track (like on sliding barn doors). http://www.familyhandyman.com/DIY-Projects/Home-Organization/Garage-Storage/garage-storage-space-saving-sliding-shelves

  9. Frankie says:

    I just saw that Home Depot is selling a sliding system for attics: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PjAOkL49FVw . Looks OK.

    • Jerry says:

      That HD attic system reminded me of a friend who made a very similar system – DIY. I thing he used standard metal conduit for the runners and I recall he got some casters from HF, peeled the rubber/plastic off and the metal underneath was shaped like the wheel on a pulley. Fit right over the conduit.

  10. Rich says:

    I’ve been looking at making a similar system, but instead of having shelves slide side to side, they’d slide in and out like a pantry unit. So a 36 inch deep by 6 foot wide area would house three pull-outs that are each either 12″ (each side) or 24″ (full depth) deep by 36″ wide. I can see where this setup would have some advantages, though, as far as having more stuff accessible without movement.

    Anything, though, to cut down on the “huge shelf” problem. I’ve got three bays of 4′ wide by 2′ deep adjustable shelving, and there aren’t really many things that fit efficiently in that space.

    On preview: Yes, the plansnow link is what I’ve been having in mind.

  11. Patron Zero says:

    Mind maybe I’ve watched a few too many MacGyver episodes but couldn’t a person get a similar convenience with shelf units that ride on RollerBlade ‘runners’ ?

  12. Gary Z says:

    My solution is to not accumulate so much stuff that I need lots of shelving. Every 6 months or so I cull my hardwoods, fasteners, and paints. I donate most of it to local schools.
    The only shelving in my shop is wall mount 16 inches down from the ceiling and wall mounted shelves for my paints/stains. Power hand tools are kept in a cabinet and as are my fasteners and such. When most folks have a lot of shelves, they feel a need to fill them.

  13. Mark Franco says:

    I could sure use these in my house, if they really do work. It seems to me you couldn’t really save space doing this, but if it saves any space at all, I need it in my house.

  14. David Klumb says:


    Thanks for all the great comments regarding Space-Trac’s mobile storage solutoin. Our product are avaialbe in Lateral as shown in the photo, side by side and pull out. Mobile carriages can be retroifted for your current rivet shelving, wire shelving, cabinets, etc. Manual capacities are up to 1250 lbs and we have mechancial assist units for up to 18,000lbs. Check out the website.


    Thank you,

    Dave Klumb

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