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Storing small lengths of steel stock

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Hillclimber06/02/2019 08:02:26
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127 forum posts
22 photos

I seem to have collected lots of 'bits' of unused stock, mostly steel bar/ tube/ angle in lengths from 30cms to 2m.

Before I reinvent the wheel, does anyone have tips on best way to sort/ store this stuff?

Cheers, Colin

Paul Lousick06/02/2019 08:12:55
958 forum posts
439 photos

Unused stock, 30cm to 2m long. I wish I had that problem.

Thats the length which I now have to buy, since retiring. My unused stock which I have problems storing is less than 100mm long. (material is never too small to use, as long as you can still hold it).

Cheers, paul.

Speedy Builder506/02/2019 08:16:37
1646 forum posts
111 photos

It depends upon how many tons you have got ? I store 1m lengths in 100mm plastic tube (Vertical against the wall), short bits in some old stackable plastic trays, sorted into round, square and other. But I don't have too much of it. Thin section of all sorts of rod/ tube I put into a section of drain pipe suspended between the rafters. For silver solder, I have some rigid plastic conduit, blocked off at one end and a cork in the other. Melting point marked on the outside.

John Hinkley06/02/2019 08:22:19
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665 forum posts
215 photos

For what it's worth, I store my odds and ends in two ways. I put the short - up to 40cm or so - pieces in stacking plastic baskets, originally sourced from our local supermarket when we lived in France. They were used to supply/display vegetables. I don't know whether something similar is used in the UK, though. My longer lengths are stored in a one metre length of 100mm diameter plastic pipe fitted with screw-on access fittings at each end, and stored vertically. Everything drops to the bottom, of course, so opening that end reveals all the stock, ready for selection and extraction. You could adapt that with several short lengths with suitable labelling on the "lids" to separate steel, brass and aluminium etc., and stack them horizontally along shelving.

John

Danny M2Z06/02/2019 09:09:35
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702 forum posts
276 photos

Before you store them, label them with material type and dimensions (e.g. 2024 T-3, 25mm x 45mm) A CD marker pen seems to write on most materials.

From experience it saves a lot of time when trying to find the right piece for a job in the 'goodies' box months/years later.

* Danny M *

Hillclimber06/02/2019 09:31:08
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127 forum posts
22 photos

Yes, there is no such thing as scrap. I also keep anything below about 35cm in stacking plastic boxes. It's the longer pieces...

Along similar lines, I was thinking about a couple of open-ended 30 and 60 cms lengths of wastepipe fixed vertically to the wall with brackets, and a couple of short lengths of chain on hooks to restrain the taller lengths.

steamdave06/02/2019 09:42:36
396 forum posts
33 photos

I use 4" drainpipe on end. There are 5 rows of pipe, 1 x 12", 1x 24" 1 x 36" The pipes are glued together with normal plastic glue and are self supporting. They sit on a piece of 1/2" plywood.

The pipes are set a little way from the corner so that large pieces unable to fit in the pipes are able to be propped up in the corner.

1. steel brass bronze aluminium stainless.jpg

Pieces that would get hidden in the short pipes are put in Linbins. The items wrapped in newspaper are steel billets.

stock 1.jpg

Works OK for me.

Dave
The Emerald Isle

Edited By steamdave on 06/02/2019 09:43:48

John Paton 106/02/2019 10:00:50
113 forum posts
6 photos

My workshop is quite compact so space is at a premium and wall space even more so. Materials are therefore slotted into all available space and often needs to be moved out into the open to allow access. I tend to cut material down to 1.5m lengths and any longer pieces get banished to the garage .

I try to divide material in lengths up to 1.5m,up to 600mm and under 200mm and each size is subdivided ferrous, stainless, brass, alloy and plastic. Separate bins for cast iron. 1.5 m lengths are mainly stored upright due to lack of accessible wall space for racking. shorter lengths are stored on shelves in square 'plastic rainwater pipe' tubes or trays facing forwards and stacked no more than two high.

Small diameter thin wall tubing and, silver steel and solder is stored in trays subdivided using rectangular electrical conduit.cantilever toolbox mounted on castors are used at floor level under the workbench with shelving above.

Sheet is stored 'on end' with plywood dividers between material type for larger sheets and a series of plastic 'drawer trays' (like those used for craft materials in schools) for smaller offcuts.

Heavier trays ( such as those with stubs of larger diameter bar stock) are on plywood bases with low profile castors allowing them to be stored at floor level under the lathe and between machines. This way they can be quickly and easily drawn out to find the right piece of stock.

My least convenient storage consists of stacks of industrial grade boxes which are too cumbersome and heavy to access swiftly so rarely get used. The larger ones are fish boxes found washed up on the beach and contain car spares such as carburettors and brake calipers, smaller ones are for odd heavy castings, flanges, brackets and the like that 'may come in useful one day'. These live in a separate shed but are not protected from condensation!

Emgee06/02/2019 10:12:38
1022 forum posts
191 photos
Posted by steamdave on 06/02/2019 09:42:36:

I use 4" drainpipe on end. There are 5 rows of pipe, 1 x 12", 1x 24" 1 x 36" The pipes are glued together with normal plastic glue and are self supporting. They sit on a piece of 1/2" plywood.

The pipes are set a little way from the corner so that large pieces unable to fit in the pipes are able to be propped up in the corner.

1. steel brass bronze aluminium stainless.jpg

Pieces that would get hidden in the short pipes are put in Linbins. The items wrapped in newspaper are steel billets.

stock 1.jpg

Works OK for me.

Dave
The Emerald Isle

Edited By steamdave on 06/02/2019 09:43:48

Dave, are you the local materials stockholder !! you have an extensive collection of materials.

Emgee

Hopper06/02/2019 10:29:20
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3161 forum posts
53 photos

Yes a veritable treasure trove there Dave. i'm envious indeed.

steamdave06/02/2019 13:27:38
396 forum posts
33 photos
Posted by Emgee on 06/02/2019 10:12:38:

Dave, are you the local materials stockholder !! you have an extensive collection of materials.

Emgee

Most came from the local scrap yard before I escaped and I think the original source was HM Dockyard, Devonport. All I need now is the will to use it!

Dave
The Emerald Isle

Chris Gunn06/02/2019 20:39:45
266 forum posts
16 photos

Colin, I use square plastic drain pipe to store much of my stock. Being square, one can fill any gap under the bench or by the side of a bench, with pieces of pipe, laid down horizontally, and it can be stacked vertically or horizontally, and no space is wasted. I also mark the ends of the bar with a white correction pen which stands out very well.

Chris Gunn

Hillclimber06/02/2019 20:44:21
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127 forum posts
22 photos
Posted by Chris Gunn on 06/02/2019 20:39:45:

Colin, I use square plastic drain pipe

Chris, you mean plastic downpipe? I'd call it rhone ware, but that technically refers to cast iron...!

https://www.screwfix.com/p/floplast-square-line-downpipe-65mm-x-2-5m-black-6-pack/34212?kpid=34212&ds_kid=92700020953276865&ds_rl=1241687&ds_rl=1245250&ds_rl=1249404&ds_rl=1249799&ds_rl=1245250&ds_rl=1249481&gclid=CjwKCAiAqOriBRAfEiwAEb9oXdNppB9pRc_yCKsHu7Q0IB9hNsZcVGYH_JwLBRhFwIHnJL9oXg05HRoCF_gQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

Cheers, Colin

mechman4807/02/2019 12:05:04
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2225 forum posts
378 photos

A veritable Aladdin's cave there Dave. I have various storage avenues for my stuff, as most people do, plastic piping, lin bin type, handicraft boxes - great for small nuts bolts etc. plus longer lengths stuck in corners, been meaning to get 100mm down pipes or square guttering for the longer lengths, ( another item on my 2duit list )…

storage (1).jpg

storage (2).jpg

storage (3).jpg

George.

Graham Stoppani09/02/2019 07:11:36
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6 forum posts
8 photos

My variation on the drain pipe method, note use of drain pipe fixings to attach to workbench. You can also see I colour code my metals using cheap paint pens off eBay (£5.49 for 12 colours).

Drain Pipes

john carruthers09/02/2019 07:52:51
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577 forum posts
171 photos

I find a damp cardboard box held together with duct tape works well and it deters potential thieves from trying to carry it away.

John Harding09/02/2019 12:44:28
24 forum posts

Having the space I have used free standing concrete hollow blocks one and two high. Their weight plus the material is held upright stops the blocks tipping. quick to set up.

JH

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