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Creating space

As you acquire more and more model kits, storage space can become a real issue, especially if your work and storage space is limited to a small basement. That's what happened to Hampton, Iowa modeler Brad Huffman, whose available floor and shelf space in his basement "dungeon" (his words) had become painfully inadequate.
Like a seasoned urban planner, Brad chose to move things "up" instead of "out." Here's what he did:

"My shop and kit storage area is in my (small) basement, and a guy can only put up so many shelves. I had a lot of kits and parts stored in plastic freezer bags laying all over the place. After one fell to the floor and got stepped on, I decided it was time to do something besides move to a bigger house.

"I solved the problem by screwing two 2x4s between the overhead, first-floor joists at each end of the basement, and I stretched coated clothesline between them. I punched a hole in the freezer bags (under the seal) and hung the bags on the clothesline between the joists using big homemade S-hooks. The kits are now stored neatly above the work space. An alternative is to drill 1/8-inch holes through the joists about 18 to 20 inches apart, then thread the clothesline through the holes as you would lace a shoe.

"Uniform, homemade S-hooks can be fabricated on a simple fixture made from a piece of 1x2 about three inches long, with short dowels glued into two holes about an inch apart. Bend pieces of heavy wire around the dowels to create as many identical hooks as needed. Keep the fixture handy to make more S-hooks as you need them.

"Here are some trial-and-error tips: 1) Drill a hole in the center of the 2x4 used in Method 1 to keep the clothesline centered between the joists; 2) Use joist hangers from the lumber yard to attach the 2x4s to the joists; and 3) Be sure to allow yourself enough room above the clothesline to get your hand and hook over the line. I hang mine about four inches below the floor."


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