One day as I sat there at the sink fumbling with a roll of paper towels I thought to myself…something needs to change! So after I picked the now wet roll of paper towels out of the sink, I decided I needed to make a pallet wood sink caddy! I searched for some images online and found one I really liked and made a few minor modifications to it. I believe it is actually an Ana White design, but the picture had it mounted on the inside of a door for an undersink cabinet.
The entire caddy is made out of 2 boards of poplar pallet wood and a 1-1/4″ dowel. Here is what I started with, 2 boards that were just over 48″ long and about 6″ wide.
I cut the sides out of one of the pieces and the bottom, front stretcher, cleats, and paper towel holder brackets out of the other. I made the sides 24″ long and the distance between them 12-1/2″. I made my initial cuts and sent the wood through my planer and this is what I was left with. Of course if you don’t have a planer you could just sand it with 80 grit, 120 grit and 220 grit paper and have an even more rustic look.
From the 3 pieces of the bottom board, I turned the middle piece into the bottom, the right piece into the cleats and paper towel holder brackets and the piece on the left into the front stretcher. Now I had all the pieces cut out and identified though I later decided to make the brackets much smaller.
I laid out a 2″ radius on the top of the sides which gives it a nice refined look. I used the bandsaw to rough cut the curve and then sanded to the line I had laid out using my Ridgid Oscillating Spindle Sander.
I drilled pocket holes in all the interior pieces and attached them to the sides. Unfortunately I was more concerned with getting the project done then taking pictures at this point so I don’t have any to show you of assembly. But if you’ve seen one pocket hole assembly, you’ve seen them all 🙂
To hold the dowel rod I made two brackets 3″ wide and 2-3/4″ tall. One is just a square with a 1-3/8″ hole cut in the middle and the other is a square with a 1-3/8″ hole with a “U” notch in it. I can put the dowel in the closed bracket and drop the other side into the “U”. It works great and holds the paper towels solidly.
To attach these brackets I used CA glue (super glue) since the pieces were so small and I didn’t want to use screws. Just apply a few generous dabs to the brackets, line them up (make sure you move quickly because this stuff sets up FAST!) then put them in place and hold them there with your hand or a small clamp.
I located the brackets based on a full size roll of the blue Scott’s towels that I use. I tried a few different sizes of paper towel rolls and realized some of them are really big. So check your favorite towels before mounting the brackets and make sure you have clearance between the back cleat. Mine are mounted 2-1/2″ down from the top and 1/2″ set back from the front of the caddy.
I sanded the entire piece to 220 grit and then applied 3 coats of shellac to it. I love using shellac more than polyurethane because the shellac dries in 10 – 15 minutes. On a warm day you can do 3 coats in under an hour! Try that with poly…
Here is a shot during the application. You can see the closed bracket as well in this picture.
I hung it above my sink in my garage and it makes a great station to hold my GoJo and paper towels so I’m not constantly fumbling them off the side or into the sink.
You can make something just like this in the matter of a few hours. Go out there and find some pallets and get to ripping them up!
And here is a drawing of the caddy if you want an easy reference for some of those dimensions.