DIY: the $40 Pot Rack

I have a handful of nice stainless steel pans I’ve been slowly accumulating over the past several years. It wasn’t until recently that I decided to look for a solution to display these pans in a reasonably functional manner. The most obvious solution would be a pot rack. The biggest problem I have with a pot rack is that my kitchen does not have very much room for a pot rack. I eliminated all wall-mounted racks because the only wall I have available is across the kitchen from the range. I am unable to use the oval, rectangle, or otherwise 2-d pot racks that hang from the ceiling because I don’t have that much space above my island. The most likely type of pot rack would be the bar-style pot rack (example pictured below).

The bar racks have two inherent problems though:

1. they all have two points of contact with the ceiling
2. they appear to be at minimum 36″ long.

I was looking for a single-point of contact bar rack that was about 20-28″ long in order to fit above the end of my island.

The solution: make my own pot rack.

The only material I could think of that would be easy to work with and pretty universal in case something should break, was the steel galvanized pipe and fittings available at home depot. These pipes came in a variety of widths, and the fittings made it easy to piece together.

As far as parts go, the details are here. The rack itself ended up being about $15, but each hook came in at around $4 each – you could have gone with S-hooks which would have been significantly cheaper, but I wanted the hook to be 90 degrees to the eyelet – so I had to get the coupler to do it.

Like I said, I wanted a single point of attachment to the ceiling – which the flange provides a nice sturdy base. I am attaching this flange to a doubled-up two by four in my ceiling, so I am able to screw in all 4 wood screws.

BEFORE making the pilot holes for the flange, I twisted on the short 4″ nipple pipe and the t-shape fitting very very tightly to see how the flange would sit relative to the t-fitting. when you mark the holes for the flange, make sure to position the t-fitting how you want it to look when you’re done. for me, the t-fitting did not sit over any of the screw holes, but this may not be the case for you.

After making the pilot holes, screw in the flange using the wood screws ,and then attach the desired nipple pipe length. I picked 12″ nipples off each side, making a 26″ total length.

The hooks were a little more complicated than I thought because I wanted to find a large enough eye hook that would hang on the pipe, but also small enough where the coupled hook would still hang a pan from its handle. I ended up picking the 3/8″ sizes with the appropriate coupler. the 3/8 hook just perfectly hangs the pans from the handles. I think ideally I would have liked the 5/16″ hook, but the 5/16″ eye bolt was too skinny to fit around the pipe.

Hang the hooks onto the bar and close it off with the pipe caps to prevent the hooks from slipping off.

Hang the pots and voila! you’re done!

Note: the end caps I used were the steel galvanized color, where the pipes were all the black galvanized color. I plan on going back to home depot to get the matching color.

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7 Comments

  1. Posted July 12, 2010 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

    Great idea and it looks cooler than the pricier alternative.

  2. John Dorean
    Posted July 19, 2010 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    You should have just duct taped them to the ceiling.

  3. Sammy F
    Posted July 26, 2010 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

    I like the pot rack a lot! Looks fabulous in person.

  4. MARYJO
    Posted October 4, 2012 at 10:07 am | Permalink

    NOT SO UNCOMMON, I SEARCHED ALL OVER THE INTERNET FOR ANSWERS AND MY FRUSTRATION WAS BUILDING BIG TIME.

    I WAS IN THE SAME PREDICAMENT AS YOU IN THAT MY SPACE, WALL AND CEILING ARE ALL VERY LIMITED ON HOW I CAN FILL THE SPACE WITH POTS AND PANS…

    MY CEILING IS ONLY 8FT WHICH LIMITS THE SPACE BTWN THE TIP OF THE PAN HANDLE AND THE CEILING NOT TO EXCEED 2O INCHES TOTAL OR MY HEAD WOULD BE BANGING THE PAN. THIS IS WHERE I’M CHALLENGED…I AM PRETTY TALL, 5’11 …

    SO WITH ALL THESE FACTORS IN PLAY, I WOULD ONLY HAVE MINIMAL INCHES TO SPARE AS MY BIGGEST PAN IS EXACTLY 18 INCHES FROM TIP OF HANDLE TO THE OTHER END.

    SO MY TOTAL ALLOWABLE SPACE FROM CEILING TO END OF POT IS 2O” MAX…LEAVING THE BIGGEST PAN OF 18″ IN THE CABINET…AND DAMN IF IT ISN’T THE ONE I USE MOST OFTEN…

    THEN THERE’S THE CHALLENGE OF A SINGLE WHITE FEMALE FIGURING OUT HOW TO LOCATE A CEILING JOIST??…..I CAN USE A HAMMER AND DRILL THOUGHT LOL…

    THANKS FOR YOUR AWESOME POT RACK PLAN

    MARYJO

  5. Posted March 6, 2013 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

    The alternative shows support at both ends. Black iron is very heavy by itself. I like the look of this rack (T Shape), but I think this could use a little more support.

  6. Posted March 6, 2013 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

    The iron piping is screwed into a doubled up joist in the ceiling. i used lag screws to hold it up. just to weight test it, i did some pullups, so i know it can hold at least 185 lbs 🙂

  7. David
    Posted April 18, 2014 at 1:56 am | Permalink

    AWESOME!!!!

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