21 Jan 2005 01:44:39
Building a Vertical Wood Gun Rack for Air Rifles

Building a Vertical Wood Gun Rack

After searching the web for designs, pictures and ideas for building a rack
for my air rifles, I was able to finalize the idea, plotted the design and
followed through on my desire to consolidate them. It turned out to be mostly
successful, with a few glaring mistakes which I will discuss below. To minimize
cutting and applying the KISS principle, I used pre-cut selected pieces of
poplar. I created a 15-gun rack. I do not claim to be a wood crafter, just an
amateur who wanted to complete a project. I'll spare you the wavy-line details
I had to adjust. Hopefully this information may help someone else who may wish
to build their own rack.

Sideboards -

Your sideboards and bottom boards are key elements to your rack. By using a
standard, pre-cut piece, you can save some time and hassle and select the best
pieces you can find. To determine the height of your sideboard, take into
account the firearm that will be resting on the rack. In my case, I wanted to
be sure it would hold, without problem, my shortest (and first) BB gun. I cut
my 1"x12"x72" poplar board into two 28" side boards, which turned out to
actually be to short when I assembled the piece. I have three air rifles which
butt against the top board and do not fit into the hole. A 33" high sideboard
would have cleared the Remington Air Master stock, but not allowed my Daisy to
fit without a riser block.
Recommendation : Side boards may be cut to 30", 31", 32" or 33" if desired. Be
sure to allow for any wood or plastic stock before you cut the sideboard.
Measure the stock from butt to foreend tip in order to be safe on height.

Bottom board -

I went with a piece of 1"x12"x48" poplar, no cutting.

Top board -

I took a 1"x6"x48" piece and marked off 15 spots for hole cutting. I used 3"
centers when drilling the top board resting notches. I cut my holes with a
1-1/2" hole saw. While adequately wide enough for my air rifles, I did not cut
them in a half-moon, and thus adding to the problem mentioned with the
sideboard height problem. The three-quarter circles, with a higher side board
would be quite adequate for most long guns, especially the small-diameter air
rifles. A smaller 1" or 1-1/4" hole suffice for them, given a higher sideboard.
Whole, three-quarter, half-moon or semi-circles are personal choice. I failed
to cut the holes in a half-moon, and thus the three-quarter hole inhibits the
three trouble rifles. My cutting error. Yes, I could go back and cut them open,
but I've decided not to.
The half-moon rests could be cut 1", 1-1/4", 1-1/2", 1-3/4", 2" or 2-1/2",
depending upon the firearms to be stored in/on the rack. As mentioned in the
last paragraph, a size suitable for just the barrel could be small, or large
(like a side-by-side double-barreled shotgun or rifle design).

Top support board -

I went with a 1"x3"x48" piece under the top board. If I could go back and do
it again, I might be tempted to use a 1"x6"x48" as a back board and butt the
top board halfway between it's width for added looks.

Bottom back and front boards -

I used a 1"x2"x48" piece for the back board and "x2"x48" piece for the front

Screws and nails -

Pre-drill the holes into your boards with a 3/32" drill bit. Something smaller
makes for difficult drilling, as I found out. The screws I used were #6 x2". I
used 7 screws and one nail, per side board for assembly.