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DIY Hacks: How to Make Rack Shelves for Your Man-Cave

Calling all man-cave dwellers, Builders has a challenge for you!




We all know that every man deserves, or at least fantasises about, having his very own mancave. You know, a space inside or outside of the house which belongs just to him (no girls allowed). Where he can put out his superhero posters and figurines of yesteryear, watch some uninterrupted football and rugby games while not sharing his man-sized pizza with anyone, and even leave his socks in a little pile if he wants to.

Well, Builders wants to pose a challenge to all mancave owners, and power tool wielding men in general, to do something that will spruce up their space in no time. Enter the raw meranti wood wall complete with rack shelves: the perfect finishing touch to any mancave, with space saving racks that can be put up against any wall with just a little bit of effort. The nifty shelves, made out of chunky slabs of wood and large industrial-looking hooks, will free up plenty of floor space for that foosball table. All you need to build your meranti wood wall and a couple of rack shelves is some enthusiasm, the correct tools and materials (as outlined below) and eight, easy steps courtesy of Builders:

Tools: Cordless drill and screwdriver, drill bits, measuring tape, spirit level, ladder, jigsaw and paintbrush.

Materials: The amount of wood required will depend on the area of wall you want to clad. Our area was 2,4 x 2,4. This required four 22mm x 69mm x 2,4m planks, six 12mm x 94mm x 2,4m planks, six 12mm x 94mm x 1,8m planks, 20 12nm x 144mm x 1,8m planks, four 32mm x 144mm x 1,8m planks, 4 x 30mm self-cutting screws, nail-in screws and plugs and 10 rubber coated hooks.


  • Measure and mark where the vertical uprights will go on your wall. Space them evenly to look neat.
  • Use the spirit level to also mark these measurements vertically.
  • Attach the 22mm x 69mm x 2,4m uprights to the wall on marks you’ve made in step one using nail-in screws and plugs.
  • On two of the 12mm x 94mm x 1,8m, and two of the 12mm x 144mm x 1,8m planks, mark lengths of 600mm and cut with a jigsaw.
  • Now start attaching the 12mm planks to the uprights with screws. Randomly use the broad (144mm) and narrow (94mm) planks to create interest. Some of the 2,4m planks will stretch the whole way across, while other times you will add a 600mm plank to a 1,8m plank to make up the 2,4m.
  • Decide where you want to place the shelves and use a spirit level to mark where the hooks should go. Remember to do this only where the uprights are, for the hooks to be secure.
  • Drill pilot holes, and turn the hooks into place.
  • Cut the 32mm x 144mm x 1,8m planks into various lengths (600mm / 800mm / 900mm) and place on the hooks.

Top tip: Start cladding from the floor up and use offcut timber as spacers to ensure you space the rows of planks evenly.

In eight easy steps, your mancave will look even manlier than it did before, complete with wooden wall and handmade rack shelves. Now invite all your friends over for a braai, notice the disbelief on their faces when they admire your handiwork… and show them how it should be done!

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