best way to organize nuts and bolts

The best way to organise nuts and bolts

Looking at the best way to organize nuts and bolts?  There is nothing more infuriating than knowing you have the piece you need for your project but not being able to find it.  Organizing the small items, screws, nuts and bolts, washers – is a surefire way to complete projects quicker because you can always lay your hands on exactly what you want.  The best way to organize your nuts, bolts, and screws is, of course, where you can find them.  It’s not that easy though is it?

organize nuts and boltsAn organized workspace creates a happy working environment and a happy worker!  Let’s face it we are all guilty of not putting things back where they came from, and not tidying up as we go along, but for our DIY projects to be a pleasure, not a pain then there needs to be a home for things to go to.  Create yourself an organized infrastructure and you will be more likely to find what you want when you want it.  The smaller items, the nuts, and bolts are often overlooked – but can take the longest time to find!

What to look for in your storage:

  • Easy to use and understand – you need to know what’s in your storage without opening every drawer.
  • Able to expand – and by that, I mean that you can buy additional units or modules easily so that you can make the storage capacity larger but remain cohesive in your approach.
  • The average homeowner does not need a commercially available garage set of storage units.
  • Easy to access. Trying desperately to get lids off of tins that have been stuck on for years doesn’t make anyone’s day go smoothly.
  • A solution that stores size separately – no one wants to be trawling through a thousand bolts because you know you own two at the right size.

Only you know how wide the range you are looking to house is.  My guess is that if you need to organize your nuts, bolts, and screws then you have a decent size selection and you undertake a variety of tasks around the home and garden so you need to find the right size piece, suitable for the right job, without fuss.  When considering your options, always start with how much space/how many compartments you think you need, then add some on.

Plastic Drawer Parts Bin with Clear Fronts.

Who doesn’t love these?  They come in different size configurations, so you can have not only large and small drawers but an infinite number of them.  You can see straight away what is in each drawer without opening it – and if you feel particularly moved to you could even label them.  I would suggest a permanent marker so that the clear drawer isn’t obscured by tape or a label, but you get the double benefit of seeing what you have named them still being able to see the item.  Lovely.

The drawers on these units are almost always removable, not too easy, or you would end up picking all your bolts off the floor, but with a tilt motion that can be taken out, then you have a rather fabulously handy plastic box with no lid to take to your area of work and use for as long as you need to, you don’t need to carry the screws or bolts lose.

There is no wasted space with these units, and you can stack them, attach them to a wall, the back of a workbench, anywhere that they will be accessible, and you can see the contents.  Always secure them well – you do not want to be picking up a unit that has thrown drawers and drawers full of contents all over the floor.

If you would like to store smaller parts or even smaller quantities, then clear plastic trays split into sections within the rectangular tray are useful.  Often used for fishing these are configured so that when you lift the lid the entire tray is exposed and all the components are available – useful for small jobs, or if you only have a few things to store.  Although you could have one tray for each category, one for washers, one for screws, one for bolts etc. and once closed they are fairly secure.

Speaking of fishing, tackle boxes are not dissimilar to tool boxes and have lots of handy compartments.  They tend to have smaller compartments that a toolbox, and so are much more useful for storing the smaller items.

Food storage containers are available in every size imaginable – some stack well – they are top opening, so you will only get to one size unit at a time, but wherever they come from they are always gratefully received in the workshop, very useful.

Glass jars are very robust – my own Grandad had a rather fabulous under-shelf system where he had screwed the lids of the jars onto the bottom of the shelf – lifted the jar to the lid, screwed the jar in place and presto – a suspended clear jar, he could see his contents, it was out of the way of his workspace, and he could have as many as could fit down the length of his wooden shelving.

If you have a huge pile of nuts and bolts that need sorting, decide on your system first.  Get that into place so that you have somewhere to sort too, and make sure that you have free time to finish the job, this isn’t something you want to leave halfway through.

You may need to sort one of each size initially so that you can compare as you go and not mix them up into your containers.

The best way to organize your nuts and bolts?  In a system that you can see, in a manner that means you can access them easily, that you know where your nuts, bolts, washers, and screws are, and so that you can get them to your area of work easily, and preferably in the same container.

Author: Kyle Baxter

Kyle Baxter is married with one young son. A very short career in investigative journalism, and a particularly unfortunate experience over the purchase of a major household appliance that took many months to resolve when he could ill-afford the costs led Kyle to his current position as a consumer champion. When not seeking out guidance on the best-on-the-market Kyle enjoys watching baseball and tries to get away from the house long enough to do some off-road cycling.

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