Six Tier Sword Rack

When you have six bokkuto who need a place to hang, why spend $30 on a rack (8 Tier) when you can instead spend five years and the same amount of money or even more to build your own?

The rectangular foam thing hanging off of the plywood in the first picture is what actually inspired this project.  It came in the box of a new television to protect its’ screen.  After seeing it I thought, “Hm, that looks quite Japanesey!”  So, naturally I decided that I would slather it in paint, attempt to make it look like wood and use it as a back mount to a rack for my swords.

I took a two tiered sword rack that I had on hand and used it to trace a template.  I traced that template on to plywood and added rectangular notches on the back side for the foam to fit.  The entire piece was carved out using a jig saw.

The second picture above is what the foam looked like after seven (yes, seven) thick coats of white Kilz brand paint.  Eventually it would have been coated in two coats of brown paint to give it the slight appearance of wood.  I sanded the rack piece round by hand with 60 grit sand paper.  It took from sunup to sunset and cost me the use of my right hand for several days.  I finished it with 400 grit sand paper to make it baby butt smooth.

I rounded the other rack piece edges years later after buying a router table and a 1/4″ round over bit.  This took about 60-80 seconds. 

After a big move the original foam back mount was destroyed and I finished this project using real wood.  I had trouble finding wood pieces that were real size 1″ x 1-1/2″, so I milled them out of 2 x 4’s using a table saw.  The pictures of this process were regrettably destroyed during another big move.  I used the box joint jig that I had for my router table to carve notches halfway into these pieces so that they could all click together in to the same pattern as the old foam backing (I forgot about the little tips the foam had on the left and right sides).  I wood glued these pieces together at the notches, used fostner bits to drill holes for mounting the rack and finished the piece by using one coat of gunstock stain and one coat of satin polyurethane.

The rack is mounted using bolts and plugs.  I hung it near the front door for appropriate home defense and awe inspired home entry.