Garage Overhead Mightyshelves Alternative Hardware Methods

If you would like to build sturdy garage overhead mightyshelves as described in my earlier post here, but don’t have attic space above your garage, one of several alternative hardware support methods is required.  The original design for these shelves uses threaded rod with washers and nuts.  You run a piece of threaded rod through the shelving and up into the attic space where it is secured to a block with washers and nuts that is fastened to the top of the bottom chord of the trusses. But you can only use this method when you have accessible attic space above.  When you don’t, (when your house has living space above your garage for example), you’ll need to use an alternative hardware support method.  

A couple of hardware variations include screwing eye lags up into the framing in your garage ceiling, or fastening a piece of perforated metal angle (similar to what is commonly used for supporting garage overhead door tracks and motors) to the framing in your ceiling with some 3″ Spax lag screws.  Then you can attach chain, or wire rope, or perforated metal straps, etc. to the eye lags or metal angle to support your shelves below.

I recently came up with a hardware method that still allows you to use threaded rod, with a slight variation at the top, that works in cases where you don’t have accessible attic space above.  You use a coupling nut to connect the top of the threaded rod to an eye bolt.  Then you use a quick link to connect this eye-bolt to either an eye-lag screw or metal angle that is screwed into the framing in the garage ceiling.  Here’s some pictures of this garage overhead mightyshelves hardware variation:


garage overhead mightyshelves with hardware variation

4-ft. shelves over garage door


overhead garage shelves

DIY Material Cost Breakdown:

  • 5′ x 3/8″ threaded rod ($6/ea.)
  • 3/8″ coupling nut ($0.50/ea.)
  • 3/8″ eye bolt ($1/ea.)
  • quick link ($3/ea.)
  • eye lag ($1/ea.)
  • 3/8″ fender washers ($0.25/ea.)
  • 3/8″ nut ($0.15/ea.)

17 Replies to Garage Overhead Mightyshelves Alternative Hardware Methods

  1. Randy says:

    Hi Kurt, this design is exactly what I’ve been looking for. Nice job! We have a finished basement so “junk room” availability is limited. This will allow me to make use of all that space in the garage that isn’t being used now. Great idea!

  2. Mike says:


    If I was to use perforated angle since I don’t have access, what would you recommend to secure the angle to the ceiling? I assume some sort of lag screw?

    • Yes- I’ve been using Spax screws that are a little more narrow than traditional lag screws. They don’t require pre-drilling a pilot hole and they have a very nice wide truss head. Check them out!

  3. Christie says:

    I am looking to hang some shelves in a basement from the ceiling. It would be over the washer & dryer. It is an older home and the washer/dryer sit on a 4″ concrete base, plus there is about 7″ behind which I can not access for wall shelves because of my height. Is it possible to use this set up as free hanging? I would like to be able to access the shelves without having to stand on a ladder. The shelves would hold, laundry detergent and soap. Could I use a 90degree shelf bracket with 2×4 for the rails? I am looking for solutions to a difficult situation. Thought are appreciated. Thanks!

    • Christie,

      Mightyshelves don’t need to be limited to just garages- I think they could work in many other spaces as well. It sounds to me like your idea of using shelf brackets and 2×4 rails would work. And if the shelf is just supporting some detergent and soap, I bet you could down-size the design a bit. (But I’m no engineer)

  4. KASHAR says:

    thanks for this great idea. I have got all the materials except lag screws and chains to hang to ceiling as I have no access to attic. I will using chain in place of threaded rod. I could not find the lag screws you mentioned. I am using 5/8″ lag screws which are 4 inch long. Do you think these will work ? once I finish, I will show to picture. One more thing, I have to spend much more on materials as compared to the material cost breakdown you have: materials are expensive here in canada.

    • Yes- the 5/8″ lag screws should still work and the chains should be just fine as well. I just prefer the threaded rod over chains, and I like SPAX screws because they don’t require pre-drilling a pilot hole like the thicker lags do. (If you don’t pre-drill for normal lag screws, you’ll probably end up splitting and weakening the wood you’re fastening the shelves to).

  5. Brian says:

    Great build suggestions! I installed a 10′ section in my garage. However, with this build you cannot fully level the shelves. If you try tighten down the top nuts on the all thread, it just lifts the quick link. I’m sure this isn’t an issue for most, but I happened to get a pretty warped 2×4 and it causes one corner to sag. Unfortunately my home Depot had a really bad selection of 10′ 2x4s. They did have a large selection of spax screws though.

    • It definitely helps matters when the wood isn’t warped like that, but don’t get too discouraged if the shelf isn’t leveled to perfection. It might help a little to level it once it’s weighted if the warped wood is wanting to lift one end.

  6. Jeremy says:

    How much weight do you think this set up can hold?

    • Jeremy,

      These shelves aren’t engineered, so I don’t know the design strength and weight limits. They seem to work for most things people typically need a place to store like Christmas decorations and storage bins. It’s just the best DIY overhead shelving design I’ve come up with based solely on my own limited judgement. But if built well, they do seem to be really strong.

  7. Brian says:

    This is a great idea!
    Any reason something like this can’t be used to save a few pieces/dollars?

    2-sided hanger bolts.

  8. Jason says:

    For the alternate hardware installation, what size eye lags did you use? They look smaller than a 3/8ths. The 3/8 x 4 1/2 ” says it’s good for 275 pounds.

  9. Dave says:

    Hello- any suggestion in where to find the long threaded rods that have an eye / hook on them?



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