How to make an Auto Mechanic’s Creeper // Woodworking | I Like To Make Stuff

hey I'm Bob and I like to make stuff today I'm going to make mechanic's creeper if you've ever had to work on your car and had to fix something where you had to slide underneath you know that it's pretty hard to do it's messy down there and there's usually not very much space so to get in and out easily mechanics use something called a creeper not the creeper since I got my landcruiser I've had to fix a few things and a change my own oil so I've had to slide underneath the vehicle a few times buying a mechanic's creeper is one of those things I always think I need to do but I never think of it when I'm at the store so I decided to make my own and it's really really simple in fact you can probably do it with scrap that you already have laying around I'm going to add a couple of small features to it just to make it a little bit more interesting but this is a quick and easy project and you'll save a lot of money alright let's do it I wanted to use 3/4 inch plywood for this but I didn't actually have a big enough scrap to use for this particular project but I also didn't want to buy a full sheet so I went to the store and bought a quarter sheet this is a 2 by 4 piece and yes it's more expensive per square foot to buy it this way but if you don't actually need a full sheet of plywood you can save a lot of money I'm getting ready to move so I'm actually trying to get rid of scraps instead of adding 3/4 of a sheet of plywood to my shop but if you have a scrap of this around already you're good to go to make it runners from the side of this thing I just got someone by force to use I'm about to cut them down on the minor saw but I wanted to point out that my 24 by 48 inch panel that I got is not actually 24 by 48 in fact the length of it is 47 and 7/8 you're actually missing the kerf of the blade on both dimensions of that piece of lumber so just keep that in mind if you buy pre-cut sheets of plywood they're probably going to be a little bit smaller than you actually think they are just measure them so that your pieces fit correctly I cut down four pieces of one by four two pieces for the long sides and two pieces for the shorter side the dimensions of this creeper are really entirely up to you I just lay down on a board and kind of figured out how big it needed to be so that I could use it comfortably the point of this thing is to keep you as close to the ground as possible so that you can fit underneath the vehicle and since we're going to be laying on this piece this is going to go on the bottom we're going to build up each side and then have something that hangs over each end to hold the Castor's this creeper does have to carry your body weight so I used a lot of glue before these pieces on then I pre-drilled holes and drill down screws all along that piece I did the same thing for the other side and then I figured I might as well put them in from the bottom as well just to make it that much more secure so I flipped it over and added a screw every eight or ten inches going to take these 31 inch boards and lay them across the two that I already put on they overhang so that the casters can connect from the bottom but there's a big gap here in the middle that I don't want so I'm just going to add a scrap in the middle and that will give us three points of connection which should be plenty once again I use a whole lot of wood glue on all of the surfaces that we're going to touch and then I pre-drilled holes both on the top and the bottom and drove on a lot of screws just things plenty strong a lot of the creepers that you'll see are not laid out like this in fact they typically have one of these pieces on the bottom and then one of them on the top I decided to put them both on the top for a specific reason the ones on the end are overhanging so that they can hold the casters but I wanted to have this gap here as well to make a slot for tools every time I get under a car I realize that I've got the wrong wrench or the wrong side socket and so for this one I'm going to make a little tray here where I can put the tools that I think I need in this tray and take them under the car with me I think that should make it easier but we'll see so I cut these two strips I'm just going to glue them on and make a little channel for the tools to fit it people often ask why I use CA glue sometimes and wood glue at different times and in this case these two little pieces serve no structural purpose they're really just there to stop the tools from rolling off so I use CA glue because it dries so quickly wood glue takes quite a bit longer to dry and so I usually reinforce it with nails or screws so that I can keep working I hope that answers that question all right let's move on all of this material is three quarters of an inch thick so I used a half inch roundover bit in my trim router and just rounded off all of the edges this made it so the top edge was rounded but it didn't go all the way down to the bottom of the material to be honest the simple round overtook it from several pieces of wood screwed together to something that was a little bit more finished and the final stage was to paint it all black you could spend a lot of time painting here but honestly spray paint is great because it's just going to get dirty and greasy from being underneath the car I also came up with a really simple way to add work lights using small flashlights and chip clips all I did was cram the flashlight in the chip clip as far as I could make it go and then marked up the areas that needed to be cut out they use the general tool with the sanding drum to round out these areas and gave it a curve that fit the outside of the flashlight with a little bit of testing I got it to fit pretty well next I had to mount it to the creeper so I drilled a hole in the chip clip that was the same size as these flexible hoses that I had from a previous project can use some CA glue to lock it all together using some five-minute epoxy here will probably be necessary as this gets used but it all held together really nicely next I had two mounted captures and I just laid these in place on the overhangs and marked the holes I drilled these out from the bottom side with a backer board so there wasn't any blowout then I put in some bolts with washers and nuts to hold the casters in place all said and done the bottom of the caster is about an inch below the plywood which is really good then I just put on the other three casters following the same process to mount the work lights I found my drill bit that was the closest size but smaller to the end of the flexible tubing I drilled the hole in the wood and made sure that it wasn't too big and then I mixed up a little bit of five-minute epoxy filled it down into the hole and then stuck in the bottom of the hose did the same thing for the other side and let these dry for just a few minutes then they were ready to use from this position they've got a really good range of motion but if you don't need them you can just shove them out of the way next up it was time to make a cushion to go in this and make it comfortable to use I used upholstery foam for this it is a little bit expensive but a lot of fabric stores have 40 or 50 percent off coupons this stuff cuts great with the bandsaw just be careful keep your hands away from the blade because it will catch I use some spray adhesive to add a layer of vinyl to this cushion I would imagine there's probably a specific product made for just the situation but spray adhesive actually worked really well if you spray it onto one surface and let it dry a little bit it's kind of sticky if you spray it onto two surfaces let them dry and then stick them together it's very very strong so I sprayed it onto the foam and onto the vinyl let them both dry and then press it together doing the corners was a little bit tricky I didn't have a plan going into it and I should have thought a little bit more of how to cut diagonals and fold them over in the right way it ended up being okay but a little bit more time there would probably make it look a little bit more finished I kind of worked my way through it and by the time I got to the fourth corner it actually looked pretty good also I chose marine vinyl for this because I figured it would be really easy to wipe off dirt and oil from it and it should last through the elements like it would in a boat after this was done it popped right down into place and I got to test it out this thing turned out way cooler than I actually thought it was going to be I thought it would be super simple but it actually turned out to be nice and very useful I mean this thing's pretty much just a piece of plywood with wheels on it but just a few little additions to it make it really handy I was a little worried about how well those small casters would work with my body weight on them but each one of those is rated at like 175 pounds apiece so they do just fine if you want to make one of these of your own I'm going to have some really simple plans on my site you can go get those and check them out I hope you found this one useful let me know what you think about it down in the comments below I've got lots of other types of projects that you might be interested in as well as a channel and a second channel so be sure to subscribe to both of those that's it for this one guys thanks for watching I'll see you next time

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