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Make a Metal Coat Rack

Learn how to make a marine life metal coat rack with plasma cut designs. I collaborated with my cousin Peder Sveen, who is studying Marine Biology in Idaho. We used the plasma cutter to cut out a shark and swordfish. We had a great time making this and he is happy with his custom, marine life metal coat rack!

Metal Coat Rack

Supply and Tool List for Metal Coat Rack

14 gauge steel sheet (31″ x 9″ final dimension)
We bought a larger sheet and used excess steel for the plasma cut shark and swordfish
Cost: $11 at your local steel shop

4 – 1/2″ x 3 1/2″ steel rods
2 – 1/2″ x 3/4″ steel rods
Cost: $8 at your local steel shop

1 can of steel finishing spray

Tools:

Hobart Flux Core 110 Volt Welder
Hobart 250CI 110 Volt Plasma Cutter

Ryobi 18V Angle Grinder
Ryobi Orbital Sander
Ryobi Drill Kit

Jack Clamp (set of 2) Use my JackClamp coupon code to get $5 off any order over $50 – Code: DIYPETE5
Metal Cutoff Saw

Graphtec 24″ CE6000 Desktop Vinyl Cutter

Welding Gloves
Welding Spark Mask
Hobart Soapstone Pen

Square, Tape Measure, Pencil, Ear Protection

The Build

Be sure to watch the video (above), as it shows a lot more of the how-to steps and details of this project. Below are a few photos from this build.

First, we used Adobe Illustrator to design a shark and a swordfish. From Illustrator, we moved to my vinyl decal cutter to print out the designs for the marine life.

metal coat rack, coat rack, vinyl decal

After cutting the 14 gauge steel sheet to size, we used the excess steel for the plasma cut designs. The decals gave us a perfect design to follow, on the steel, while plasma cutting the shark and swordfish out.

metal coat rack, coat rack, plasma cut

After cutting the designs out with the plasma cutter, we used the angle grinder to clean them up. We then sanded the edges and surface even smoother with an orbital sander and 220 grit sandpaper.

metal coat rack, plasma cutter, marine life, coat rack

For the metal coat rack, we wanted the marine life to really pop. We left the steel back and the rods a raw, cold-rolled look (just did some light clean up with a scotch pad). After sanding the designs smooth, I used muriatic acid to strip and clean the steel further. *Please wear gloves, eye protection, and a respirator and use caution when applying muriatic acid, it is very harsh on the skin*

metal coat rack, plasma cutter, marine life, coat rack

Together, we welded the coat hangers onto the steel back, drilled the holes 16″ on center for mounting, and welded the shark and swordfish on.

metal coat rack, coat rack, plasma cut

The coat hangers are 1/2″ thick steel rod that we cut to 3 1/2″ long. The coat hangers are spaced roughly every 9″ across and 1 3/4″ up from the bottom. The steel rods attached to the marine life are 1/2″ thick by 3/4″ long.

marine-life-metal-coat-rack-diy-pete-

After some more light clean up on the piece, we finished the whole piece with a steel spray finish.

metal coat rack, plasma cutter, marine life, coat rack

We mounted it into the wall with screws and hung up our coats and hats!

metal coat rack, plasma cutter, marine life, coat rack

What a cool touch to any wall! Peder should feel pleased and accomplished whenever he sees this in his dorm room. We had a great time making this project.

marine-life-metal-coat-rack-diy-pete-8

Peder standing next to the marine life metal coat rack! We had a blast collaborating on this and he had a did a great job on the metal working. Have you built a cool project with a family member lately? It’s always great to spend time with family and making art! Please comment below and share photos, I’d love to hear about it!

metal coat rack, plasma cutter, marine life, coat rack

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  • Jared Cross

    Pete, when are you doing a plasma cutter and welder giveaway!? Looks like an expensive hobby to pick up!

    • I need to get a company to sponsor that Jared!! 🙂 Yeah it was definitely an investment. Although I’ve seen some nice flux -core welders go for around $90 to $150 used on Craigslist which is a good deal. But the plasma cutters run around $800 new and are hard to come by used. A fun hobby for sure though. Cheers!