How to Make Wooden Sports Lockers

By Charles Perry ; Updated September 15, 2017

Things Needed

  • 2 sheets 5/8-inch plywood, smooth on both sides
  • 7 boards, 1-inch-by-1-inch-by-8-feet
  • Handheld circular saw
  • Handheld jig saw
  • Helper
  • Caulking gun
  • Caulking gun wood adhesive
  • Screw gun
  • No. 8 1/4-inch flat-head sheet metal screws
Wooden sports lockers attach to each other for support.

The locker room at Harvard is made from wood. The lockers have open fronts which afford the best ventilation. The wood is heavily finished with sealer and varnish to prevent perspiration from penetrating into the wood and causing odors. Fashion your own Ivy League sports club space by accenting your workout room with classic handcrafted wooden lockers.

Cut Shelves, Top, Bottom and Cleat Stock

Use the circular saw to cut one piece of plywood 72 inches high by 25 1/2 inches wide. This is the locker back.

Use the circular saw to cut two pieces of plywood 72 inches high by 24 inches wide. These are the locker sides

Cut four pieces of 1-inch-by-1-inch cleat stock, 70 1/2 inches long. Cut eight pieces of 1-inch-by-1-inch cleat stock, 24 inches long. Cut eight pieces of 1-inch-by-1-inch cleat stock, 22 1/2 inches long.

Use the drill motor to make pilot holes in the cleat stock every 3 or 4 inches, starting 1 inch in from the ends. Use the drill motor to make a second set of pilot holes at right angles to the first set of holes. Stagger this second set of pilot holes between the first set.

Attach Cleat Stock to the Top, Bottom and Shelves

Use the caulking gun to run a bead of adhesive across the back of the top board, about 2/8 inch from the board's edge. Place a 24-inch piece of cleat stock over top of the adhesive. Move the cleat with your hands until it is flush with the top along the back and sides. Attach the cleat stock to the top with 1-inch screws.

Repeat this process with the bottom and the two shelves.

Repeat the process to attach the remaining 4 pieces of 1-inch-by-1-inch cleat stock, 24 inches long, to the fronts of the shelves, top and bottom.

Use the caulking gun to run a bead of adhesive about 3/8 inch from the edge between the front and back cleats attached to the top. Drop a piece of 1-inch-by-1-inch-by-22 1/2-inch cleat stock in between the front and back cleats. Push the cleat stock flush with the edge and attach with the screw gun. Repeat for the other side of the top. Clean any excess adhesive with a damp rag.

Repeat the process described in Step 4 to attach the remaining pieces of 1-inch-by-1-inch-by-22 1/2-inch cleat stock to the sides of the bottom and both shelves.

Use the caulking gun, adhesive, screw gun and screws to attach four pieces of cleat stock to the sides of both locker sides. Center the cleat stock, leaving a 3/4-inch gap at either end.

Assemble the Case

Lay the locker back flat on your worktable.

Use the caulking gun and adhesive to run a bead of adhesive along the top of the locker back, about 1/2 inch from the edge. Have a helper hold the locker top, cleat side down, over the bead of glue. Move the locker top with your hands until it is flush with the top of the locker back and both sides. Use the screw gun to attach the locker top to the locker back by driving 1-inch screws through the pilot holes in the cleat, into the locker back.

Repeat this process to attach the locker bottom and both shelves to the locker back.

Repeat this process to attach one side to the locker back, top, bottom and both shelves. Repeat with the other side.

Finish the Locker

Set the locker upright. Paint it with primer and let dry.

Paint the locker with your choice of color.

Add hooks for hanging belts and sports equipment.

Install a hanger bar for clothing.

Make Another Locker

Make another set of parts, minus one side and the cleats for one side of the top, bottom and sides. The second locker will share a side with the first locker.

Attach the unused side cleats directly to the completed locker.

Use the caulking gun, adhesive, screw gun and screws to assemble all of the parts as before, less the side and side cleats for the top, bottom and shelves.

Lift -- with a helper -- the assembled second locker upright. Jockey it into position so that it fits around the cleat stock you installed on the outside of the first locker.

Use the caulking gun, adhesive, screw gun and screws to secure the second locker to the first locker. Finish with sealer, paint, hooks and hanger rack as before.