Karabitsu Sleds

A Mini Project

Three sleds for three karabitsu

September 2012

horizontal rule


We have all these karabitsu, right? The legs come off to make it easier to store and transport them, but sitting on the floor in the basement isn't going to be good for them in the long term. We get water in the basement sometimes, and storing them under this storage shelf unit means they have to be slid back and forth to get into them.

After struggling with several stopgap solutions to this situation, I gave up and built some sleds. The karabitsu rest on the sleds, the sleds keep the karabitsu up off the floor and have handles and glides to make it easier to slide them in and out like drawers.

Sled Handles

Handles mounted to the front rails make it easy to grasp the sled for sliding. At the corners, you can also see the zinc-plated wood screws I used to assemble the sleds.

Bare Sled

Without a karabitsu on them, the sleds look like this. Noirmally, having only one screw at each corner would be unstable, with the frame tending to skew. However, with a karabitsu resting on them, inside the front and back rails,the can't skew at all. See how the back rail is higher to keep the karabitsu from sliding off?

Sled Glides

Nail-on plastic chair glides keep the sleds just a little bit more off the floor, and make it smoother for the sleds to slide back and forth. These are replaceable if they wear out before the wood does, too. Hopefully, they will also protect the paint on the concrete floor of the basement from further scrtching.


The frame of each sled is made from pine 1by2, and inexpensive lumber. I probably could have saved money by pulling together or cutting apart scrap wood from the basement, but I wanted this mini-project to be quick and easy.

The handles are the cheapest metal handles from the hardware store. I could have just used extra pieces of wood, but this is classier.

For assembly I used #6 by 1" zinc plated wood screws. I don't really like this kind of screw, but I have plenty of them so I try to use them when the project isn't very important.

The Process

For each karabitsu, cut two pieces of 1by2 that are as long as the karabitsu is wide. Then cut two more pieces tht are about 2.5 inches longer than than the karabitsu. This accommodates the front and back rails, and leaves a small margin inside the frame.

Screw the frame together. I drilled pilot holes to keep the screws from splitting the wood. The front rail can be screwed on from the top or bottom, but the back rail is easier from the bottom. While you have it turned over, nail on the glides. This might be easier if you support the front rail with another piece of wood.

Flip the frame right side up, and screw the handle onto the top of the front rail. I attached mine pretty far forward.

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