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I've got a piece of plywood attached to the wall from which I am going to hang this server rack. enter image description here

back of rack:

enter image description here

plywood: enter image description here

The rack is heavy ~50 lbs and I am trying to figure out the best way to hang this and keep it level. How would you guys hang this on the plywood, making sure that it is level? The problem I foresee is drilling the pilot holes and trying to keep them level, even if it off just a little bit, it will throw everything off kilter.

I am using 1x 3/8x1" and 1x 3/8x1-1/2" lag screws in each corner. Plywood is 3/4" and drywall is 1/2". enter image description here

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    Why can't you use a long level (or ruler with attached level), mark holes at the correct distance, pre-drill them, and then hang the rack? The first bolt should hold the rack until the rest are placed. After tightening one, and partially tightening second, use the level on the rack before fully tightening second and subsequent bolts. Dec 15, 2021 at 1:27
  • How heavy do you expect it to be populated with the equipment you’re putting in it? I’d consider using 4 lag screws at the top, where it will have the most force pulling outward.
    – Tim B
    Dec 15, 2021 at 4:34

2 Answers 2

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  • Use a level
  • Draw a line
  • Mark the hole locations
  • Punch the hole locations
  • Drill the hole locations (feel free to use a smaller bit first, then increase to the proper pilot for the lag size)
  • If you are fussy about exactly how level it is, adjust any tiny discrepancies by raising the low side as you wrench the bolts and fender washers into place. Properly tightened bolts will hold it without needing to have the edge of the hole touching them.
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Put one screw. Hang it and hold it there, having put a magnetic level on top. Level it. If you're pre-drilling; make a mark with a sharpie, take it back off and then do that.

If not pre-drilling, and you're by yourself, put your gun and screw #2 inside the cabinet, hang it, level it, and then drive that sucker in before it slips out of position. You can avoid having to pre-drill while you're trying to hang it if you use smaller screws that you swap out later one by one, once it's hung.

The only way to guarantee something is dead-center level is to put a level on that thing in-situ. A measuring tape can tell you where to put the first screw, to get it reasonably centered. But if you're off level by a single degree....

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