Asked on Jun 2, 2018

What’s the best way to support book selves?

Bsi31307845Rachel's Trash~2~TreasuresJohnavallance82


I’m building a complete wall unit for A Lot of books. in our office. But I’m not sure what is the best way to support the selves. My plan is to use both glass and wood. Any thought/advice would be helpful. This is my first project like this.
9 answers
  • Do you want floating shelves or if using glass, how about decorative brackets?
  • Ken
    on Jun 2, 2018

    I'd build tall cabinets with no front, using several hanger bars across the back so you'll have solid wood to screw to the wall. Least expensive shelf supports are something called "shelf pegs". Drill evenly spaced 1/4" holes on both sides of the shelves to insert the shelf pegs. Make the cabinets no more than 36" wide so you won't have an issue with sagging. Use solid wood or 3/4" plywood, not particle board.
  • Lina Splichal
    Lina Splichal
    on Jun 2, 2018

    I cannot recommend glass shelves for books, as they are heavy. I suggest you build a framework and attach it to the wall. During construction, drill holes on the insides of the frameworks 1" apart to insert spacers and be able to adjust the height of the shelves. Alternatively, you can purchase strips and spacers to attach for the same function.
  • Gordon
    on Jun 2, 2018

    They look rather timid, but books gathered together are very heavy. I would not build wider than three feet. To build for the heaviest conditions will be the safest. Most Home Centers carry stair treads that are made from Oak.
    These are made usually one inch thick in various widths and lengths. One edge is rounded (bull nosed) over. This edge will be the front. The sides can be 3/4 oak or maple. You want your shelves to be stable so build them deep enough to provide proper support. May require attachment to wall to prevent tipping.
  • Sharon
    on Jun 2, 2018

    Definitely not. Books as a group are incredibly heavy and will pull any anchor right out of the studs. I know we had some professionally installed and one day they came crashing down and just about hit the secretary.
    Buy a metal and glass etagere if its glass you must have and spread the books out in small groups....
    or get one of these type shelving units....
    comes in 4 colors.
    Be sure whatever you get, fasten it to the wall with anchors to prevent it tipping over.
  • Johnavallance82
    on Jun 2, 2018

    Brackets or divisions in bookcase.
  • invest in a stud finder if you dont know how to or cant find them yourself. start 16'' from corner and tap with a hammer. listen for the sound, feel that its not hollow where you are tapping. if you dont find one at 16'', there will (should) be one at 24''. they are 24'' apart. drill directly into the stud. books are way too heavy to use drywall anchors
  • as far as gordons comment goes, 4 feet would be okay as long as the brackets are attached to the studs. one on each end and one in the middle
  • Bsi31307845
    on Jun 2, 2018

    Thank you all. Your advice is a huge help. Naomie I was thinking of floating if I eliminate the glass shelves and go with all wood. I would like to build a desk below shelves (eventually). To make it a complete working area. I’m going to do some more research, with the weight of all the books ( and there are a lot) the bracket in the studs may be the best support option. Thanks again everyone.
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