Mounting Shelf Without Damaging Walls?

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I need to mount the corner shelf in this picture on my daughter's dorm room wall. I am not allowed to drill holes in the wall or damage the walls in any way.
http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/687/clockshelf.jpg/
The shelf is to hold a clock radio. Last year I used strips of Velcro on the sides and it held for a few months, but eventually the weight of the clock and it's use (pushing buttons) caused the Velcro to pull off of the wall.
I then added the dowel (again using Velcro) mounted at a 45 degree angle below the shelf to support the front and it worked fine, but I didn't like the look.
Does anyone have any suggestions as to how to mount the shelf so that it holds without the dowel? 3M Command strips? Removable Silicon adhesive?
Yes, I am aware that any surface mount that I use could fail because of the paint on the walls, but let's assume that the paint will hold.
Thanks!
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It's probably just the size of the picture and the way the shelf fills the frame, but the shelf looks thick and heavy. Is it? You don't mention what the wall surface is. Drywall, concrete block, plaster?
If it's drywall you might think about those Hercules Hook things. Two of those would hold it and the holes left would be tiny. A dab of toothpaste with a little coloring in it is the usual way for a tenant to cover up a hole cheaply and quickly.
R
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The Sharpie was placed there as perspective to help viewers judge the size, but I guess it didn't work as well as I had hoped. My bad!
The shelf is made from 3/4" veneered pine with 1" high strips of the same material used as the side rails. The rails are there mainly for aesthetics and to give me some more surface to add Velcro to. In other words, the shelf is not very heavy. The sides are 1 3/4" high, including the rails and the shelf itself, but the rails themselves are only 3/4" thick. It's hard to tell from the picture, but there is a 1" gap between the bottom of the shelf and the band saw table because the shelf is supported by the side rails.
FWIW, the back corner is cut off to allow for the clock's power cord to hang down behind the shelf when it's mounted in the corner above a bed.
I have similar shelves for some small speakers in my house and I used screws and/or toggle bolts through the side rails to mount them to the walls. Unfortunately, I can't screw into the walls at either of my girl's colleges, so the shelf must be surface mounted.
The walls are most likely block or plaster since it's an old dorm building. Definitely not drywall. They are painted, so I know that I'm at the mercy of how well the paint holds up. As I said, the shelf worked well last year once I added the dowel as a brace, but it doesn't look as clean as just the shelf alone.
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On 8/17/2011 8:40 AM, DerbyDad03 wrote:

3m vhb tape. with a lower 45 support to prevent torquing the shelf off, it might be impossible to remove, but it doesn't leave holes in the wall.
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On Wed, 17 Aug 2011 09:10:51 -0700, chaniarts

Right. He can say "I didn't damage the wall, I just added to it."
--Vic
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I would suggest a painters "push-up" pole. Use an appropriate sized conduit clamp , mount it to the shelf,around the pole. Then simply set the push -up against the wall and extend to get compression. Did a similar thing in a rented apartment once, but with several shelves attached to the pole (mini speakers.) For appearance sake, your daughter could wrap the pole with some snazzy type ribbon as a decoration!
Bill in Plano
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Thanks Bill, that's an interesting concept.
Unfortunately I am not familiar with a "painters push-up pole" and Googling the term wasn't much help (lots of hit for fiberglass attenna masts).
Is it something I'll find if I run over to a big box store or dedicated paint store?
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Thanks Bill, that's an interesting concept.
Unfortunately I am not familiar with a "painters push-up pole" and Googling the term wasn't much help (lots of hit for fiberglass attenna masts).
Is it something I'll find if I run over to a big box store or dedicated paint store?
Sorry I wasn't more specific DD. The pole is an extendable pole that screws into/onto a paint roller that allows you to reach high places for painting i.e.. ceilings, high walls. You loosen, extend to desired length and tighten back up. Any paint,hardware, Big Box store carries them. HTH
Bill in Plano
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Yeah...went over to HD during lunch and checked out the extension poles. It's a thought that I'll keep in mind.
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There are about 1000 other ways to position a clock radio so it is accessible from a bed. Why do you feel the need to intentionally handicap yourself by limiting the solutions to THIS shelf?
Personally, I'd try Command strips. If not by sticking the shelf directly to the wall, then by hanging the shelf from 3-4 Command Hooks.
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On Aug 17, 12:00pm, snipped-for-privacy@rochester.rr.com wrote:

I don't know how much time you've spent in college dorm rooms, but some of them are pretty small and will typically house 2 and sometimes 3 students. Space is at a premium.
Both of my daughters have their beds "lofted" so that they can use the area underneath for a futon. Since their beds are essentially the highest surface level in the room, there really aren't "about 1000 other ways to position a clock radio so it is accessible from a bed" - at least not in a location where it can easily be set/snoozed/reset with a simple reach of the hand.
In the case where we used the shelf last year, the only other place for the clock radio would have been on the window ledge which is probably about 3 feet below the top of the matress and behind the curtains. Not exactly a prime location for a clock radio. You wouldn't even be able to *see* it from your pillow, never mind being able to set/snooze/reset it easily. Imagine if you had to place your clock radio on the floor, a foot beyond the head of your bed and behind a curtain. How accessible would you consider that?
As a matter of fact, my daughters sleep in bunk beds at home and the one in the top bunk has a similar corner shelf (screwed to the wall) for her clock radio. She also has a second shelf that she uses to charge her cell phone and ipod while keeping them within easy reach of her bed. I made them for her bedroom many years ago and they work so well that I made some more for their dorm rooms.
The corner shelf solution is ideal for a dorm room or any room with a raised bed. My daughter has had comments like "Wow...I wish my dad would make me one of those! It's only the mounting that's a bit of pain when you don't want to/aren't allow to damage the walls.
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On Wed, 17 Aug 2011 09:42:35 -0700 (PDT), DerbyDad03
Check this out.
http://www.dormco.com/Bed_Post_Shelf_p/dormco-bps.htm
--Vic
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One major issue with those units:
Dad didn't make them for his daughters. ;-)
I'll show them to my daughters and see what they think.
Thanks!
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Only about 4 years...

Had a loft in the dorm room for two years, so I know all about it. The platforms on mine were about 12" wider than the mattresses. Plus we had a shelf that ran between the bed platforms on the window end of the room. Plenty of places to put a clock radio without fretting over an impossible task. I had my stereo and my meager CD collection up there too.
Heck, you can even screw the shelf to the loft. Fasten an upright post in the corner and put the shelf on the post.
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On Aug 17, 2:30pm, snipped-for-privacy@rochester.rr.com wrote:

2 girls in 2 different colleges:
Platforms are no wider than the mattresses.
No shelf between the bed and window/wall.
I can't screw anything to the "loft": They're metal bunk frames and I'd probably get in just as much trouble ($) if I drilled holes in the bed frames. Clamping a shelf to the bed posts might be an option, but putting the shelf in an otherwise unused corner is really the best place for it. It can be seen from anywhere in the room since it faces out and it's easily reachable by the person in the bed.
An upright post is an option, but both the girls are both being moved into their rooms which are 200 miles apart and 300 miles from home on the same day - this coming Sunday. I don't have a lot of time to rig something up in the short time period that I'll be spending in each room and driving the 700 mile loop it's going to take to get them to their schools.
As far as "fretting over an impossible task", you must not be reading my posts very thoroughly. I have stated more than once that I have mounted one shelf with velcro and a dowel set at 45 degrees and it worked fine all last year. In fact, it's been mounted and unmounted 3 times over 3 semesters. All I was asking for was a suggestion that eliminated the dowel since it looks much "cleaner" without it. The task is not only far from "impossible", it's extremely doable and has been done multiple times before.
I've already made the shelf for my other daughter and I've cut the dowel in case I need it, but if a non-dowel suggestion comes along, I'll welcome it and use it in both rooms. There's not a lot of "fretting" going on...just a Dad looking for another option.
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Band clamps a couple corner brackets to the bed and screw your shelf to the brackets.
What's the next project we're working on...? ;)
R
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On 08/17/11 4:10 PM, RicodJour wrote:

As noted in an earlier post, the bed frame does not extend above the mattress. In addition, a shelf attached to the frame itself couldn't be on any post against a wall and on any other side would stick out into the room.
Now, if a post was band clamped to the frame and the shelf was attached to the post, that might raise it to a usable height.
That's something I'll consider...
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You're being an obstructionist. ;)

That's the ticket!

You could do it six ways from Tuesday with band clamps that wouldn't mar the wall or the bed frame and it would be positionable whereever your daughters thought it worked best. One of the hardest things about being a designer is letting go and allowing something to be used in the wrong place or the wrong way just because the recipient prefers it that way.
R
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wrote:

do they still make those bathroom shelving units that have two spring- loaded floor-to-ceiling vertical poles that support shelves between them,for over the toilet tank? IIRC,they were sold at Target and other similar stores,and probably at Bed,Bath,and Beyond.
you could use it as-is,or use one pole alone with a homemade shelf as someone else here suggested earlier.
--
Jim Yanik
jyanik
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On 8/17/2011 8:50 AM, DerbyDad03 wrote:

Nobody else suggested it, so I will- one or two of those poles with the rubber pads on the end, like they use in trucks to keep cargo from shifting. HF has cheap ones for around 20 bucks. Put in corner, jack till tight, and clamp or bolt your shelf to it. Maybe this is what the other guy meant by painter's push pole. For safety, I do recommend through-drilling once in place, and putting a hairpin clip (like used on trailers and scaffolding) through the overlapping parts of the tube. That is in case somebody starts playing with it during a dorm party. If not that, use a lot of zip ties to keep people from pressing the release button. You'll understand once you see it.
Me, I'd just use a pretty 4x4 with 12" square 3/4 plywood plates screwed to top and bottom, with shims under the bottom plate hammered into place till pole is tight against ceiling. If dorm has the usual textured gunnite on the concrete ceiling, a square of the white styrofoam is called for to keep from leaving a mark. A portable saw and cordless drill in trunk of car would making fitting it in on move-in day, a matter of a few minutes.
Ah- memories- building shelves and stereo racks and loft beds, for young ladies living in dorms.... (fat lot of good it did me, though their daddies did thank me.)
--
aem sends...




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