I have recenlty retired and find I now have time to do some of the things I
have put off for years.
I really need a bookcase in my hallway, but it can ony be 9" deep.
I have looked at quite a few, but the only ones that deep are pretty flimsy
and certainly would not take the weight of my books
The shelves would be 3 foot 6 inches width, and as mentioned 9" deep
What type of wood would I need to use to stop the shelves bowing, and what
One inch thick hardwood such as oak, ash or beech would probably cope, but
would be expensive. One inch thick softwood should cope providing there are
vertical supports at the mid-point of each shelf:
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The rear edge of each shelf can be supported by fixing to a thick plywood
back, and the front edges can be supported by fixing a vertical lip:
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Vertical lip on front edge
Are you wanting a bookcase or just shelves? If you're putting up just
shelves then I would suggest the brackets are not right at the end but about
9" in from the ends, possibly with a central bracket as well. By having the
brackets set in from the end means that the central bit is shorter and there
is a cantilever effect due to the overhanging ends.
Many many thanks for both replies.
I am going for the first option as it will be a book case that goes from the
floor to the ceiling
However, also thanks for the advise regarding the shelves. How I wish I had
known that before I decorated my sons bedroom and put the " now bowing"
Again, your help is really appreciated.
Another solution to the bowing shelves is to screw a strip of wood, long
side vertical, along the back (or front, you choose) underside of the
shelf. Not quite the neatest thing but you could disguise/prettify it.
I have just fitted the wood as suggested with a small moulding pinned to it.
It lookes pretty good and my son now has level shelves, and I have gained a
bit of respect as a DIYer
thanks very much to all
And another solution is to get some nice dowel and, starting from the floor,
cut a piece that just fits between the floor and the underside of the shelf
when it's level. The move up to the next one. OK, you end up with a pillar
in the middle, but this may be preferable to a pelmet hanging down. The
dowel doesn't have to be very thick. Half inch would do.
As a retired librarian, and the owner of well over 60 bookselves, I
must try to help you!
My own bookselves are 27" wide (call it 70cm) and are made of "solid"
wood, in fact parana pine which I think comes from Brazil. I notice
that those shelves which are 5/8" thick (which timber merchants call
"3/4" nominal") have bowed slightly under the weight of the books.
In another room I have some 24" wide and 7/8" thich (1" nominal) which
show NO sign of bending uncer the load of the books. Also to a length
of 24" I have some shelves made of 15mm laminated chipboard, which are
satisfactory on the whole for light books. I have only loaded them
with paperbacks, but would not try anything heavier.
I would have thought 9" deep was really on the deep side for any books
except really big ones. My shelves vary between 6", 7", 8", to 9"
wide for the biggest, and then 15" wide for the shelves supporting the
hi-fi. But I am using a really STRONG bracket system, called Spur,
bolted to the brick walls with gauge 14 screws.
Good luck, and good reading afterwards! I hope I haven't bored you
stiff. Let me know how you get on.
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