View Full Version : Floating Shelf - Construct & Install
12-16-2001, 09:09 AM
I have seen a lot of floating shelves in my decorating magazines and would like to construct one as my first woodworking project. I am pretty sure I can figure out how to build one, but have no idea how to attach it to the wall. The shelves I have seen look like they are attached without any visible means of support, thus, it appears to be "floating" on the wall. Any help will be appreciated.
12-16-2001, 03:55 PM
Hello, Brenda, welcome to the forum. I love seeing questions like this; it reminds of myself about ten years ago, looking at pictures and thinking, "that's what I want! Now, let's se-e-e..." and just Doing It! Learned a lot, that way.
If you can order the back copy, Popular Woodworking (popwood.com) had an excellent explanation of floating shelves in their April 2000 issue. The magazine had so many questions and comments on an Ace Hardware ad in many magazines, that they went to Ace and asked to do an article on how to build and install the shelves. Basically, they are 'torsion boxes' which are hollow frameworks of two outer skins glued and nailed to an inner framework of support grid, then a supporting cleat is anchored to the wall studs with bolts and the 'grid' torsion box is hung on the cleat and secured to it out of sight on the top of it. It is well explained in the magazine, and I'm sure they have a back issue available. Torsion box construction is strong and light weight. Just be sure any such shelves are securely anchored into the studs behind your wall, and it will hold anything. Hope this helps. Good luck with your woodworking. -Barb S.
12-16-2001, 04:49 PM
American Woodworker had a good article about torsion boxes some years back, probably before Reader's Digest bought them. I can go upstairs and look through my old issues if you like.
12-17-2001, 03:46 AM
Thank you, Barbara! Before you go to a lot of trouble, let me see what I can track down. The description you provided was really helpful. I'll get back to you and let you know what I find out. Thanks again...
12-17-2001, 07:07 AM
Welcome to the forum :)
Attaching to the wall can be accomplished in many ways, and your options are, in part, guided by the type of wall.
You can cut keyholes in the shelf back, (there is a special router bit for this) Mortise pockets in the back for special hardware, or use through bolts and plug the holes.
Woodsmith magazine (Issue 127)had very good plans for an attractive shelf with drawers last year. It also featured a very unique and useful hanging system.
I hope this helps, let us know how you progress,
01-05-2002, 12:52 AM
Last year I helped paint 11 rooms in a rented house in Williamsburg or the owner would not refund the security deposit.
We did it in two days. In the one bathroom, they had this metal strip anchored into the wall with the glass inserted into it. We had to remove it so we could paint. The metal was brass and was anchored good into the wall. There is a deep groove that the glass goes into and then it is screwed into the metal with an allenwrench. It does look good. I have one here in the house somewhere that the kids brought home. It would be easy to install. You can do it!