Wood for Shelves


Old 06-27-08, 11:01 AM
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Wood for Shelves

Hey All;

I am putting up some shelves in my kid's play room and wanted to get some ideas.

Basically, i need shelves that are about 24" x 48" which my wife would like me to stain (dark stain) since the shelves will be out in the open (I removed the doors from what used to be a closet). What wood species would you guys use? Also, given stock sizes, what do you all think will be most available?

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Old 06-27-08, 01:45 PM
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You may get several opinions, but I would use cabinet grade (13 ply) plywood and edge band it with 1x3 or 1x2 to give it strength along the front edge where there is no support. I would, since it is in a play room, put in some sort of vertical support in the middle. I know kids, and they will pile up things that bigger people wouldn't. You know, heavy things on top and teddy bears on bottom. If you exceed the 24" width, then definitely use middle support. Trying to use dimension lumber for shelving may not be the best idea as it will need to be in two pieces for the depth and it will need more support than the cabinet grade plywood.
Old 06-27-08, 02:42 PM
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from my notes

span tables for book shelving
3/4" by 8" book shelving
sag of 1/8" in 30" is obvious
use zero one or two 3/4" x 1-1/8" hardwood apron on the shelves listed below, shelf length in inches

shelf slf + 1 slf + 2
particle bd 20 30 40
plywood 28 42 52
softwood same - - - - - - - - -
hardwood 34 51 60
slf + 1 = one hardwood apron

Last edited by WDIBAA; 06-27-08 at 02:43 PM. Reason: clarity
Old 07-05-08, 07:31 AM
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Below is a link to a "sagulator" courtesy of the good folks at Woodbin.

I don't know if this will help you, but have alook at it.

Old 07-07-08, 09:28 AM
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Great link.
Takes the guesswork out of estimate/design/buy/build.
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