Making A Modular Book Shelf  

by Megan Cherry

Like most things building a coat rack or a modular book shelf that covers an entire wall is not that hard if you have the proper tools and a little know how. Using the modular technique you simple build the book shelf in sections and assemble them together on the wall. The first step is to do some measuring if your wall happens to be 12 feet long it is very simple you can either make 3 sections 4 feet wide or 4 sections 3 feet wide. It is probable best to go with the 4 sections this will require more material and work but a book shelf that is four feet long may not be so good at holding up books.

At the bottom of your new bookcase most people have the baseboard trim extend on the bookcase this gives the built in look so you will need to build up the base which is simple enough build a base out of MDF medium density fiberboard that is the correct height to set you new bookcase on. At the ceiling it is a good idea to either finish or top out the book case with a crown molding or with a final trim piece that is somewhat adjustable. I have never found a ceiling that is 100 percent straight or flat. The other reason you need some additional room is that you would not be able to get your new bookcases in with out a little gap at the top so plan on this from the beginning and you should be al right.

He actual book cases and shelves can be made from MDF with a solid wood front edge if you plan on painting the bookcase if you want a stain then you may want to consider using plywood Birch, and Oak plywood is readily available at most home centers. The cases themselves are simple long boxes you can use a but joint on the corners and cut a rabbit joint in the back to accept a piece of ? inch plywood to add strength and stability. You will need to decide if you want adjustable shelving or fixed. With some proper planning most people can get away with fixed shelves as once the shelves are placed it is rare that they are ever moved again. Adjustable shelves can be done in one of two ways you can drill a series of holes that will accept a pin to support the shelve or you can install metal strips that allow for special clips to be inserted every ? inch or so to act as shelve supports.

The selves can be made again from MDF or plywood it is a good idea to add a piece of solid wood across the front this hides the edge of the plywood or MDF and adds some strength to the shelve.

About the Author

Megan Cherry composes articles for To see our line of white coat racks or if your looking for a {a href=""} custom coat racks we can make them also.