Building a shelving unit can be a fun project suitable for even the most inexperienced DIYers. Whilst you can always cheat and buy a flat-pack shelving unit, building your own allows you to customize the unit to your very own specs – you can make it as wide, as tall and as deep as you require. For those wanting to get stuck into this task, here are a few steps to take.
Design your shelving unit
First of all, you should take a moment to think about the design. Measure up the space in which you’re going to place your unit to get an idea of the size and then start writing down the measurements so that you know how much materials to source. You don’t have to rely on stacked shelves – you could be more ambitious and consider a creative design. Your unit doesn’t even have to be freestanding and could be hanging from the wall.
Choose your materials
You’re free to choose any timber you like when building your unit, but if you want to keep things basic, plywood is probably your best choice. For shelves carrying lots of weight, you may want to consider a tough wood such as blockboard. You can buy timber for cheap at the likes of The Home Depot. You’ll also need some screws and potentially some metal brackets, which you can find at most DIY stores.
Measure and mark up
Next, you should measure up your wood and mark it so that you know exactly where to cut. A pencil, ruler and tape measure is all you’ll need for this. You can mark where to put the screws in later.
Now you can start cutting all your pieces up. You can do this using a handsaw and a vice, however, it may be much quicker and easier to invest in a circular saw. You can compare these saws to find the best one at sites such as Plumb and Lined. Lay out each piece on the floor after cutting to check that they all match in length. You may want to sand off the ends with a sanding block to give it a quality finish.
Assemble the unit
It’s now time to finally assemble your shelving unit. Mark where you’re going to put the screws in and make sure that they line up with the other parts. It’s worth putting two screws at either end of each joint just to provide that extra bit of security. If you’re opting for a conventional stacked shelving unit, you can start by fitting shelves to one of the two end supports and then fit the other end support on afterward (it’s best doing this on the ground). Even if your unit is designed to be freestanding, you may want to also screw it into the wall to give it that extra bit of sturdiness. Once your unit is up, feel free to add a finish such as paint or varnish.