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Home: Different Types Of Garage Shelving And Their Uses

By Lauren Bracy

Shelves are the best way to have all your stuff organized. Garage shelving is convenient way of storing items in a home, garage or business, retailer shop.

Shelves can be built in any space possible, of various dimensions and sizes as well. These shelves usually come in square, round, curved or rectangular shapes.

The spacing of the shelves needs to be in such a way that they are able to store the maximum possible with the least waste of space. The thickness of the shelves should be in such a way that they should be able to hold the weight of the products which are stored on them.

More importantly, the depth should be such that the products should not be jutting out of the shelves nor should they be too deeply placed in which makes it inconvenient to remove.

Here are some common guidelines for shelf designs:

  • · The bookcases are usually not higher than 84 inches. Small bookcases are between 30 and 42 inches high and the highest shelf should be high enough that an average person be able to reach it. If the shelves need to be accessed while sitting, the highest shelf should not be more than 60 inches off the floor and the lowest should be 3-4 inches above floor level.
  • · The width or the span of the shelf is based on the aesthetics as well as the sag considerations. When the shelves store only books, the weight of the books will cause the shelves to sag in the middle and this should be avoided therefore, book shelves are usually 30 – 36 inches wide.
  • · The depth of the shelves is dependent on the size of the items which need to be stored. These usually are between 6 and 24 inches and not deeper.
  • · The spacing of the shelf ranges from 7 inches to 15 inches and most bookshelves has a range between 8 and 12 inches.
  • · Well built shelves have minimal side to side racking. Else, there could be a diagonal back brace or corner blocks or even support cleats, both on the top as well as the bottom
  • · The shelving material is based on the stiffness. Wood is stiffer than plywood which again is better than particle board. Particle board will have sag when the shelf span is more.

In order to increase the stiffness of the shelves, the shelf span should be supported or else vertical pieces can be used for additional support. A cleat of 1 – 2 inches can be used on the front or the back or else the edges can be screwed on. Another method is to use thicker shelving material or torsion box construction.

When shelves need to be fixed, the methods which can be employed are:

Butt joint has minimal racking resistance. There are quarter rounds or cleats, but these make the height reduced at the ends and are unattractive too. Dado can be used and this is fairly simple and yet strong.

Sliding dovetail is the strongest of joints and it allows for good racking resistance. Dowels allow for strong, precise alignments and minimal resistance to racking. Biscuits also are strong and simple.

Metal brackets look unattractive and therefore are used only for utility shelves.

The different kinds of shelving which can be used are metal shelving, wire shelving as well as plastic shelving in addition to wood. There are also different kinds of garage shelving units which are available in various materials including steel.

If one wants, rather than go in for shelving units, they can make use of the unused wall space and create floating shelves.

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