12:12 PM 10/31/2011
My book shelves are a mixture of cheap cabinets from the usual cheap cabinet shops and the street. I want to install adjustable bookshelves on a demising wall in my brownstone. The wall is brick and plaster. I would use steel standards and brackets from Home Depot. They would be 16" on center and shelves would span at least three brackets. Can I do this without adding backing to the wall? and what fastening has to be used?
Books are heavy, and nothing short of really strong will suffice. I would not trust any wall hanging setup as brick and plaster is unlikely to reliably support the great weight.
I would recommend a support system based on the floor.
12:41 PM 10/31/2011 | 0 Votes
Ok, I have my lumber racks on a brick wall and they hold hundreds of pound of wood. This is what I had to do though and this is what I often do when hanging something very heavy on a wall of questionable integrity - particularly when the wall may be uneven and may not allow whatever is being placed on it to sit firmly: I place some 1x3 or 1x4 on the wall, securing that with many anchors and screws. then I attach the brackets to the 1x material (in the case of my lumber racks, it is 2x6's). For extra security, I have put PL premium behind the wood. Of course, when we do this in someone's house, we dress the wood up a little with maybe a routed edge and some paint or stain so it does not look like it belongs hanging in the garage or even worse, the outhouse.
Now, their are ways to get anchors to hold in to plaster on their own, but as Bruce mentions, it could be problematic. In many cases, the plaster on brick combo will crumble when drilling into it, so you must go very deep with screws and anchors. Sometimes we even have to put epoxy into the holes to secure the anchors.
1:36 PM 10/31/2011 | 0 Votes
One solution is to drill into the plaster and brick and insert a wooden dowel. The dowel must fit tightly - so that you have to hammer it in to the hole. The hole should be at least 2 inches deep. Make the dowel longer than the hole - and then shave off the excess once you can't hammer it in any more. Then anchor the brackets to the dowel. I've never had a problem using this technique. I've tried lead anchors but the brick was too crumbly to properly accomodate them. Long dowels in either oak or a softer wood can be purchased at most hardware stores.
8:21 AM 11/01/2011 | 0 Votes
I would recommend to back it on the wall, since I would be to scared that it wouldn't last for a long time. This is too risky. Books are very heavy and this can get problematic after some time. Unfortunately I don't have a better solution for you, but good luck with your project and your books!
8:21 AM 11/02/2011 | 0 Votes