How to Build Folding Shelves

Lead Image
What You'll Need
Plywood sheet or softwood block
Table saw anchors
Brackets for folding shelf
Power drill
Wood stain
Measuring tape

Folding shelves are a great storage device that do not interfere with the space around a room. Not only are these temporary storage options cheap to make, they can also surprise you with the relative ease with which they can be built.

Step 1 - Initial Steps

Measure the portion of the wall where you want to place the folding shelf after making them. Mark the wall so that it will be easy for you to measure the dimensions. Take a block of plywood that is 4 inches thick and cut it the size you measured with a table saw. Make sure that you saw the wood neatly so that it is straight. If the shelf is not placed in an area that is part of your main living area, plywood is a suitable option. If the shelf will be placed in the main interiors of the room, make sure you buy high quality pressure treated wood so that it does not look out of place with the furniture in the room.

Step 2: Sanding and Staining

Take medium grit sandpaper and vigorously rub the shelf so as to smooth the rough edges. After you sand the shelf to size, brush wood stain over the wood evenly. Leave it to dry for a few hours. Make 2 such shelves in the same manner, using the same dimensions.

Step 3 - Brackets and Anchors

Mark what height the shelf is supposed to be placed. On these marks, place the anchors. Drill holes using a power drill in the places where the ends of the anchor align with the wall. Insert drywall nails into these holes so that the brackets set firmly. It is not necessary to locate the wall studs. Make sure that the length of the shelf made does not cross a point that is more than 3-inches from either end of the anchors. Insert the shelf brackets by drilling at the positions of holes and screwing them in firmly. The bracket must be level with the anchors. Use a carpenter’s level to check this.

Step 4 - Placing Hinges

Take the board cut out for the shelf and place it on the floor. Take 2 hinges and position it at the two sides. Drill holes in the holed portions of the hinges and screw the hinges up to the shelf. Repeat this on the other side of the shelf as well. Take the other pieces cut out for the shelf and place it along the seams of the first shelf. Make sure that the part of the hinge that is free comes under the new shelves’ under side. Screw in the hinge as you did above. Now you have a long shelf that can be folded where the hinges are attached.

Step 5 - Final Steps

Now mount the shelf on the brackets and anchors set on the wall. Screw in the areas where the bracket holes align up with the surface of the shelf at the bottom. Make sure you drill holes there first and then place screws. See that the shelf is fit straight and then tighten the screws fully. The folding shelves are ready!