Oh, just tell me.

CEFreemanJanuary 3, 2012

I've seen all the calculators and articles about shelf stress and sagging-ness and it just doesn't seem to compute in my head.

I have several 30" oak wall cabinets. The carcasses are oak plywood. They have center mullions, which I want to remove.

What type of wood (or material) should I use for shelves that won't sag? How thick?

That's all I want to figure out.

I'm am afraid I'm over-thinking it, but I learn by trial and error, heavy on the error part. These shelves will be a lot of material and I just don't want to screw it up.

What would you recommend?



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Make back rests(cleats) on the rear insides of the cases.

Add front supports under the front edges of each shelf.

That will allow the use of almost any 3/4" stock for the shelves and minimize any sag.

    Bookmark   January 3, 2012 at 4:30PM
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Hard maple 3/4" thickness is very firm.
Poplar 3/4" thickness Is slightly springier, but still acceptable.
Yellow pine 3/4" thickness is as firm as maple.
White pine (ponderosa from HD)is the springiest, but still within the acceptable range, just a bit weaker than poplar.
I used a 28" span, 30lb load (default) and 3/4" thickness at the Sagulator site.
A 28" span is not very much, and almost any common wood will be fine unless you're shelving hardcover books or bullion ingots.

Here is a link that might be useful: sagulator

    Bookmark   January 3, 2012 at 7:09PM
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Thank you, everyone.
That's the information I was hoping to get in just plain English.
Sombreuil_mongrel, that was my last calculator which made me a little crazy.

I can do exactly as advised and have yet another wall of cabinets together. Just gotta worry about doors!

Thank you all for your clear help!

    Bookmark   January 3, 2012 at 9:39PM
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Casey, I just reread your last line.

[whisper] Who told you about my ingots?


    Bookmark   January 3, 2012 at 9:40PM
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