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Flexy Rack for Media Storage, not Components


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#1 of 7 RebeccaB

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Posted July 07 2005 - 02:27 AM

I have been searching for a good media storage solution. I currently have about 200 DVDs and many more VHS cassettes, and plan on collecting more DVDs in the future. I think building a Flexy Rack is the best solution so far.

My question is, do I need to use a 5/8" threaded rod if I'm only going to be putting DVDs and tapes on the shelves? It seems as though I won't be supporting as much weight and could get away with a smaller rod. Similarly, I don't care about "damping" the rack - I'm just storing things on it. As such, I don't think I'll be using neoprene washers.

I'd like to make this as tall as possible, as I have a small apartment. There are 72" rods at my local hardware store that I could use. I also think I'll make the shelves 6-8" deep (If I make it 6", I can buy one 12" pre-made shelf and cut it down the middle, saving a bit of money). The shelves are 48" long. Do you think I'll have stability problems at that height?

Does anyone have any opinions or advice on this? Many thanks!

#2 of 7 Jason Dalton

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Posted July 07 2005 - 02:42 AM

I'm going to be building something very similar in the near future. My plan is to simply use a single threaded rod (on each side) to tie the shelves together and then use some L-brackets to anchor it to the wall. That should give it plenty of stability.

#3 of 7 SteveCallas

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Posted July 07 2005 - 04:26 AM

Are you going to use anything on the back or just put it against a wall and use the wall to support to dvds from falling through?

I just made my second diy dvd rack out of white melamine board for the sides and two lengths of pvc pipe for each "shelf". The pipes are arranged so that the bottom and back of the dvds are supported - they kind of cradle the dvds. I wish I had a digital camera so I could show you, it came out really nice, much better than my first one a year ago, and was very cheap. It is 6' tall and holds about 300 dvds and 150 cds. If I made it just for dvds it would hold about 400.

#4 of 7 Jarett

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Posted July 07 2005 - 05:15 AM

hey,

That is an awesome idea, cna you maybe borrow a camera or something? I ade a flexy rack for my equipment, and i love it. For dvds i think 1/4" threaded rod would be ok, but maybe not if it is goin to be really tall...

#5 of 7 RebeccaB

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Posted July 07 2005 - 01:22 PM

Jason, I did consider attaching it to the wall in some way to increase stability. Depends on how many holes it would be, as I'm sure my landlord won't be pleased. I'll definitely keep it in mind.

Steve, I was going to use the wall to keep the DVDs from falling out, but I think the molding will prevent that. I was thinking about adding wire or a dowel or something.

I really like your idea of using PVC for shelves. Sounds much cheaper than all my other options so far! What diameter and length of piping did you use? I saw some copper PVC that could look cool if I paint the melamine black.

More importantly, how did you attach the PVC to the melamine? The guy at Home Depot suggested screwing caps to the wood, then glueing the PVC into the caps. I can't think of any other way (of course, I'm clearly not very experienced at any of this).

I'm guessing you put one pipe on the mid-bottom and one in the middle of the long side of the DVDs, so that the bottom corners of the DVDs hung in space. Do you have any issues with them falling through that way? I wish I could see a pic of yours, too!

And Jarett, I couldn't find any 5/8" x 72" threaded rods, but they do have some 1/2" x 72", which I might be able to make work.

Thanks so much for your input, everyone!

#6 of 7 SteveCallas

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Posted July 07 2005 - 02:44 PM

This is kind of hard to explain, but each "shelf" is made of two pieces of 3/4" pvc pipe. One piece will be about 1/3 of the way back into the depth of the melamine sides - this piece acts as the bottom of the shelf and supports the majority of the weight of the dvds. The second piece is about 2/3 of the way back into the depth of the melamine sides, and about 5 inches higher than the first. Basically, the second piece should be at a good 45 degree angle up and away from the first piece when viewed from the side. The second piece gives the dvds something to lay back on and only supports some of the weight.

It's similar to this design.

Posted Image

My rack is 73" tall and 25" wide. I have seven shelves, made from 14 23.5" long pieces of 3/4" pvc. The melamine is 3/4" and comes in 8' pieces, so I had them cut off a 25" piece off of each. One is used for the top and the other for the bottom.

One way to attach the pvc shelves to the melamine board is to get a wooden dowel rod that fits tightly into the pipe. Cut the rods into 3" pieces. Drill some pilot holes into the center of these dowel rods (this is the most work of the whole project), drill some pilot holes on the sides of the melamine board where the center of each pipe will be, and use some 2.5" coarse thread drywall screws to screw the pieces of dowel rod against the inside sides of the malmine board.

Once that's done, fit the pvc pieces over the dowel pieces, push the sides together, and screw the top and bottom on with L brackets in addition to a couple of screws on the top and on the bottom down into the sides. Always drill pilot holes first. Then just go over the spots where the pvc touches against the melamine with a touch of white caulk so you see no seems.

That's the method I used for my first rack a year ago and it works just fine. On this second one though, I wanted it to be even sturdier, so for the front pieces of pvc, I lucked out and found a small shoe rack that my parents were throwing out that had these 23.5" long, 1/2" wide metal cylinders with threads on the sides that you could screw into. It looked just like this.

Posted Image

I unscrewed them from the shoe rack, put them inside the pvc, and used a screw from each side of the melamine to hold it in very tight and very sturdy. For the back pieces, I used dowel rod pieces again. Since the front pieces support most of the weight, this worked out awesomely. This second rack is very solid, very clean, and looks store bought. Anywhere there are two pieces coming together to form a seem, I used white caulk and everything kind of looks like one big piece.

You don't need to buy a shoe rack though, the dowel pieces will support the weight fine. If you want to be extra sure, you can use 4" or 5" pieces of dowel for the front pipe. I'm pretty proud of it, it holds plenty of dvds, and the total cost was under $50. If you want to use one or two of the shelves for cds, just position the front and back pvc pieces with 3" of height between them.

I'll try to get pictures up if I can.

#7 of 7 Jason Dalton

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Posted July 08 2005 - 03:41 AM

Steve,

I really like your idea, seems very functional and economical. Now I'm starting to rethink doing a flexy for my media storage.