Help with Kitchen Shelf

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Forum topic by Dupree posted 07-08-2012 01:46 AM 1109 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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20 posts in 3886 days

07-08-2012 01:46 AM

I want to build a kitchen shelving unit similar to this: (ignore the sliding cleat)

Looking to build it about 3 feet wide, 12” deep, and 10” tall. I would prefer to make it out of hard-wood (Maple to be specific). Cost wise, given the small amount of material, I don’t any reason not to. I intend on mounting some 1/4” ply for the back of the cabinet.

The backing will be rabbeted and recessed to accommodate a french cleat up top and a spacer along the bottom. The sides will sit flush with the cleats and (if my wall is flat) the wall.

Like the shelf in the image I intend to use simple butt-joints. Joining the pieces with pocket-screws/glue.

The bottom of the cleat will be mounted with 3/8” lag screws on 3 studs, 2 screws per stud.

The top cleat will be attached to the cabinet with pocket screws from the cleat into the top and sides along with glue.

I am considering extending the sides down an extra 2 inches to run a bar across the bottom to hang pots.

The top shelf will be for odds and ends, large bowls, mixer attachments etc. the lower shelf will be to get some things out of the pantry, such as flour, sugar, rice, mayhaps some high turn-over canned goods (she’s bound to put anything on it)

I would love your criticism of my plans/approach, suggested improvements, tips.

I have spent a lot of time on the net but very little in the shop….

2 replies so far

View Woodknack's profile


13585 posts in 3668 days

#1 posted 07-08-2012 04:02 AM

You may find this helpful:

I’ve only used pocket screws for DVD shelves which worked fine but I would be hesitant to rely on them for heavier loads. Although I did build a cabinet once with pocket screws but used construction adhesive on the butt joints. Later I tried to hammer the cabinet apart (after removing the screws) and was unable, I had to cut it apart.

Still I would not rely on pocket screws to hold that much weight, dados or cleats reinforced with glue under the shelves would be stronger.

-- Rick M,

View Dupree's profile


20 posts in 3886 days

#2 posted 07-09-2012 02:35 PM

To my understanding the pocket screws really only help provide clamping force while the glue dries. The strength of the joint comes from the glue. That being said I will probably go with dado joints.

That is a useful link indeed. Thanks.

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