How to Make a Bifold Bookcase
Remedy limited storage or wall space with sturdy and useful bi-fold bookcases that open to reveal a doorway or closet. Bi-fold bookcases are practical for smaller homes because they provide extra space for storage when they cover the doorway. A door for a room that is not often used, such as the attic, is more sensible as a useful bookcase than useless space. This type of door also is usable as a cover for an imperceptible business safe.
Lay two 7-foot-tall bookcases on the floor, backs facing up.
Clamp the two bookcases together with a 1/4-inch spacer between them. Place one spacer at the top with a clamp and another at the bottom with another clamp.
Set a stainless steel piano hinge on the area where the two bookcases meet. The hinge must lie on the cases so it freely folds up. The piano hinge is 72 inches long, a foot shorter than the length of the bookcases. To center the hinge, measure 6 inches down from the tops of the bookcases and position the top end of the hinge at that point.
Drill a screw into each of the first two holes and each of the last two holes in the hinge with a power drill. Attaching these screws first stabilizes the hinge while you drill in the rest of the screws. Check that you have a screw firmly in each hole before attempting to fold the bookcases.
Attach the threshold section of the bifold-door mount to the floor parallel with and 1 inch away from the wall or doorway the bi-fold bookcase will cover. The threshold is the bottom part of the sliding mechanism. Use the power drill to attach the threshold to the floor with 2-inch wood screws on each end.
Attach the top part of the sliding mechanism, or valence, to the wall or across the top of the doorway. This bracket holds the top of the bookcases in place. Secure the valence to the wall with 2-inch screws and the power drill.
Attach the pivot bars to the back corners of the bottom and the back corners of the top of the bookcases at the farthest ends with the 1/2-inch screws provided in the sliding-mechanism package. These pivot bars will sit inside the stationary and sliding devices in the mechanism.
Position the hinged bookcases on the mechanism by pushing on the release button provided in the mechanism. This button lowers the metal holding bars enough to slip them into their proper places.
Things You Will Need
- Two 7-foot-tall bookcases
- Two 1/4-inch spacer
- Two wood clamps
- 72-inch piano hinge
- Measuring tape
- Bi-fold door mechanism
- 2-inch wood screws
- Power drill
- A standard doorway opening is 80 inches high. The 7-foot bookcase will cover the doorway. For the best fit, measure the doorway or wall before choosing the bookcases or building bookcases.
- If a piano hinge is unavailable in your area, replace it with three large door hinges set equidistant apart along the seam between the bookcases and attached with 1/2-inch screws.
- Have a friend help you lift the bookcase door from the floor. It will be heavy.