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How to Make a Shelf Using 2X2's

Making your own shelves for the kitchen, craft room or garage is a task that most handy do-it-yourselfers can accomplish. You don't need any special materials; in fact, you can make a sturdy shelf from 2-by-2-inch lumber and plywood. This is a great way to use leftover lumber after a larger building project, and you can vary the dimensions to suit the available space and storage requirements.

Make your own handy shelf from 2-by-2 lumber.
  1. Find three wall studs in the wall using a stud finder and mark a line across them at the height you want the shelf to go. Use a level when marking the line to ensure it is straight.

  2. Place a 48-inch-long plank of 2-by-2 lumber on the level line and use two 3-inch drywall screws to attach it to the wall at each stud point. There will be three stud points, as studs are spaced 16 inches apart, and six screws altogether. This is the wall cleat for the shelf.

  3. Position two planks of 6-inch-long 2-by-2 lumber at right angles to the shelf cleat, one at either end. Secure them with three drywall screws.

  4. Place a sheet of 10-by-48 inch plywood (3/4-inch thick) over the shelf cleat and use 1-inch wood screws driven through the back of the plywood into the cleat to secure it.

  5. Miter the ends of two pieces of 11-inch 2-by-2 lumber to opposing 45 degree angles. Slot them between the end of the 6-inch planks that are perpendicular to the cleat and the edge of the plywood shelf top. These are support brackets

  6. Secure them with finishing nails through the end into the 6-inch plank and through the top of the plywood into the end of the brackets.