Media Storage

Published on March 6th, 2009 | by Jules Yap


A trim Lack stereo shelf

This is a nice hi-fi set up from Christopher. Reminds me of how Dad use to stack his amps. Cool. I like.

He says, “I just finished my own Ikea hack, and I wanted to share.

I’ve got 2 Expedit shelves to hold my records and smaller items, but I wanted a coordinating shelf to hold my stereo. As we all know, the Lack system goes very well with Expedit. Unfortunately, my stereo components are just over 16″ wide, and would look odd on the 37″ wide shelves that come standard on the Lack bookcase. So here’s my solution:

1. Buy a Lack bookcase. Using a slice of pizza, bribe your neighbor to help carry it inside. Unpack the box.

2. Measure and cut shelves to desired width. In this step, accuracy is of prime importance. If the shelves are not cut square or identical, your book case will not go together properly. I used a circular saw with a sharp blade. In this case, I cut the shelves exactly in half, but in theory, they could be whatever width you like.

3. Since the shelves are mostly air inside, there is nothing to screw into when you assemble the unit. So I used some blocks of maple cut to fit exactly inside the shelf. I mashed the cardboard in to make room for the wood blocks, and used Elmer’s Ultimate glue to firmly attach the blocks inside the shelves. This step is important, as well, since this is what holds the left side of the bookcase to the right side of the bookcase. Cutting corners on this step will cause catastrophic shelf failure, and could lead to property damage and/or serious personal injury.

4. After the glue has dried, the parts are ready to assemble. Use appropriate size drill bits and drill holes in the wood blocks that match the original holes in the particleboard. Assemble the bookcase as originally intended.

5. Load it up with your stuff, knowing that nobody will ever know that you hacked it.

6. As a bonus hack, I used a part of an old bed and 2 leftover plates from a universal LCD TV mounting kit to make a bar across the back of the turntable area to attach the lights, since the Lack shelf is too thick for the clamps that hold the lights on.

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The Author

Jules Yap

"I am Jules, the engine behind IKEAHackers and the one who keeps this site up and running. My mission is to capture all the wonderful, inspiring, clever hacks and ideas for our much loved IKEA items".

9 Responses to A trim Lack stereo shelf

  1. Anonymous says:

    Yippee! I want some Lack floating shelves for my kitchen, but not as deep as they are. Thank heavens for a nice clear set of pics and instructions for cutting them, because I’m many miles from a store where I could wander in and check. Now I just have to suss whether I can cut down the brackets as easily… Thanks for this, great work, great documentation.

  2. Christopher says:

    I couldn’t use Expedit, because the space inside is only 13.25 inches, and I needed 16+ inches.

    The cuts came out nice and clean. I measured where I needed the cut to be, and scored the foil with a knife, then cut just to the outside of the score.

    I used a standard all-purpose blade in a cheap circular saw.

  3. amir says:

    I’ve always been wary of hacking a LACK shelf, because while obviously a saw would cut the wood and cardboard nicely, I thought it would snag on the foil finish and make a ragged edge of it. Did the finish cut totally cleanly, or is there a little compromise there? What kind of saw blade did you use? Thanks.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Lack looks better, more substantial and less square and boxy than Expedit, IMO. If only Lack would expand its line and produce as many optional pieces as Expedit (sigh). Congratulations on having the guts to saw into a Lack shelf. It’s more than I have dared to do, but I might try it now that you’ve showed us how. Thanks from a big Lack fan.

  5. khurt says:

    I don’t understand why you couldn’t just use the EXPEDIT? It’s the of approximate depth and height of your hacked LACK.

  6. No overheating problems so far, as the back is all open. Most stereo cabinets I looked at had a masonite backing and a glass door on the front. This is much more open than those, so I think I’m OK.

    Also, pepperoni and sausage.

  7. Hey. Great Hack. I have something similar that I bought many years ago from IKEA’s AS-IS department. It had a huge ding in one side, but it housed my gear quite nicely. Here it is, recessed in my still unfinished wall.

    You think that they call it ‘LACK’ on account of the Lack of anything substantial between the boards?????

  8. FrightenedByPenguins says:

    What kind of pizza did you use? I tried this with a margarita but only got disgusted stares as my reward. :|

  9. Matthew says:

    looks great. but I worry about the air flow in there. any overheating problems?

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