Ekby Bjarnum

Published on December 7th, 2010 | by Jules Yap


Suspension Bridge Shelf

Materials: MARKOR series home entertainment combo plus EKBY BJÄRNUM wall shelf bracket; Extra shelves from the “as is” section; castors on the coffee table so the footstool can live underneath

Description: Mounting the bridge shelf to the wall above the TV was proving more difficult than we thought… We came up with an elegant solution without having to drill holes in the wall! Using the EKBY wall shelf brackets mounted to the sides of the MARKOR bookcases as the “towers” the bridge shelf just sits on top. Simple!

We also added extra shelves to the bookcases from the “As Is” section to hold more DVD’s and castors to the MARKOR Coffee Table so the KARLANDA footstool can live underneath.

~ Michael and Tim Granados, Edinburgh, Scotland

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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".

5 Responses to Suspension Bridge Shelf

  1. S says:

    That is more of a cantilever than a suspension.

  2. Christopher says:

    Ikea is no longer selling MARKOR any longer, does anyone know where I can purchase these type bookcases now? cpallinforlife @ gmail

  3. Anonymous says:

    Let me start by saying that this is an interesting and good hack! That said, there are some structural issues that should be addressed.

    Do those screws go all the way through (i.e. bolts) or are they just regular screws? If they are just regular screws then I would be concerned (especially if it is screwed into anything other than solid wood – but even then).

    Two things are problematic:

    1st: The bottom screw is supporting nearly all the sheer weight (which is fine by itself because that is what screws are designed to do). But this becomes a pivot point around which the upper screw now is experiencing lateral forces (i.e. wants to pull straight out) which screws are NOT designed to do. The threads are not supposed to support weight, they are supposed to keep the screw in place so that the body of the screw can support sheer weights. Once the upper screw comes out, the bottom screw will suddenly and violently switch to suffering lateral forces and want to pull out as well.

    2) Screws stay in their substrate because of the combined force of the fibers of the material pressing against the spiral cutting surface. If you have 100 surfaces then the lateral forces are (simplistically speaking) applied across all 100. However, the surface area of each cutting surface is very small compared to the size of an individual wood fiber. If just a few fibers fail, an entire spiral can stop supporting any weight. But since the weight has not changed, the remaining spirals have to now support even more weight. This can easily cause some more fibers to get crushed (or severed) and now those spirals are no longer supporting any weight, etc. As each successive spiral fails,, the load is transferred to the next surface in a cascading failure where one second the entire structure feels solid and the next it fails completely – all without warning. That is to say, even though it feels perfectly strong when you tug on it (or it sits for a year without budging), the tiniest failure of just a few fibers can cascade such that the whole thing falls.

    If you use through bolts, a lot of these issues would be resolved. 1st, bolts (along with decent sized washers) are designed for lateral loads (pulling). 2nd, since a bolt and washer push on all of the fibers at the same time, the failure of a few fibers does not lead to a cascading failure (since the fibers are all tangled in the wood/particle board). 3rd, since washers have a much greater area, you are dispersing the forces across a larger surface, and each individual fiber has less work to do.

    I think if you switch to using bolts, you will have a solid hack on your hands! Good luck!

  4. David says:

    Why avoid drilling the wall ? If you want to take it down you just fill the holes with plaster now you have holes in your furniture!

  5. I think it looks a bit risky with all that load and the tv underneath to be crushed with photos of loved ones. The screws seems to be pretty small, I would probably not hesitate to do something similar myself but at the same time I’m not sure if I would dare to recommend it to others.

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