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Thread: Glass shelves in cabinet

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
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    Upper Dublin, Pa.
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    Question Glass shelves in cabinet

    I've designed a cabinet with glass shelves that are approximately 31 by 14 inches. It will be used to display dishes and glasses. Does anybody know how thick this glass should be? I was thinking either 1/4 or 3/8. Also I'm thinking of using standard 1/4 inch pin shelf supports. Are they sufficient or is there a product made especially for glass shelves?

    Your help is appreciated,
    Dave

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Poland
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    Hi Dave

    I made this glass cabinet with glass shelves.
    It's 39˝ x 19˝ glass shelves. I used 1/4" thick glass.

    As for the shelf pins, I used special ones that have a soft plastic "cup" like and when you put the glass on them, they create a vacuum and hold the glass so it can not move. Sorry, I don't know where to find them in USA....

    Of course the shelves are now much more loaded with my wife's "collections" but no problems.

    Regards
    niki


  3. #3
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    Thanks,

    Nissim,
    BTW, nice looking cabinet.
    Dave

  4. #4
    If you can get a copy of Wood Magazine, Apr 2002 Page 24, there is an article on Buying glass and glass shelving. They give good info on glass edges, and there was an article on load ranges and calculating the weight loading for different thickness of glass, over a specific distance. I searched the article index, but couldn't find it. If you are a subscriber, you might be able to find the issue. I started subscribing in 2002, and the article was published after that. Sorry I couldn't be more help.
    Brian

    Sawdust Formation Engineer
    in charge of Blade Dulling

  5. #5
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    Brian,
    That's a great tip. - Just what I'm looking for.
    Thanks,
    Dave

  6. #6
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    update

    I was able to purchase the wood mag issue on their website.

    Thanks again,
    Dave

  7. #7
    Dave, you might also contact a glass company or two in your area. They shouold be able to tell you load bearing info. Many companies also either carry or can steer you to hardware for glas projects. Good luck with your project!

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    SE PA - Central Bucks County
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    Dave, thanks for bringing this up...I may do glass shelves in the uppers for our new wet bar in the addition. I'll have to "consult" with you about that in about a month...
    “Never raise your hands to your children, it leaves your groin unprotected.” - Red Buttons

    If you want your spouse to listen and pay strict attention to every word you say -- talk in your sleep...

    Be safety conscious. 80% of people are caused by accidents.

    Equestrian Sports. The most fun you can have with your boots still on...


  9. #9
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    Mt. Pleasant, MI
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    How much load? Center loaded or uniform?

    This is the only place I go when designing shelves.

    http://www.woodbin.com/calcs/sagulator.htm

    A 50 pound (uniform) load on your size with .25 glass shows a .10 deflection (.09 would be noticeable) Bump to 5/16 and it is .05, 3/8 is only .03.

    Personally with that span I would go with 5/16 at a minimum unless there was some kind of center support available.

    Joe

    ETA: uniform loading
    For best results, try not to do anything stupid.

    Si vis pacem, para bellum - Vegetius De Rei Militari III (paraphrased)

    "So this is how liberty dies...with thunderous applause." - Padmé Amidala "Star Wars III: The Revenge of the Sith"

  10. Joe: Thanks for posting the link to the sagulator--I hadn't seen that!

    Here is a table of recommended thicknesses from glass fabricators (I own a glass shop). It assumes that the glass is only supported along the two sides.

    ·Permissible Load (pounds per square foot) for Glass Shelves

    The following values apply for annealed glass and are based upon two-side support. The maximum loads shown are calculated less the dead weight of the glass itself. When loaded to the maximum permissible load for long durations (e.g., weeks or months), the probability of breakage is only 3 in 1,000 (0.3%).

    Note: Tempered glass is not necessarily recommended for shelves because of the slight possibility of spontaneous breakages from small inclusions or from blows to the edges. If the probability of glass shelf breakage must be kept to the absolute minimum possible, then laminated glass shelves can be considered where either ply alone of the laminate is capable of supporting the design load.
    Attached Files Attached Files

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    North Carolina
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    It may be more economical to go with a thinner glass and set it in a wood frame. I like the looks of the wood frame and you can use standard shelf pins.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  12. #12
    "all men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night....wake in the day to find that it was vanity; but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dream with open eyes, to make it possible."
    T.E. Lawrence

  13. #13
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    Thanks, Per...those look like just the ticket. John Young, I like that idea, too.
    “Never raise your hands to your children, it leaves your groin unprotected.” - Red Buttons

    If you want your spouse to listen and pay strict attention to every word you say -- talk in your sleep...

    Be safety conscious. 80% of people are caused by accidents.

    Equestrian Sports. The most fun you can have with your boots still on...


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