I used a scrap piece of wood, leftover L-brackets from another project, some wall anchors I found lying around, and some scrap paracord. BOOM! A great shelf. It looks pretty cool too... like one of those medieval bridges or something.
How To Make It:
1) Screw 2 L-brackets to either side of the scrap piece of wood. When I did this, the screws were too long, so I used a Dremel to grind away the part that was sticking out.
2) Drill two holes just barely big enough for paracord to go through across from where the L-brackets are.
3) Secure the shelf to the wall with more screws.
4) Bring the paracord through the holes on either side and tie a knot (or two or three) in it so it won't come back through.
5) Screw the two wall anchors into the wall above the shelf (make sure they are in line with each other).
6) Bring the paracord up and around the wall anchors and then tie each of them to their wall anchor. This part can be sort of hard because the paracord needs to be really tight.
7) Use it!
Make to Learn Youth Contest
1) What did you make?
I made a shelf for my physical media storage. I have a very small desk and small bookshelf, and just didn't have anywhere to put my DVDs, CDs, sleeves, etc. that looked organized and neat. So, I made a shelf! I used some scrap wood I found in my garage, some leftover L-brackets, 550 paracord, screws, and some small wall anchors.
2) How did you make it?
I made it by first screwing the L-brackets onto the bottom of the wood. The screws were too long, but they were the only ones I had, so I used the Dremel to grind off the little remainder of the screw poking out of the top of the board. I then screwed the other side of the bracket to my wall. It wasn't very sturdy -- it felt like it would fall when I put my DVD stack on it. So, I had to change the plan. I thought about using some wall anchors I had seen in the garage and some paracord to make it into a "medieval bridge" style shelf. I made marks on the wall for the anchors and drilled small pilot holes. I then screwed in the anchors by hand as tight as I could get them. Next, I drilled some holes in the shelf corners for the paracord to go through. I put the paracord through and tied a knot on the bottom so it couldn't get through. I then tied the other ends to the anchors so the paracord was tight enough to keep the shelf sturdy. I made it all by myself.
3) Where did you make it?
I made it partly in the garage, partly in my room. It was a Saturday and I didn't have much going on, so it didn't interfere with other things in my life.
4) What did you learn?
I learned some simple physics -- a tiny L-bracket won't hold up an 8"-wide wooden shelf.