We made this shelf to encounter the problem of placing laptop and food on the study shelfs which we had in our dorm rooms. We found out that when we place our laptops on the tables which we are assigned to study on, half the breadth is covered by the laptop. This renders the space along the breadth almost useless. We also figured that students while studying almost always need food and beverages, to accommodate that we introduced platforms along the sides which allows extra room for purposes like such.

Step 1: Marking and Cutting of Plywood Planks

First of all the markings were made on the plywood. We chose a 10mm ply because it had the structural strength to carry required books and laptop and at the same time is light enough to hang on a wall via nails. Then we cut the plywood in the required dimensions of

1200 x 320 sq mm

1200 x 100 sq mm

650 x 320 sq mm

650 x 200 sq mm

250 x 320 sq mm

180 x 320 sq mm

Later in the project, an extra ply pieces was also cut to conceal the drawer slides which were longer than required.

These were later used in a functional utility.

Step 2: Making Sub-assemblies

After the basic cutting down was done, we started off by giving basic shape to the shelf.

This meant that we gave the bigger part the rectangular structure which we observe at the end and join together the two smaller pieces of plywood to make the 2 small Ls which slide down as food and beverage carriers.

Then we join the bigger plies to make the bigger L shaped structure which would slide down even further and carry the laptop.

Then on all these Ls, we attach the drawer slides. These drawer slides are the mechanism which ensure the smooth up and down movement of these Ls along the sides of the shelf. The bigger L is connected with 2 16" slides whose extension is restricted (these are telescopic slides which have 3 extensions, on of these is restrained from opening). These are attached on either sides at a distance of 200mm from the center.

The smaller Ls are connected with smaller 12" slides whose extension is again restricted. these are connected at a distance of approx 106 mm from the sides.

Step 3: Assembling the Sub-assemblies

After this, we started of by connecting these separate sub-assemblies together and bolting them on the bigger cuboid. This is when the shelf starts to get shape. We accomplished this via means drilling and screwing the drawer slides on the plywood of the cuboid.

To hang the shelf, we attached 2 square pieces of softwood of dimension 100x100x40 mm^3. To these pieces we attached metal pieces with shape of nail/screw carved on them to make hanging the shelf possible.

To prevent the turning of the shelf about these point/axis and therefore hinder the movement of the bigger L shaped structure, we attached a roller make of a PVC pipe and an aluminium pipe as its axis, on the bigger L. This would ensure the proper rolling and sliding movement of the bigger L.

Step 4: Load Testing and Finishing Up

After assembling all the sub-assemblies, we worked on giving the shelf a finish.

This including:

  • Sticking sawdust at pores and covering them
  • Grinding and filing all the rough edges
  • Oiling the roller and the slides
  • Attaching biddings at the frontal and visible ends of the shelf

To stop the drawer slides to open on themselves we added door magnets at the back of the Ls, this ensured that they don't fall open on themselves.

Also to pieces of a large PVC pipe were attached at the top of the concealing ply, the pieces can act as cylindrical sheet box carriers.

After we got done with that, we hanged the shelf on the wall to load test the shelf. The shelf was sturdy and strong enough to handle the loading criterion.

Step 5: Painting and Final Touch-ups

Once the shelf was load tested, we proceeded with colouring the shelf.

To start off, we first gave the shelf 2 coats of white primer. After the primer dried off, we spray painted the Shelf with white colour and the biddings with brown.

Step 6: Using the Smart Shelf!!

Now the shelf is all ready to use, and is fully functional.

<p>Looks good :)</p>

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