Books often refuse to stand on a book shelf where you put them. Thin books can be especially recalcitrant, but all books have a tendency to lie down; as soon as you have them perfectly arranged in readiness to impress someone with your literacy they can flop down like poorly arranged dominoes making them as impressive as a Readers' Digest collection.
Thankfully there is a simple stone-age solution to this massive modern first world problem. Bookends.
Bookends are generally heavy objects that prevent books from falling over. The best bookends are not only heavy, but attractive and stylish too. It's important that bookends fit nicely with the décor without taking away any of the glory of the books they support.
In this Instructable I will show you how you can make a very stylish pair of bookends that will impress your friends and prevent almost any book from falling over.
Step 1: What You Will Need.
- One perfect rock - more about this in the next step.
- Some felt
- A bucket of water
- A marker pen
- A diamond saw. I use a diamond disc on my angle grinder and cut-off saw. A brick saw would be better.
- Safety gear. Especially eyes, ears, and lungs protection.
Step 2: Find the Perfect Rock
I like to use the naturally beautiful shapes that rocks tend to automatically become when they have been weathered by the weather.
The best places to look are in river rapids and by the sea. The action of water knocks the corners off rocks until there are no more corners left to be knocked off and the remaining rock is quite round.
The rock use in this Instructable was found very close to the kangaroo in the picture.
Step 3: Mark and Cut Your Rock
The idea is to simply cut a flat base so the rock can easily stand, and then cut the rock in half. The two halves are your bookends.
To mark the first cut, first visualise how the finished product will look. When you know where your most want your base to be carefully lower the rock into water so the surface of the water is just where you want your cut to be. Carefully remove the rock from the water and use a pen to mark the edge of the wet part. When you cut along this mark you will get a nice flat base.
Cut the base using the diamond saw, and grind any uneven bits so the rock sits nicely.
Now visualise again how you want the finished product to look and decide where you want the next cut. You will be simply cutting it in half to make your two bookends. Make a mark and the use your diamond saw again to make the cut.
Grind any uneven bits.
You should now have a nice pair of bookends ready for finishing.
Step 4: Finishing
Depending on the rock, you may wish to apply some coating. This beautiful piece of granite just needed a wash to get the dust off. On some basalt ones I did in the past I used a clear coat to make the look like they were wet. On one set I added a steel upright. Your choices are only limited by your imagination.
One important point to note is that rock is much harder than most bookshelves. We must take steps to prevent the shelf being scratched by the rock. A bit of felt stuck to the base of the bookends does the trick.
Step 5: Concluision
I hope you have enjoyed my simple Instructable, and maybe even used it to solve your falling book problems. If you have, please consider voting for it in the contests.
I also have a website that shows a lot of my my work. Just click here de Burgh Steel.
If you have any questions or comments please feel free to post them in the comments.