// 3D PUZZLE FURNITURE // Japanese Bondage Shelf

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Introduction: // 3D PUZZLE FURNITURE // Japanese Bondage Shelf

About: My name is Anna-Liisa, I am a DIY woodworker and spoon carver from Berlin. I design solid wood puzzle furniture and I also run workshops for Wood Sisters in Berlin. Why sisters? Because my own non-scientific s…

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

We show you how to make your own furniture with only basic tools and skills by using square and diagonal lashing knots.

You don't need special tools to make this storage shelf. The shelf is assembled using square and diagonal lashing knots and the only tools you need are a sander, a saw and painting equipment.

YOU WILL NEED:

1200 x 255 mm laminated pine for the shelves

Dowels of 20 to 25mm diameter

Nylon rope, min 6mm diameter

TOOLS:

Orbital sander https://amzn.to/2q1WiMT plus assorted sanding pads Sander plus 120- and 180-grit sanding pads,

https://amzn.to/2qOPPWe

Step 1: Cutting the Legs

Cut the dowels into the required lengths. You will need [8] of 400mm - shelf supports, [4] of 1600mm - sides, and [2] of 1960mm - back. You can cut the lengths to size with a handsaw, or use a jigsaw or mitre saw if you have.
Sand all the cut pieces in advance so they are nice and smooth.

Step 2: Making the Shelves

You also need to cut - or have cut to length - [4] laminated pine shelves 250mm wide x 1200mm in length. Sand smooth once cut.

Step 3: Painting the Shelves.

If you are painting the shelves, wipe to remove any dust and then apply your choice of paint. If applying a sealer or varnish it's also a good idea to do this before you assemble the shelf unit.

Step 4: Preparing the Rope

Use a lighter or blowtorch to lightly singe the ends of the nylon rope to prevent it from unraveling.

Step 5:

To make the one side of the shelf, join the [2] longer dowels together place a smaller dowel (shelf support) between the two longer dowels and secure using a square lashing knot.

Continue adding the dowel shelf supports every 400 mm and then repeat this for the remaining side section.

GOOD TO KNOW: The first (top) smaller dowel shelf support is secured at 200 mm down from the top of the longer side dowels.

Step 6: Stabilizing the Shelf

Now connect the two sides of your shelf with two crossed sticks using Japanese diagonal lashing knot. Hint: you might want to ask somebody to hold the sticks while you are tying the knots.

Once the main frame is assembled, join the two sides of your shelf together using diagonal dowels (at the back) secured with diagonal lashing knots.

Step 7:

Use a handsaw (or jigsaw or mitre saw) to cut the back dowels at a diagonal at the ends.

Step 8: All the Shelves Into Their Places.

Place the shelves on their places.

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17 Comments

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vildand1
vildand1

6 months ago

I love it but i made it my own way for my plants. I chose to use square dowels for sides because of dowels was a bit expensive. I use two shelves so it reduced in size. I changed a little but i love mine too:)

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tomatoskins
tomatoskins

2 years ago

Beautiful shelf! How strong do you think it is?

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Wood Sisters
Wood Sisters

Reply 2 years ago

Hey! We are using it right now for the shues. But have used also for stronger stuff, like books etz.

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SteelLegJ
SteelLegJ

2 years ago

That's awesome

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jessyratfink
jessyratfink

2 years ago

I absolutely love the way this looks! I might have to make one of these with white cord as a plant shelf. :D

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Wood Sisters
Wood Sisters

Reply 2 years ago

Yes, please, we would be honored if you make one! Would love to see the outcome. Thank you for the kind words.

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38ren
38ren

2 years ago

Gorgeous shelf, I love the bright red :)

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Wood Sisters
Wood Sisters

Reply 2 years ago

Thank you :) This is our favorite color.

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Wood Sisters
Wood Sisters

Reply 2 years ago

Thank you :)

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JimH29
JimH29

Question 2 years ago on Step 8

That's a very nice looking shelf unit. Did you use any particular kind of knot when tying the cord around the joints?

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Wood Sisters
Wood Sisters

Answer 2 years ago

I learned to tie this knot here:

He suggests to use natural fiber rope.

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Kiteman
Kiteman

Answer 2 years ago

Steps 5 & 6 explain the knots you need.

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JimH29
JimH29

Answer 2 years ago

Thanks. I had rushed through the article and didn't catch it.

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johnwalton99
johnwalton99

Question 2 years ago

I see u have 25k bag sitting on bottom shelf, what is max load before failure (at lashings?), what can be done to raise the max load limit?

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Wood Sisters
Wood Sisters

Answer 2 years ago

Thank you, this is very good question. We tested it with 25 kg bag, because we assume that this would be the max weight to put on this kind of shelf. I believe it might be reasonable to tighten the ties sometimes. I have to admit I don`t know how to calculate it but it would be very interesting to find it out.

0
MikB
MikB

Question 2 years ago

Step 2 - the materials size is shown as (490`` x 98``) -- is that really 4 pieces of 40 feet by 8 feet of wood? I'd need to build some shelves first to store that on. And an extension to put it in :)

0
Wood Sisters
Wood Sisters

Answer 2 years ago

Thanks you very much! I will correct the errors.

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