Print Friendly and PDF

Easy DIY Ledge Shelves to Display Art

Use hanger bolts to hang floating shelves on the wall without any visible brackets or screws.






As part of setting up a studio for my hubby, we decided to mount ledge shelves on the wall to keep all his completed artworks safe. This idea is also great for it you want to display art in your home and you have the option to add a piece of pine moulding at the edge of the ledge shelf to prevent your art from falling off. We will probably add this later on if required.









Now it is easy to make and hang your own design floating shelves using hanger bolts, also known as double-headed bolts. I purchased these from Chamberlains in Strubens Valley after scouring for months trying to find a supplier. It could be because they have a different name, but hanger bolts seem to be the general term for these. Builders offer something similar, and they call it a bathroom fixation bolt at a price of around R30 per 2 bolts.





When using hanger bolts, you will also need to use nylon wall plugs in the same diameter size as the bolts. Other than that, you will need an 8mm drill bit and a few tools to get started.






21 x 94 x 1.8 metre PAR pine or own choice of width up to 120mm

Hanger bolts or double-headed bolts

Nylon wall plugs








Drill plus 8mm masonry bit

Steel ruler or straightedge

Hammer and rubber mallet

Spirit level, preferably magnetised (or use Prestik)

Digital detector






Step 1

Use a masonry bit that matches the size of the hanger bolts and nylon wall plugs.





Step 2

Decide where you want to mount the shelves on a wall and then use a steel ruler and spirit level to measure and mark where each shelf will be placed and make a mark where to drill for the wall plugs. Note that we used 3 hanger bolts for a 1.8 metre length of 22 x 94mm PAR pine. If you are mounting a ledge shelf longer than this, you will need an additional hanger.



GOOD TO KNOW: If you do not have a magnetic spirit level, apply a piece of Prestik on the back of the spirit level and stick it onto the front of your steel ruler or straightedge.





Step 3

Transfer the measurements marked on the wall where you will drill for the wall plugs onto the PAR pine that will serve as the ledge shelves. As mentioned above, you will need 3 hanger bolts per 1.8 metre shelf which means 3 holes to be drilled into the wall and 3 holes to be drilled into the PAR pine for the shelf.





Step 4

Cut down the hassle by stacking all your shelves on top of each other and drilling the holes at the same time. DO clamp all the PAR pine pieces together to prevent movement while you drill.





Step 5

DO NOT do any drilling into the wall before checking with a digital detector. Even if there are no power outlets on light switches on the front or back of a wall does not mean that they might not be electrical conduits or plumbing lines inside the wall. It is always better to check before you drill if you want to prevent expensive accidents.





Most digital detectors work with a sensor that lights up to display GREEN for safe, AMBER for caution, or RED for danger.





Step 6

Now you can drill the [3] 8mm holes in the wall for the nylon wall plugs and then insert the wall plugs into the drilled holes so that they are flush with the surface of the wall. If they stick out, they will prevent the PAR pine from sitting flush against the wall. Now you can insert the hanger bolts and tap them firmly into position with a hammer.





Step 7

For this step, the images below detail how you need to align the hanger bolts with the holes drilled in each shelf. An extra person will come in handy, but it is not essential. 





Once the holes and bolts are matched up, use your hand to initially tap the shelf onto the hangers and then switch to using a rubber mallet.













Continue to tap the shelf until it is firmly flush against the wall. This is why it is important that the PAR pine planks that you purchase be perfectly straight and level.





As you can see below, the shelf sits flush against the wall.





And there you have it. An easy way the hang floating shelves using inexpensive hanger bolts or double-headed bolts and nothing else!








back to top