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Posted by chris_harper2 on May 01, 2003 at 18:15:24:
In Reply to: Plywood v. melamine rack posted by Jeannie on May 01, 2003 at 17:36:09:
::If I use plywood and have shelves 34" wide, will I have a problem with sagging?
I'll post a picture of a rack I built. The boxes are about 33" x 16" x 13". I had to put this rack together quickly to quarantine a group of imported ratsnakes.
The design was supposed to be temporary, but has held up very well for the 6 months I've been using it.
There are five plywood shelves, and one melamine shelf (ran out of plywood and had scrap melamine). The plywood and melamine shelves have stayed remarkably straight. They are birch laminated plywood which is know for its straightness.
The vertical supports were ripped from leftover plywood. There is also a vertical support in the back that is 1x4 pine.
As you can see the supports are distributed evenly along the sides. So I'm not sure how well yours will hold up given the entire front will be unsuported.
But if you support yours in the back and use birch plywood, I think there is a reasonable chance the shelves will stay straight.
If you use large water bowls, obviously put them towards the sides rather than in the middle of the rack.
::How hard is melamine to work with, for a novice carpenter?
Not that bad, really.
::Will I have a harder time if I use melamine for the shelves and plywood for the sides?
No. I build a smaller rack that I used plywood sides for. I'll post some pictures of that next.