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It's true – simple one-piece, 90-degree-bend shelf brackets are visually unobtrusive. For greatest strength, however, choose brackets with an additional diagonal support. In either case, it's best to attach the bracket's longer arm to the wall and use the shorter arm to support the shelf. For long shelves, attach a bracket at least every 48 inches. For heavy loads, increase the size of your brackets and decrease the spacing between them.
You can complete this project in an hour or two - tops!
Attach the brackets to wall studs whenever possible. Save time by using an electronic stud finder to locate the studs. For extremely heavy loads, attach a bracket to every stud along the entire span of shelving.
To attach shelf brackets to masonry walls, use plastic concrete anchors and screws. Attach one shelf bracket every 24 inches - every 16 inches for heavy loads.
Level the shelf brackets with a carpenter's level. If necessary, hold the level on a straight 2x4 for shelf spans that are longer than the 3- or 4-foot length of the level.
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