Learn to install a glass shelf like a professional carpenter

I have been trying to see what I can put down here that can be of use and my recent conversation with a friend prompted this post. She was wanting to get shelves installed in her kitchen and had been coordinating with professionals to get it done. One of the many needs in any kitchen is the requirement for additional shelves at some point or the other. And it was mere coincidence that I was working on completing an earlier project of mine which involved installing a glass shelf to the cabinet. My camera is giving us big trouble, and I could only manage the below pictures. Hoping that they serve the purpose. So, here’s how you can install a glass shelf to a cabinet without professional help.

Materials and tools required:

  • The glass shelf. The process holds well even if you use a wooden shelf. The length of the shelf needs to be 1 or 2 mm lesser than the length of the cabinet. I got mine for Rs.90/-
  • Shelf brackets or bats (The ones you see in the picture are called shelf bats) - Rs 35/- a pair
  • Drilling machine (Do remember that this is a must have tool for even some of the small requirements at home)
  • Adhesive (if required)
Shelf brackets - Glass shelf support
Shelf Brackets
I went to my regular plywood store and gave the dimensions of the glass and got it cut from the store. Since my size was small, he could give it to me from a spare piece and that saved me some cost.
Shelf glass
Glass panel for the shelf

Step 1 : Mark the height and drill holes

Mark the height on both sides of the cabinet where you want to install the shelf. Ensure that the height is same on both the sides.

Drill two holes along the line marked. This by far may seen as the most cumbersome activity in the whole process. Get yourself a drilling machine and you would realize it is not a big deal after all.The hole size should not be bigger than the bat / bracket cylindrical protrusion (refer photo). The depth of the hole should be just enough for the entire bracket to be comfortably inserted into the hole. Drill a bit and insert the bracket to test. Keep drilling (with intermittent testing with the bracket) until you are able to comfortably place the shelf support into the drilled hole.
Drill holes
Drill holes for the bat insertion

Step 2 : Insert the shelf bats into the hole

Insert the shelf bats into the holes drilled and secure them in place. If the hole diameter is small, the bat cannot be inserted. If it is bigger, the bat will not be secure in its position. To avoid any loose insertion, I added loads of Fevicol and then inserted the bats in place.

Install shelf bats
Insert the shelf brackets

Step 3 : Place the shelf on the bats

The final step is to place the shelf on the bats. Notice that the bats have a cup shaped top ? With little pressure applied the glass shelf is held together by vaccum suction. Just same as any vaccum suction hooks that you would have seen.

How to install glass shelf
Learn to install a glass shelf
And it is as simple as that. With just a little bit of practice with an electric drill, you can pretty much take care of some of your woodworking needs all by yourself. Installing a glass shelf, getting a cabinet door installed, installing a glass door are among some of the requirements that you can fulfill with this skill. Comes in quite handy at the most vital situations. Share your thoughts. Let me know if you found this post useful.
- Somu

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