Copper | Shelves | Wood

I wanted to make some shelves for a while (mostly out of necessity), so recently got around to designing and making a matching pair of them out of copper and wood.

Design choices were dictated by the available wall space and materials I had to hand. With an old door sitting, unused, in our basement, I had the planks required to make at least couple of shelves. I wanted the supporting structure of copper pipe to be more than just structural - it was important to me that it looked right. I like the symmetry of the three pillars; to me they evoke the feeling of a suspension bridge with a central tower, and two smaller siblings by it's side.

The door took a bit of elbow-grease to clean up, but I was happily surprised by the quality of the underlying wood after the years of paint, dirt, and dust were taken care of. After that, it was ready to be treated with oil for some protection and colour, and wax for a nice finish.

Next up, I had to learn to solder all the pipe. The support structure is made from lengths of standard 15mm (outer diameter) copper pipe, and the joints are off-the-shelf end-feed parts (90° and 45° elbows, and T-junctions), so there was no need bend anything this time, just lots of joints to solder. Possibly not the simplest of projects to start with, but I found it a bit easier than brazing, and with the lower temperatures involved, it's certainly quicker.

Further pictures of the process and the finished items can be found in the project gallery.