Storage issues

It’s been five months since we moved into our new house and my CD and DVD collection is still in boxes and Rubbermaid containers. I have access to my full collection but they just aren’t displayed properly.

At our old apartment, the CDs were stored in these really nice unfinished wood cases by Bostonwood in Boston, MA. I have two that hold 750 CDs and one that holds 900 and they are still sitting in the basement. The wife and I took over the second floor double bedroom but the ceilings are too low and they slope on the sides. The previous owners re-did this part of the house (formerly the attic) for their two boys but they took no consideration for large media collections, LOL! The bottom line is that the cases just don’t fit against any wall due to the slopes.

So I’ve been searching…..and searching…..and searching for a solution. Money isn’t tight but it needs to be used wisely so the ultra-expensive cabinets aren’t part of the solution. Nice dream though! One idea my wife had was to cut the tops off the cases I have. The highest I can go on any wall with the slope is 38″ so I would need to take off three shelves off the 750s and five off the 900. I have a problem with that because I spent about $400 total for all three cases over the years, I’d hate to see them ruined. It’s the most practical and economic solution but I’m resistant. I’m also not a handy kind of guy so doing it on my own requires a ton of work and learning on the fly. I’m more inclined to pay someone to do it but that money could be spent on a new shelving system and I could sell the ones I have.

Aside from the normal Google search of “media shelving” and “CD storage”, my main resource has been Living With Music. My friend Volkher Hofmann has a very useful section on Storage & Display that has many unique ideas. Two features I’ve been researching today are the Ikea Ivar shelving and Boltz. Boltz CD Racks are very nice but still pricey. I’m also not sure if they are sturdy with all of that weight on those pointy slim “feet”, I’m nervous about them with two small kids and a dog. The IVAR system looks like the way to go, especially when you see Volkher’s pictures of his system. This is exactly what I need.

If I’m right, I will need six shelves and two side units to make one set 29″H, 33″W, 12″D. Total cost will be around $52 per unit. Capacity would be 400 CDs per unit.

Cross your fingers…..all I need is the wife’s OK!

9 comments on “Storage issues

  1. I hope you can work something out Steve. I am lucky because i have one room for my cd´s and vinyls and i realy have many. Without that room i would be lost. I also have my computer in the same room and i call it my hobby room. Only heavy rock and metal is welcome of course and my girlfriend lol.
    Take careeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee steve.

  2. Good luck…if it makes you feel better, my wife and I had to get creative to make the wall shelving that holds my CDs and it’s extended to another shelf now…2600 plus and counting, bro….this, of course, is why I’m doing my CD Shelf Cleanup project at my blog…my best to ya!

  3. Hi Steve,

    just saw this post now. The IVAR solution might not be the prettiest (although it is made from untreated wood and you could paint it … black … ;) …. or whatever), but it is rock-solid (see point b below though). If you haven’t gone for the solution yet, here are some points to consider.

    a) If you build a single unit, you have to also get yourself one metal stabilizer that is nailed to the back of the shelf. If you set up more than two heavy units next to each other, every second unit (that’s what I do) should have one of those stabilizers. That makes it more than rock-solid. BTW: Once the stabilizers are in place, those shelves that the stabilizer is behind cannot hold LP-sized boxes anymore (they’ll stick out a bit up front because on a 30cm deep shelf, the stabilizier will prevent it from being pushed backwards).

    b) Of course, a 30cm-deep shelf is too deep for CDs. I’ve nailed some longer wood pieces behind to prevent CDs from sliding backwards. (I’ll upload some new picks to Flickr about 30 minutes after I posted this. Look at the last image(s) in the “stereo setup and collection” group.

    c) If you have lots of digipacks, the CDs (if one row isn’t completely filled up, which you don’t want to do if you keep buying as I do) will tip over. Find yourself some heavy decorative items (that’s what I do) to keep everything upright and snug.

    d) Remember: Ivar can be extended in many ways. I have low units, I used to have tall units … everything can be changed at a very small expense. Just buy two taller side pieces, stick your old shelves in and off you go.

    e) Untreated wood needs quite a bit of time to get patina. If you add new shelves several years down the line (this system has been around forever), it’ll look a bit funny for quite some time (lighter new elements, darker old ones). I used to smoke a lot which really sped up the process. ;)

    That’s it for now. Off to make some more photos for you. I’ll post a “they’re up” when I’m done.



  4. OK. They’re up. The new images are in the group mentioned above, 9th photo onwards (I moved them to the top to keep them with the original IVAR images:


  5. Rene – When we bought the house in late September, we decided the upstairs would be the adult area. It’s actually two rooms: one is our bedroom that is set back and the second is our Media room. The Media room has the computer, stereo, and my collection. Once we find a suitable storage solution, we will move the wife’s book collection and DVDs upstairs. Of course, both rooms have the slant to the ceiling. It’s a problem we knew about but makes for interesting possibilities.

    Ray – My wife wants to do something similar with long shelves along the wall but I don’t want to use up the wall space and not be able to do other things. If we had a normal ceiling, that’s the way we’d go. I’d love to see a picture of that, I always like seeing other people’s collections, setups, etc.

  6. Volkher – Thank you for the extra pictures, my wife and I are going to use them as a guideline. We are going to order one unit to try. If I don’t like it, she will use it for her collections. The problem is that the smaller Ivar side units are unavailable to order online thru IKEA USA and the closest store doesn’t have them in stock.

    However, I can order the larger 49 inch high side unit and I can get away with that on a wall that separates the two upstairs rooms. I am going to probably order in the next week or two and try it out.

    Thanks for all your help.

  7. Pingback: Update.....or where the hell I've been. « Heavy Metal Addiction

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