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I want to put up a closet rod with shelf, my closet is 80" deep. The studs are 16" apart. Looks like this:

enter image description here

I'm not sure how wide the corner studs are, and it will be pretty awkward to try to screw them in there. So I was thinking of just attaching the supports to the inner studs. But since I have an even number of them, I feel I only have these choices:

  1. Put the supports on every stud (1, 2, 3, 4) - looks a little crammed.
  2. Put the supports on stud 1 & 4, and then put a support in-between 2&3 using a drywall anchor. I don't like the drywall anchors for this, but it would look balanced and not as crammed as option #1.
  3. Put supports only on stud 1 & 4 - not sure if that's going to be strong enough, the rod might sag in the middle.

Are all the options viable, and it comes down to the aesthetic I want?

These are the rod supports:

enter image description here

Thanks

  • Is this closet 80" deep or 80" wide? Will this rod be on the back wall or the side wall? Is this a walk-in closet? – Jim Stewart Feb 18 '17 at 13:00
  • It's a walk in - so it's 80" deep. I'll be replicating the same on both sides. – user3203425 Feb 18 '17 at 13:11
  • AFIK the standard methods of mounting rod hangers involve socket supports at the ends too, on the perpendicular walls. Oftentimes builders of value housing (like mine) skimp on the supports on the wall behind the rod and this makes for a sagging rod. Do you plan on building the shelf and the end sockets yourself or buying a system you install? You can buy inexpensive value systems that would work well if properly installed or you can go higher end with something like elfa. With elfa you fasten a track rod to the studs and hang the shelf and clothes rod from that. – Jim Stewart Feb 18 '17 at 13:21
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    Don't worry about how much of the end studs are exposed. You can angle screws into them. There would probably not be studs to attach end sockets to, but the drywall can support a lot of downward force with the correct anchors. If you would use the back braces you pictured every 16", you would have an extremely strong shelf and rod. – Jim Stewart Feb 18 '17 at 13:31
  • I did a 76" deep walk-in closet with elfa, both sides. I installed the tracks and my wife picked out all the shelving and located the rods. The advantage of this is that you can have a mixture of rod and shelving along the 80". If you have studs on 16" centers, you could attach the track at each stud and have a very strong system that could be re-arrangeable. It will cost a lot more than a minimum setup, but a lot less than the built-in closet systems. – Jim Stewart Feb 18 '17 at 13:44
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In my house the closets have 1x4 screwed on top of the sheetrock, on all 4 sides (minus the door opening of course) to mount the brackets. The shelf and rod bracket is exactly the one you have pictured. Where it is attached they added a short 1x4 vertically (with rounded bottom corners actually) to make a level mounting surface.

  • Tyson, does your installation have sockets in the end walls for the ends of the rod? If so, are they open at the top so the rod can be dropped in? Your set-up would allow support for a shelf. Is that how a shelf supported in your closet? – Jim Stewart Feb 18 '17 at 16:55
  • It does make a better shelf support than just the bracket alone. There are no end supports, wouldn't work completely since there are rods on 3 sides. Usually the end brackets are paired tho @JimStewart – Tyson Feb 18 '17 at 17:56
  • And those 1x4's make it so easy to add single hooks for flat-lying stuff behind the clothes on the rod. – James Olson Feb 20 '17 at 4:09
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The short answer is, yes, it basically comes down to aesthetic.

How do I reach this conclusion?

The key to your question involves both mechanics and building practice.

The corner studs probably are only half-exposed behind the drywall, as they are positioned to provide backing and a nailing/screwing surface for the drywall. Google "framing corners" for examples. So, it might be difficult to get fasteners well-affixed into the available width.

That leaves the studs you've labeled 1-4. The shelf and rod are each 5 ft long. Just guessing, I'd say 50 pounds per foot would be a maximum expected load, or 250 pounds total. Remember, this is maximum. Your brackets each take 2 screws. So, 2, 3, or 4 brackets used will transfer the load to 4, 6, or 8 screws. Also, the force at the bracket will include a torque created by the shelf's cantilever, so the force at the top screw will be a "pullout" while that at the bottom will be shear.

Googling around, it looks like a #8 galvanized wood screw might have shear strength of at least 40 pounds and pullout strength of at least 150; and, for a #10 galvanized wood screw, 50 and 200 pounds might be a reasonable estimate. This is entirely nonscientific and I am not an engineer, so this is all seat-of-the-pants, shade-tree mechanic type of stuff. May cause injury, etc.

Drywall anchors of both the toggle bolt and auger-anchor types might have a 40 pound strength, both shear and pullout, as it's typically the drywall that fails, though I've seen toggles fail at the hinge. I like the Hilti unhinged toggle with plastic, breakaway, through-wall member better than old-style hinged toggles.

Add it all up, your estimated total shear strength for #8s would be 200 pounds and for #10s, 280 pounds. Pullout estimated at 340 and 440 pounds, respectively.

Something to consider would be that the weight on the shelf and rod will be multiplied by the distance that the load is spaced from the wall. Having all the load at the front edge creates more pullout load than having it evenly distributed, which is more than if its concentrated at the wall. This can be calculated.

Bottom line, it comes down to a judgement call: how much weight do you expect to put on the shelf and rod?

Also, do you have children, and could they ever possibly try to hang from the rod or try to climb onto the shelf? If so, I'd use 4 brackets and #10 or 1/4 inch screws.

It's really a judgment call that only you can make. But this is one way to approach that decision.

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