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first post, I need some help. I am attempting to hang a 12u network cabinet in my laundry room. The problem is I only have one stud to use, maybe an additional corner stud, but the other stud is already taken up with some cabinets. I am trying to figure out best how to hang this, it is going to be around 50-60 pounds.

I have thought about getting a plywood sheet, and cutting it so it would have arms to go around the cabinets and I can attach the arms to the stud I cannot otherwise reach, and also attach to the other studs. But then how best would I mount the cabinet on the 3/4" plywood? Drywall would be behind plywood, and I am working with wooden studs.

Please help, hoping to get this hung today. Thanks.

  • Please post pictures of the cabinet and the space. Why does it need to be hung? Is this not something that can rest (on legs) on the floor with just a wall anchor to prevent tipping? – Hari Ganti Apr 7 '18 at 20:10
  • Hari, I'd like to mount it in front of the patch panel for aesthetics and cable management. – John Stocker Apr 8 '18 at 0:03
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Your posting is a bit short on details but here is what you want to do.

Cut the 3/4 inch plywood so that it is at least the height of the cabinet and as wide as the space from the corner of the room over to the side of the existing other cabinets.

You will mount this rectangle of plywood flat against the wall with one side of it snug into the corner of the room wall. This plywood would be screwed through the drywall into the corner stud and the other stud. Use some good quality flat head wood screws of size #10x2.75", #10x3" or #12x2.75". Large screws like this will need a clearance hole drilled through the plywood. A pilot hole drilled into the studs will also permit easier installation and prevent the screws from splitting the studs. Four of these screws in each stud should be adequate. If you use a counter sink to bore a taper into the face side of plywood the flat head screws can draw in below the surface of the plywood. This will prevent them from interfering with the cabinet later.

Note that there is also access to the lower edge of the top plate inside the wall right along the corner with the ceiling. If you made the plywood tall enough to reach up to the ceiling you could also put some screws into the top plate too for more holding power.

Note that you should not place the plywood over any electrical boxes in such manner that the electrical box would become hidden. Another concern is that a laundry room is often near the the place where many electrical wires from the electrical panel fan out to other parts of the house in the walls and/or ceiling. For this reason do evaluate carefully so as to not be drilling or screwing into any electrical wires.

Once the plywood is in place you may want to finish it before mounting the cabinet. For raw wood make sure to use a good quality primer before applying the finish paint coats. You could also spackle over the countersunk screw heads so as to hide them and provide a nice flat appearance.

Mounting the cabinet will be a process of securing the back wall of the cabinet against the plywood. Most cabinets will already have holes in the back for just this purpose. If there are no holes then you will want to drill some. These holes should be the clearance size for the screws used to mount the cabinet. Appropriate screws (for a metal backed cabinet) are going to be round or pan head #12x1" wood screws. This size may penetrate the plywood and poke into the drywall some but that is OK. Slide the cabinet into place and mark the hole locations. Then drill pilot holes at those locations for the screws. Mount up the cabinet in place. I would recommend at least four screws if not six of them depending upon the size of the unit. Screws near the rear corners of the cabinet will be better than ones placed in the middle of the back. If there were existing holes that were too large for the heads of the screws you can select an appropriately sized flat washer to place under the screw heads.

  • Thanks Michael. Is it possible to just attach a 2x4 horizontally across the wall, screw that into two different studs, and then attach the mounting plate (or the server rack directly) to that 2x4? What screws would I use as to not have them poking through the back of the drywall into the wall space? – John Stocker Apr 7 '18 at 22:13
  • I would use the plywood. You could use horizontal 2x4s but you would need to use two of them otherwise the cabinet will either wobble or hang crooked. The 2x4s would also look crude and be what you would expect out in a out building or a shack. – Michael Karas Apr 7 '18 at 22:30
  • Michael, I truly appreciate your help and getting back to me so quick. I attached an image to the original post to make what I am doing more clear and easier to understand what Im working with. Red lines are studs, you can see that the builder used the one I was going to use for the leftmost cabinet. Yellow is how I was thinking of cutting a plywood sheet (would that still be strong enough to hold weight if the plywood is cut?), Orange is the 2x4 idea I had going. You can see the cabinet in the picture. It fits in the space with about 2-3 inches to spare. What would you do here? Thanks. – John Stocker Apr 7 '18 at 23:12
  • I see no reason to have the plywood extend over and under the cabinet. Screw it to the corner stud (which you neglected to show in your picture) and to the one stud to the right of the corner. Extend it to the ceiling and screw into the top plate. I would carefully measure and just cut a square hole in the plywood to expose the existing patch panel. You want to keep the plywood in one piece instead of a bunch is small pieces as you have drawn. – Michael Karas Apr 8 '18 at 2:57
  • Michael, That was my main question, Do I need the extra support of that third stud that the current white cabinets are using. The yellow drawings were meant to be one piece of ply cut to those specs, not different pieces of plywood. So you're tell me that I can mount it anywhere on the plywood, if the plywood sheet is mounted to the studs you mentioned from the top of the wall to the bottom of the white cabinet correct? I'm a little afraid of splitting the plywood attaching it at its edges to the corner stud and top plate, any tips for that? And use the round or pan head #12x1" wood screws? – John Stocker Apr 9 '18 at 1:54

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