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My living room has a wall with a 10-foot-wide alcove, which has a set of windows that share a Craftsman-kinda window trim with a 2x3 capitol - maybe not the correct term, but see picture.

I have a 10-foot-long 2x6 board to attach above this, as a shelf. (I think it goes better with the trim style than a 1x6 board). But that’s heavy obviously so what method is good to attach it to the wall? Brackets? Pocket screws?

The wall surface is probably 1 or 2 layers of drywall or that grainy, concrete-looking wall stuff that’s in the kitchen.

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  • The way I install all shelfs are: Buy a threaded iron rod, cut into 6 1/2" sections, Drill holes 5" deep in the side of the 2x6x10 for the rod to slide into, then drill a hole 1" 1/2 into the other walls studs, the hole should be slightly smaller than the threaded rod so you can use the rod to thread the hole in the wall. With the rods in the wall slide your 2x6x10 into the 5" sticking out, then drill a much smaller hole in the bottom of the 2x6x10 where the iron inserts are, make sure it penetrates the rod, insert your regular 1" 1/2 screw in the hole through the rod where it grabs the wood.
    – hello moto
    Jun 9, 2020 at 18:32
  • I did much the same as @moto, except with 1/2" copper tubing. I did not use any screws and it stayed tight for years. Jun 9, 2020 at 18:36

3 Answers 3

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So, the good news is that you almost certainly have solid wood all above the window to fasten to. This makes it a good candidate for blind shelf supports. (Google, but rockler sells them...)

Alternately (and cheaper), you could have inverted L brackets. Paint the top legs wall color and you'll stop noticing them. Only your fussiest visitors would notice. It's up to you to decide how sturdy you need, but if you find that you haven't got enough to be comfortable, simply add a few more.

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  • If he's planning on putting a lot of weight on the shelf, plants etc, I'd recommend 4 either triangular, or nicely routed and curved brackets going down at least 8" below the shelf. Those right angle metal brackets are OK, but will buckle under serious weight. A couple screws into window frame apiece, countersunk, with covering plugs, should be strong enough, and still look decent. Jul 22, 2018 at 4:10
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If you want the best performance and look the french cleat is your best bet. You can either create this yourself using the shelf or you can buy brackets to help you.

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An L-bracket will not hold, if weight is up there. A triangle of metal would work, many types out there. Even wood ones. Would use four brackets. Should be a header in the frame to screw to. I'm talking about brace on top of shelf so window treatment works.

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