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Newbie here! Among other things, I collect Starbucks mugs from my travels. I have over a hundred mugs and they have spent most of their life in boxes in the garage - until now! I was thinking of displaying them and was thinking of using several rows of BYGEL rails from IKEA and "S" hooks.

I have two perpendicular walls I was thinking of hanging them on. I can hang only six mugs on each rail, which would mean I would need around 20 rails (scope for expansion). I was thinking of hanging two rows of rails on one wall, and one row on the other. To make it look even, that would mean 2 rows of 7 rails on one wall, and one row of 7 on another. My fear is whether the dry wall will be able to hold this kind of weight. Each mug weighs 1.1lb, and the rail 1lb. So one wall would have to hold around 107lbs of weight, while the other around 53lbs.

I will not be able to screw the rails into the studs as it will not be aligned aesthetically. So I will have to use dry wall anchors.

Do you see any concerns with my design? Will the dry wall be able to hold this kind distributed weight? I really appreciate your feedback.

Thanks so much.

JK

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It's hard to say whether your drywall will support this, it might, it might not. Big factors are the thickness, condition, and stud spacing. As well, if the bars ever experience a dynamic load like someone bumping into it, pulling on mugs, etc. it might very well fail while it was fine with a static load.

The "right" way to do this is to open up the walls and install blocking between studs so that you can mount your bars to a solid support instead of the drywall. Or alternatively, install a piece of plywood on top of the drywall, anchored to the studs, and then mount your bars to the plywood. You could paint it to match the wall.

  • Thanks so much, Steven. I like this idea of using a plywood plank and attaching it to the studs. In fact with this approach, I could totally do away with the rails and use hooks directly on the plank. How thick (deep) do you suggest the plank be? – JK Saabh Jun 10 '15 at 19:50
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    1/2" would be plenty, you could probably get away with 1/4 even – Steven Jun 10 '15 at 23:28
  • Thanks Steven. Will go to the hardware store and pick up a whole bunch of planks and cup hangers. – JK Saabh Jun 10 '15 at 23:52
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100 pounds is not an impossible load. Heavy mirrors routinely weigh that much and are often mounted in drywall using two anchor points.

No question, mounting on studs is much stronger and more reliable. Also, as pointed out by @Steven, dynamic loads are much more challenging than static loads. Repeated strong tugs could weaken an otherwise fine mounting.

If you cannot use existing studs, add blocking or use a plywood backer as suggested by Steven, you could use heavy duty toggle bolts like these

toggler

These spread the load over a much larger areas than simple expansion anchors. They also allow the bolt to be removed and reinserted if needed.

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Make an additional support!

Just take a long plank (or whatever You may think of as an aestethically-looking construction item) and attach it to the studs (if You are sure where they are), then - attach Your hangers to the plank/support.
Given this You may want to choose whatever You like to look good and it will function well. If You will use correct screws (that means, not some ridiculously small or so), everything will be great, including 'the look'.

I recommend to attach this quite firm so any additional load do not spoil Your collection. Other 'pro' is that You don't need to uncover dry wall.

  • Thanks so much, Marek. I like this idea of using a long plank and attaching it to the studs. In fact with this approach, I could totally do away with the rails and use hooks directly on the plank. How thick do you suggest the plank be? Thanks. – JK Saabh Jun 10 '15 at 19:48
  • @JK Saabh I would suggest somewhat thick plank because of 2 things: 1) it's more aestethically-looking; 2) the screws/rails' lenght should match plank's thickness (unless You want to make additional holes in dry wall) – Marek Oleszczuk Jun 11 '15 at 6:26
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TL/DR version:

It doesn't matter how many of those rails you put into any one sheet of drywall (assuming they are not crazy close together). Those loads won't interact with each other. The problem with drywall is preventing the fastener from pulling out - if your fastener doesn't pull out, then you're going to be fine.

Longer:

You can ignore the vertical component of the load (drywall won't fail that way in this case). What your cups and rails are doing is they are creating a torsional load on the drywall's fasteners (e.g., trying to pull the drywall itself off the wall). That drywall will be fastened with dozens of screws, so the load on each of them will remain small.

Even if you removed all those screws, the tape-seams (especially at the top of the drywall) would be enough to support a small load like this.

I have seen kitchen cabinets hung on toggle-bolts with no issue - that's way more than what you are planning. I have many shelves in my own house mounted on appropriate drywall anchors that definitely weigh more than what you are planning.

So again, pick a good drywall anchor (maybe not the plastic wall ones) and you'll be fine. Worry about the individual rails, the wall will be fine. It's not even close.

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