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  • Wood for shelving/rack

    I want to build a wine rack and some shelving in a room off the basement that gets damp in the summer. No water coming in just high humidity. The rack will be about 32wx66hx8d with 10 shelves holding 8 bottles each. I was thinking of using poplar as I'm planning on painting the wood with a mildew resistant paint. Any problems using poplar in high humidity and is it strong enough? Any suggestions?

  • #2
    Re: Wood for shelving/rack

    With a width of only 32 inches Poplar would not be a problem, in my opinion. Nor would pine for that matter. Both are significantly strong, provided your design and construction technique provide for weight and any stress should you want to move the assembly in the future. I've made several bookcases of approximately those proportions and I get no sag. (With a total width of 32 inches, the shelves are about 30-1/2 inches.) I believe a shelf full of books would be significantly heavier than a a roll of wine bottles.

    My concern with a high humidity level would be mildew or other mold. My basement at this house has been all too humid this last summer and I've found mildew-like mold on several bare wood pieces. (My basement now has a de-humidifier.)

    I think a coat of paint w/primer should provide some protection, if it has anti-mildew properties. I have seen an anti-mold treatment at my local Home Depot, but I can't recall the name of the product. As I recall, it comes in a one or two gallan plastic jug, as a concentrate. It coats the surface and provides a protective barrier. You might also take precautions to use fastseners that are coated to protect against rust.

    I hope this helps,

    CWS

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    • #3
      Re: Wood for shelving/rack

      I'll use the kitchen/bathroom paint from Benjanin Moore with the mildew inhibitor. I hadn't thought about coated fasteners, thanks for the info. I will attach the rack to the wall for added support.

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      • #4
        Re: Wood for shelving/rack

        If your shelf/wine rack will be on concrete you may want to use some plastic stick-on or tack on "feet" (I can't think of the name). Since the shelf will be supporting relatively heavy objects in a potentially humid environment I would also suggest a support beam under each shelf to prevent sagging.

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        • #5
          Re: Wood for shelving/rack

          White oak brother!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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          • #6
            Re: Wood for shelving/rack

            Originally posted by jparson1 View Post
            White oak brother!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
            Really. That's what the barrels are made of that wine is fermented in, and they're often stored in dark, damp, underground facilities.

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            • #7
              Re: Wood for shelving/rack

              I was planning on using feet or a small block of pressure treated wood on the bottom of each rack.
              Oak was my first choice, but any unfinished wood in this room quickly mildews. Also the cost for WO and my lack of experience seemed to make poplar a better choice. My TS needs an upgrade too - still waiting for the HD sale.

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              • #8
                Re: Wood for shelving/rack

                install a small fan and move that humid air out
                §m€llŸ™

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                • #9
                  Re: Wood for shelving/rack

                  I've found that using a wood block on the floor just absorbs moisture and doesn't do much for protecting the feet of any stand. I use old ceramic tiles or paver blocks; they work quite well, and don't absorb or wick moisture from the floor.

                  CWS

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                  • #10
                    Re: Wood for shelving/rack

                    Thanks CW - I have tile left over from a renovation. I knew if I saved it long enough I'd have a use for it!

                    Only place to vent is into the finished basement (can't do that) or out through the foundation.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Wood for shelving/rack

                      TChads,

                      You know, I have found "venting" to almost make the problem worse. Depends on the humidity of the outside air, but up here in NY's southern tier, the humidity is just horrendous except during winter.

                      When we first bought this house over thirty years ago, the first thing I did was open all the basement windows and put a fan down there to get rid of the musty smell. WRONG thing to do as within a matter of days I literally had water dripping off the walls and ceiling. All the "venting" did was introduce warm humid outside air into a cooler basement where it condenced and made for further problems.

                      I've found the only way to attack the problem was with a de-humidifier unless you are able to go to the expense of insulating everything with proper vapor barriers. Still, that doesn't keep the floor from being cold and I simply don't have the ceiling heigth to lay in an insulated floor.

                      I hope this helps,

                      CWS

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                      • #12
                        Re: Wood for shelving/rack

                        CWS-
                        We have the same issues here in NJ. The room is already has about 8in of insulation all around but I don't know if there is a proper vapor barrier. We do run the de-humidifier May thru October in the finished portion of the baesment.

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