building earthquake proof shelves

By Mike Spadafora; posted August 19, 2015

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I have been earthquake proofing my new shelves since I started living in the Seattle area . We can have strong earthquakes here . I own quite a few very unusual and irreplaceable pieces of considerable historical and monetary value So I feel a particular responsibility to protect them from damage . A big earth quake could instantly wipe out a hundred thousand dollars worth of stuff if you have allot of high dollar insulators and rob future generations of the chance to ever see hold or own the same pieces. ... so it is important to take care of what you have. The methods I am using are low cost and believe well worth the time investment . this could also be helpful if you have small kids or pets that could knock things around or damage them by accident . For glass pieces you could paint the shelves white and illuminate or back light them and still have great protection from quakes . Because I have mostly porcelain just keeping the shelves as natural wood and I will later install a few track lights in front on the ceiling for display lighting . Following are a few photos of how I am doing this .... Each shelf is constructed of good fir planks and timbers using long threaded screws in pre drilled holes and each shelf is firmly anchored to the wall studs in several places as well as the floor itself . This photo shows Drilling holes in the top shelf for bigger rods to hold insulators up to 10" tall and 11" wide