One of the common issues discussed by music lovers in general and those who possess a large collection of songs especially in the form of CDs, MP3 and DVD discs is their proper storage. The problem is compounded by the fact that nowadays even recent films are available on authorised CDs and more people are buying them to be enjoyed leisurely in the comfort of their living rooms. Even though CDs occupy lesser space compared to gramophone records the fact remains that there is a felt need for storage systems in the absence of which CDs are kept scattered all over the room.
As far as CD racks available in our neighbouring markets are concerned one will find that ideas of storage have not progressed beyond the normal kitchen racks used for holding plates. The CDS come in square(about 6”x 6”) unfoldable plastic or paper board packets. The DVDs and MP3s come also in rectangular(7”x5’’) folders. CD racks modelled on kitchen racks, therefore, face something like a square peg in round hole syndrome.
The problem of storing CDs can be considerably reduced by using easily made at home ladder racks in which CDs can be conveniently stacked. Let me show you one such rack made by me which I found very useful and convenient. The materials required are simple and easily available in the market. One needs only a hacksaw blade with frame, a small hammer, a screw driver as tools which, I think, most of the households will be having.The raw materials required are:
1. Woodden (preferably teakwood) reapers of the thickness of 1”x1/2” or 1”x1” or 1”x3/4” of the required lengths. These are available in shops selling plywood sheets and similar items.
2. Small thin nails 1”in size, ¾” screws with screw sleeves or plugs and simple but strong 4” wall brackets all available in hardware shops. One rack will require 4 wall brackets.
3. Sand paper, a small quantity of black paint or ‘Touch wood’.
The rack is simply a ladder which is fixed on the wall with wall brackets. Firtst step to make it is to cut two lengthy pieces of the reaper, say, of 3’ feet or 3 ½ feet in length each depending on the number of steps you want.This will form the outer frames of the ladder. Then cut small reaper pieces of the size of 6’’ the number again depending on the number of steps required for the ladder. The inner distance(height) between the steps should be 6’’ for storing the normal CD folders and 8 inches” for the rectangular folders. Using the sand paper the frames and the pieces of reapers(steps) should be given a smooth finish. Then the steps may be fixed, by using the thin wire nails,between the two frames the first one at the bottom with the smaller sides of the frame and step facing out if the reaper used is not square.
When all the steps are fixed and strengthened with adequate number of nails, the wall brackets can be fixed as shown in the picture. The wall brackets should not be bigger than 4’’ and it should be fixed on the step in such a way that the distance between the wall and the inner edge of the frames and steps will be 4’’ minus the width of the steps. Otherwise the CDs,as only a small portion of the CD folder will be resting on the steps, will fall off. Before fixing the ladder on the wall an even coat of black paint or ‘Touchwood’ can be given. Allow enough time for the paint to dry and then fix it on the wall near your music system as shown in the picture by using 3/4” inch screws. The CDs can then be stacked on the ladder. Each section of the ladder can hold between 15 to 20 CDs depending on their thickness and about 100 CDs can be stacked on a ladder of 3 ½ feet. The cost of a 3 ½ feet rack excluding own labour will be around Rs.100/-
This is only a basic model and one can improve it using one’s own ideas. Bigger/thicker reapers can also be used by which a double ladder rack with only three frames can also be made thus saving the cost of one frame though cutting a thicker reaper with a hacksaw may become a bit difficult for beginners. Cassette racks can also be made on similar lines but the wall bracket should be of only 2 inches.The rack can be fixed on the wall horizontally also depending on the need, space constraint, size of the CD folder and individual preferences.
Keeping one’s musical equipments etc. neatly arranged and readily accessible , many say, is the first step to love and enjoy music. So please try this out.