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Discussion Starter #1
What is the best practice to anchor a 2'X4' N scale module to the wall? Preferably without support legs but I am open to throwing them on there if need be.

My first thought was 3" x 3/8" lag bolts into the studs but I am open to other ways.
 

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I would first attach another 2x4 to the wall horizontally with 2 4" screws driven into the studs, then use 5 more 4" screws to anchor the second 2x4 to the first, for additional support, cut 3 braces and screw them into both 2x4's on an angle. There are other (probably better) ways to do this, but this is how I've done it in the past.
 

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I would use lag bolts, but I don't have a clear idea of what the lag bolts will go through. If you have a really robust framework, I'd use the lag bolts plus large steel washers to help to distribute the forces around the bolt.

But really, I would use robust brackets, still with lag bolts and large washers, to prevent an accidental and catastrophic grab or fall against the frame, busting it up and sending it all to the floor. The only other option I would consider would be to cantilever the frame using 2X4 on edge and bolted to the studs through the drywall. Yup, I'd make the holes.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I think that is the direction that I am going towards. Getting long lag bolts and large washers to distribute the load. If they are in the studs with 16" I would be shocked if I had any problems. Maybe 3 bolts on each 4' section.
 

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My 0.02. Use 8 foot 2x2 along the wall. Five 4" #12 screws. The back of the tabletop should sit on this ledger and go all the way to the wall.
Drill down thru the table top into the ledger board and push a #10 nail (prolly need to cut off) into the hole. A countersink will make the head flush. At the front, use a 3/4 x 3/4 brace from the inside of the fascia board, angled down to the floor (or the top of the baseboard is neater.) These (three places) should "socket" in on both ends; use your own design.

The module installed this way is instantly removable just by lifting it up. There is no force or moment to dislodge it otherwise. Many variations of module construction, table top/fascia are possible.

This is just a shelf. You don't need to stand on it. It will support your modules until the sun freezes over. And anytime you need to lift out a module, your toughest job is removing loose items and cleaning. 馃槅
 

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Discussion Starter #6
My 0.02. Use 8 foot 2x2 along the wall. Five 4" #12 screws. The back of the tabletop should sit on this ledger and go all the way to the wall.
Drill down thru the table top into the ledger board and push a #10 nail (prolly need to cut off) into the hole. A countersink will make the head flush. At the front, use a 3/4 x 3/4 brace from the inside of the fascia board, angled down to the floor (or the top of the baseboard is neater.) These (three places) should "socket" in on both ends; use your own design.

The module installed this way is instantly removable just by lifting it up. There is no force or moment to dislodge it otherwise. Many variations of module construction, table top/fascia are possible.

This is just a shelf. You don't need to stand on it. It will support your modules until the sun freezes over. And anytime you need to lift out a module, your toughest job is removing loose items and cleaning. 馃槅
I like being able to make them removable. Especially when we move in the future or I want to install another module there.
 

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3/8 bolts is too big, remember you are going into a 1-1/2" piece of wood, You don't want to split it.
Make sure you drill deep pilot holes into the 2x4 in the wall.
Two 3/8 lag bolts dead center will have a good chance of splitting the 2x4.

Are you not using diagonal braces underneath?
They could go to the floor at the wall. Not really a leg, right?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
3/8 bolts is too big, remember you are going into a 1-1/2" piece of wood, You don't want to split it.
Make sure you drill deep pilot holes into the 2x4 in the wall.
Two 3/8 lag bolts dead center will have a good chance of splitting the 2x4.

Are you not using diagonal braces underneath?
They could go to the floor at the wall. Not really a leg, right?
What would be a good size lag bold 1/4" or 1/2"? I had not originally thought about putting diagonal braces in.
 

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I guess maybe, the drift of my post was unclear.
Five 4" #12 screws
3/4 x 3/4 brace from the inside of the fascia board, angled down to the floor (or the top of the baseboard
That's a 10-penny nail pushed down into the 2x2.
Picture is worth 1000 words
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I guess maybe, the drift of my post was unclear.
Five 4" #12 screws
3/4 x 3/4 brace from the inside of the fascia board, angled down to the floor (or the top of the baseboard
That's a 10-penny nail pushed down into the 2x2.
Picture is worth 1000 words
yea picture helps out a lot. That makes a lot more sense.
 

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For my staging area, I attached everything to the wall with no legs to the floor. One section (which also supports a drop down) is a cantilever. Another section is a roughly 10 foot span between two walls. It might be overkill for what you are doing, but might also give you some ideas. I鈥檓 pretty sure I used 录鈥 lag bolts (the head size is 7/16鈥).

THE NEW STAGING AREA
 

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Discussion Starter #13
For my staging area, I attached everything to the wall with no legs to the floor. One section (which also supports a drop down) is a cantilever. Another section is a roughly 10 foot span between two walls. It might be overkill for what you are doing, but might also give you some ideas. I鈥檓 pretty sure I used 录鈥 lag bolts (the head size is 7/16鈥).

THE NEW STAGING AREA
I assume you are refering to a braced cantilever?
 

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Drawing2.png
Another iteration... Less interference under the module.
As you can see, there are many ways to skin this cat!! 馃槄
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I like that a lot.

shifting subjects a bit, what is the best way to key all of the shelf modules level with each other?
 

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I would go with something like CID shows. Only I would use 1x4 and 1x2 lumber and keep dia brace to around 45 degree. It's a shelf!
Part of my layout is 10' wide built with 1x4 frame screw to stud with 2" deck screw and cantilever on legs out 8'. I can walk on it without any thing moving.馃
 

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If you want removable, consider a French cleat at the top, and braces at the bottom as did shows. A French cleat is made by ripping a board with a diagonal cut. One half is permanently mounted to the wall, with the diagonal edge facing up. The second is attached to the underside of the shelf with the diagonal cut facing down. This way all you have to do is lift it out.
 

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I like that a lot.

shifting subjects a bit, what is the best way to key all of the shelf modules level with each other?
Dowels or biscuit joiners in the sides of each module.
 
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