After many years of halfheartedly displaying my miniatures on dusty bookshelves, I decided to go all in and acquire a proper display case. Once I had completed a bit of research I pulled the trigger on the Ikea Detolf, This glass-door cabinet is perfect for displaying anything and the $20 upgrade for LED lights was a no-brainer.
At the $70 price-point the Detolf comes in well below most display cabinets, especially one this size. I, as you could have guessed, have no problem what so ever doing a bit of construction and am happy to save a few bucks and put it together myself. As happy as I am with the display case there is one issue, the case was not built with displaying 28mm miniatures in mind. The four shelves leave a massive amount of vertical space unused for items this small and even with my rule that only painted models go in the case, I quickly ran out of room. The solution? Add more shelves!
Once again I did some research and as it turns out, I was not the only person with this problem. I found a great tutorial on a Transformers collectors blog from 2011 and with my shopping list in hand, I headed to the hardware store.
Per optimusfan’s tutorial, I picked up eight 3/16″ wire rope clips (four for each shelf) and a set of Scotch mounting squares to put in the four corners of the new shelves. Now, unlike the forum post, I was able to get glass cut for the incredibly fair price of $4.58 each. I was a bit worried that each shelf was going to cost $20 or more. But it turns out, everything I needed for both shelves ended up being $19.77.
The first step was the apply the wire rope clips to the frame of display case. These will act as the supports for the new glass panes. It took some fiddling to get them all level but once they were attached, the seemed solid enough. What I realized too late was that I should have cut the new shelves a bit deeper than the originals. The clips did not reach under the glass as much as I would like, but it will do.
With all four attached the case was ready for the new shelf. I put four mounting squares on each corner to help with the stability and so that the shelf was not a glass pane resting on bare metal.
Need to put in the other one. The Germans are displayed on the new shelf below the Chindits and above the Dwarfs. For less than $20 I added two more shelves to the display case and almost doubled the amount of space to display and store my models. With Adepticon 2017 fast approaching and Blood & Plunder arrivingin December, I’m going to need this extra room.
The only downside of this modification is that light barely reaches the bottom shelves. The display lights at the top of the unit are not powerful enough to light the figures through the extra shelves. It’s a small drawback and I am happy to make the trade for the extra storage space.
2 thoughts on “Ikea Detolf display case extra shelves upgrade”
Andrew, nice tip! I have the same unit with the same problem (not enough shelves!).
Question: Where did you get your glass cut?
Thanks Jim! I got them cut at a local Ace Hardware. They had the glass on hand, I brought in one of the existing shelves and asked them to duplicate.