Re: Compact Shelving for Serials (7 messages) Birdie MacLennan 29 Aug 2000 20:15 UTC

7 messages, 214 lines:

Date:         Tue, 29 Aug 2000 12:37:10 -0400
From:         Steve Black <blacks@MAIL.STROSE.EDU>
Subject:      Re: Compact Shelving for Serials


  We don't have them for serials, just books, but my one bit of advice is
to get the hand cranked kind.  Don't get the ones with electric motors!
Ours have been very trouble prone over the years, and we *really* wish we
had the kind that move by turning a wheel.

Steve Black
Reference,Instruction, and Serials Librarian
Neil Hellman Library
The College of Saint Rose
392 Western Avenue
Albany, NY 12203
(518) 458-5494

Date:         Tue, 29 Aug 2000 18:37:08 +0200
From:         Eliane Chaney <>
Subject:      Re: Compact Shelving for Serials

Our Library, 4 years ago, chose the solution of compact shelving for part
of the serials collection and we (librarians & readers) are very

The reading room is open free access, 24 hours a day all year round and
not staffed at night. There has been no incident, misuse, or breakdown so

Our shelves are composed of some 60 elements (double side shelves), 6
shelves high,  but not wider than 1m30.
We opted for that solution in order to get more shelving space, next to
conventional open shelves.

Our supplier is Swiss, but surely you find equivalent products in the US.

Eliane Chaney

Serials Librarian
CERN Library
CH - 1211 GENEVA 23

Date:         Tue, 29 Aug 2000 13:37:23 -0400
From:         Lauren Corbett <lcorbett@ODU.EDU>
Subject:      Re: Compact Shelving for Serials


We have some compact shelving and on tours I demonstrate using it.  Some
people have a little fear of something new.  I don't think we've had any
serious complaints or problems.  I once visited another library that was
not entirely happy with their electronic compact shelving.  We have manual
cranks and can easily move multiple units at a time.

Also we consider the compact shelving as giving some protection against
disasters.  It's in our hurricane preparedness plan to close the units
together when we are in a hurricane watch.

Lauren Corbett
Serials Services Librarian
Perry Library
Old Dominion University
Norfolk, VA  23529-0256
Ph: (757) 683-4144
Fax: (757) 683-5954

Date:         Tue, 29 Aug 2000 13:50:49 -0400
From:         "Madeline P Windsor" <windsor@EXCHANGE.BNL.GOV>
Subject:      Re: Compact Shelving for Serials


We used them for a part of the collection that did not have a lot of
activity.  They were accessable to the Library users as well as staff.
It turned out not to be a good idea.

The activity was high enough that it became a safety issue when more than
one person wanted to access different aisles at the same time.  It was a
manual system and several times one person tried closing an aisle while
someone else was in it?  Power driven systems were questionable at the
time, that is, what do you do if the power was cut off because of a flood,
sprinkler system goes off, etc.?

We eventually removed them, and put the material in an Annex not to far
from the Library.

On the other hand we are still using them for our technical reports,
because that collection has limited access (staff only).

Hope this helps?

Have a great day!
Madeline Windsor
631 344 5069

Date:         Tue, 29 Aug 2000 14:28:54 -0400
From:         "David Goodman" <dgoodman@PRINCETON.EDU>
Subject:      Re: Compact shelving

Princeton has done this extensively for many years.

I was the first of our librarians to do this: when I was Chemistry
Librarian I installed a small range of manually operated moving shelves in
a side room for the older parts of the sets. When the Chemistry Library
was expanded, the shelving for ALL the bound journals (and chemists use a
lot of journals!) was done as compact shelving.

The experience was favorable. As a result, most of the ground floor of the
lowest floor of the main library (Firestone) is compact shelving: the
entire run of some of the LC classifications is entirely compact shelving
(serials and monographs). It is also being used in other branch libraries
as they afre expanded or reconstructed.

One peculiarity is that all of it is manually operated. This was a quirk
of a previous University Librarian; though it works, I would not recommend
it. The installations are mainly on ground floors; installation on an
upper floor usually gives too great a mechanical load on the floor without
expensive reinforcement.

Any patron unhappiness at the inconvience is more than compensated for by
their satisfaction at having all the material on site, rather than in our
Annex (which also uses compact shelving).

David Goodman

Date:         Tue, 29 Aug 2000 14:31:48 -0400
From:         "Dolores Coyle" <Coyled@CAMELOT.BEAVER.EDU>
Subject:      Re: Compact Shelving for Serials

At Beaver we have compact shelving for all of our periodicals.  Last year,
we replaced the thirty-plus-year-old electronic compact shelving with
manual shelving.  If you are going with compact shelving units, I would
suggest avoiding the electronic shelving for two reasons:  Manual
compacting shelving is less dangerous and does not have the maintenance
problems associated with the electronic system. When our old electronic
system started to go, there were times when the shelving was inaccessible
to anyone.  Also, as it broke, the shelving gods would occasionally move
the shelving on a whim, and you could not stop it even if you used the
safety feature.  We just barely avoided a few casualties. Manual shelving
moves only if someone is moving it, and therefore can easily be halted so
people can get out of the way.

Good Luck,

Dolores Coyle
Atwood Library
Beaver College

Date:         Tue, 29 Aug 2000 13:42:43 -0500
From:         Amy Anderson <andersoa@SOUTHWESTERN.EDU>
Subject:      Re: Compact Shelving for Serials

Hi Judy,

We have just put compact shelving in our bound periodical area this
summer, so we are just now starting to get a reaction from our
students.  Did you have any particular questions?  So far it seems to
be OK.

Amy Anderson

Amy Fuge Anderson                               email:
Head, Periodical Services                       phone: 512-863-1639
Smith Library Center                    fax: 512-863-1155
Southwestern University
Georgetown, TX  78626

> -----Original Message-----
> From: SERIALST: Serials in Libraries Discussion Forum
> [mailto:SERIALST@LIST.UVM.EDU]On Behalf Of Judy McConnell
> Sent: Tuesday, August 29, 2000 12:03 PM
> Subject: Compact Shelving for Serials
> Greetings,
> Has anyone had any experience with using compact shelving for serials
> accessable to the public?   Because of space problems, we are
> contemplating using these for storing our back issues of periodicals .
> I would like to hear the pros and cons from others who have tried this
> type of shelving.
> Thanks in advance,
> Judy F. McConnell
> Assistant Professor
> Serials Librarian
> Penn College Library DIF #69
> One College Avenue
> Williamsport, PA 17701-5799
> Phone: 570-320-2400  X7458
> Fax: 570-327-4503
> E-mail: