How to Build Your Own Library Rolling Ladder

Updated April 17, 2017

A rolling library ladder is a great addition to any home library. Rolling ladders attach to the top shelf of a home library and roll along the shelves making it easier to reach books and items on the highest shelves. Rolling ladders can be designed to match any existing home library unit by adjusting both the height and the colour of the ladder. Rolling ladders add both function and elegance to your home library system.

Purchase a rolling library ladder hardware kit from your local home supply store. These kits come with the wheels, poles and casters to finish your library ladder.

Measure your home library shelves from the floor to the tallest shelf. This will be the position for your pole.

Use a standard wooden ladder that fits the measurement you made in Step 2. Most ladders come in 8 foot, 9 foot and 10 foot sizes.

Attach pole brackets to the ends of your book shelves. The ends of the pole should be flush with the ends of your shelves when placed in the brackets. Place pole into brackets and tap the finial ends into the ends of the poles. The finial ends are the stops for the ends of the poles.

Pre-drill holes in your ladder for rungs supports and screw rungs supports into place under each tread on your ladder. Rest the ladder on the pole at the top before attaching the top rolling guides.

Attach rolling hardware to the top of your ladder by centring the top dowel support rod first. Then install the top guides to the ladder and attach the top round dowel support.

Place the ladder in the climbing position and pre-drill holes in the ladder for the bottom rollers. Install the bottom rollers in to the pre-drilled holes.


The top rail height should be about 115 inches for a 10-foot ladder, 103 inches for a 9-foot ladder and 91 inches for an 8-foot ladder. The finished distance from the wall for ladders in the climbing position should be about 19 inches for an 8-foot ladder, 20 inches for a 9-foot ladder and 21 inches for a 10-foot ladder.

Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Patti Richards has been a writer since 1990. She writes children’s books and articles on parenting, women's health and education. Her credits include San Diego Family Magazine, Metro Parent Magazine, Boys' Quest Magazine and many others. Richards has a Bachelor of Science in English/secondary education from Welch College.