I hate to waste anything, so even when stuff is broken beyond repair, I try to salvage anything on that item that might possibly be useful somewhere else.
One of the things that I always keep is the castor wheels from desk chairs. Desk chairs only seem to last so long before the seats wear out or the backs get broken. Sometimes the innards that make the chairs go up and down break down and don’t work any more. In any case, usually they have at least 4 castor wheels that just click into the base.
It’s handy to have spare wheels anyway, because sometimes they are what breaks on a chair. Most of them are just made from plastic, so they do break occasionally and need to be replaced. It’s pretty handy just to be able to unsnap a broken castor and pop in one that’s good from a chair that isn’t any more.
Recently I put some of those extra castors to good use with some old book shelves for my son’s home office. He has a really small area for his desk and doesn’t really have any wall space to set the bookshelves out in the open. As it turned out, the shelves were almost the same width as his desk is and a little bit higher than the top of his desk.
What I did was drill four holes in the corners of the bottom of the bookshelves big enough to insert the shaft of my spare castor wheels. The bottom of the shelf was thick enough to keep the wheels sitting secure, although they do stick out a bit through the shelf.
Then we put a shelf in on either side of the desk so that when they are in the closed position the shelves are hidden by the side of the desk. These particular shelves are exactly a shelf higher than the top of the desk, so the top shelf is accessible at all times. That’s kind of handy for extra storage on either side of his desk. He uses the rest of the shelves to store things he doesn’t need to access all the time. When he needs something from the shelf, he just pulls it out like a big drawer. I didn’t put a handle on the side of the bookshelves to pull them out, but I could easily have done so.