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Bed rails...Lag bolts?

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Forum topic by 12strings posted 06-13-2013 11:49 AM 1801 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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12strings

406 posts in 1038 days


06-13-2013 11:49 AM

Are Lag-bolts screwed into the end-grain of bed rails a good method for attaching them? It seems llike I have seen and heard of this being done…but it doesn’t seem to fit the fact that most people consider screwing into end-grain to be an inferior joint.

Would such a joint get weak over time, especially if it was dis-assembled a few times? Tendancy to strip-out?

(I’m assuming here that a proper pilot hole was drilled).

Would it be better to inset a cross-grained dowel on the inside of the bed rail for the lag to grab onto? or just plan a different type of joint altogether?

-- I'm strictly hand-tool only...unless the power tool is faster and easier!


7 replies so far

View scotsman9's profile

scotsman9

134 posts in 543 days


#1 posted 06-13-2013 12:07 PM

Bed bolts and bed frame hardware are relatively inexpensive. e.g.
http://www.leevalley.com/US/hardware/page.aspx?p=40445&cat=3,40842,41269

-- Just a man and his opinion.

View NiteWalker's profile

NiteWalker

2710 posts in 1231 days


#2 posted 06-13-2013 12:37 PM

It would weaken over time. +1 for bed bolts.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View crank49's profile

crank49

3434 posts in 1625 days


#3 posted 06-13-2013 05:43 PM

The cross dowels would be much better than end grain. That’s how I attached the short stretchers on my work bench and they have held tight for 3 years now. I used 1-1/4” diameter maple dowels.

But bed bolts are probably better, or at least as good and a lot easier.

-- Michael :-{| “If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.” ― A H

View Tony Strupulis's profile

Tony Strupulis

240 posts in 1777 days


#4 posted 07-02-2013 12:22 AM

Spend the big money for bed bolts. Lag bolts will strip out in end grain. If you go with lag bolts, definitely put a cross grain dowel in.

Depending on the thickness of your rails, you might be able to inset a dowel from the inside of the rail and not have it show from the outside of the bed.

-- Tony - http://ravensedgetoolworks.com

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

3455 posts in 2614 days


#5 posted 07-02-2013 12:51 AM

Bed bolts for sure.
Bill

-- bill@magraphics.us

View Loren's profile

Loren

7554 posts in 2302 days


#6 posted 07-02-2013 07:48 AM

No.

Confirmats might be better.

You can use standard carriage bolts and square nuts
but drilling a hole in the back of the rail for access to
each nut. I’d leave 1/4” of material after drilling and
with 1/4” carriage bolts 3/4” rails seems to thin -
I’d go with 7/8” plus which generally means getting
good 5/4 stock for an 80” rail.

An alternative is tension rods running 2 to a rail in
grooves. My workbench is built this way, more or
less (got the idea from Lee Valley), and it’s the most
solid joinery under racking you can ask for.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View sprucegum's profile

sprucegum

323 posts in 652 days


#7 posted 07-02-2013 02:23 PM

I have used the method described by Loren incorporated with a tendon on the end of the rail inserted into a mortise in the post. A very solid method. I used 8/4 for the rail planed to 6/4 with a 1”x4” tendon.

-- A tube of calk and a gallon of paint will make a carpenter what he ain't

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