My Craftsman Style bed (Wood Magazine plans) is finally finished and
assembled. Pretty disappointed in the rail mounting hardware I got the
plans specified. They consist of two heavy gauge interlocking sheet
metal parts about 5 inches long that mount on the inside of the rail
and on the post like these.
The tabs bend pretty easily and allow movement of the rail in relation
to the post. Anyone have experience with 'bed bolts'? Requires
drilling into the rails and posts but seems they would be stronger than
what I have now.
My rails are 6 1/2 inches tall. Would one per rail end be sufficient
or would two (one near each edge)be better? Any other suggestions for
hardware to use? Thanks
The bed bolts in your second link would work very well and are actually
pretty close to what were historically used (at least from what I've read
and seen before). The decorative covers that hide the bolts aren't really
bad and you can find a lot of options if you don't like those from LV. The
other benefit is that you can easily take the bed apart.
I used the following type of fasteners:
These aren't really difficult to install, and you don't see anything. I
recessed the female portion just a TAD (I'm talking MAYBE 1/32") deeper than
flush, which resulted in the two pieces going together very tightly. The
bed doesn't move after 3 years now. Anyway, this is just another option.
On Mon, 17 Jan 2005 15:47:26 GMT, "Mike in Mystic"
I hate those with a passion. The one part has to fasten into
end-grain. They DO come loose, and the bed squeaks [keep it clean
boys and girls] after a time. The only solution then is to re-screw
it hlonger fatter [might have to drill out the metal] screws ...still
end-grain with ensuing problems.
I'd go for the bolts unless there's something better is suggested
...haven't read all the other replies yet.
I was worried about that as well, but I quickly found a lot of information
explaining how to drill for large hardwood dowels across the grain, in line
with the needed screws. This is what I did and it was a piece of cake. No
end grain issue anymore and nothing has come loose and the bed doesn't
squeak at all. I made the bed out of hard maple and it weighs a lot, but my
wife moves the bedroom furniture around about every 2 weeks, so if the bed
was going to come loose I think it would've happened by now. AT any rate,
the end grain issue is really not an issue at all, IMO.
True - to an extent. I found that if the joint between the headboard and
sideboard is sufficient size (mass) and large screws (I used #12 x 3") and
the fit is very tight, you will have no problems.
I used this same setup on a similar style bed many years ago and it is still
If the sideboards are thin (< 1" or narrow < 6") then a bedbolt would be
Thanks. I noticed that great idea in another post as well; one of
those, "Why didn't I think of that?". I've used a similar idea in the
past myself, but never thought of it. I'll be tackling a bed in the
near future, and appreciate all of the good ideas presented here. My
inclination now is possibly a combination of ideas. That might
require just a very little more effort in assembly. I'll see what I
come up with, and if it's good enough will bring back here for
scrutiny. It might be a while though since I'm temporarily forced to
avoid dust for a month or two.
I used a completely hidden system that is rock solid on the craftsman bed
that I made. Plans are in Jeff Miller's book 'Beds'. Basically, you cut a
shallow mortise into the outside of each leg (where your bolt hole cover
would normally go) and drop in a square nut. The nut should be flush with
the outside of the bed leg. Extend that hole for the bolt througth the leg
and into the bed rail. The bolt then drops into a long shallow mortise on
the inside of each rail, then pushes into the hole extending to the outside
of the leg (to picture this, think of loading a bolt-action rifle). The nut
on the outside of the leg is covered by the 'wings'. Be sure that when you
attach the rails, the thread from the bolt doesn't extend past the nut, or
it will snap the wing right off.
Clear as mud?
I have used bed bolts for 20 years with as yet no problems whatsoever . In
my opinion the longer the bolts are the better as the tendancy to shear out
along the grain is lessened [although I have never experienced that
I get my reproduction hardware from horton brasses ,cromwell conn . I find
this quality first class and their service fast and friendly .i enclose a
link for your convenience
....http://www.horton-brasses.com/products/bedhardware . .....mjh
I don't like the hardware you've used either. I would go with the bed
bolts you've shown. They are very solid and can be tightened as
needed. One per joint is all that is needed. If you haven't already,
you will need to have a shallow M&T joint made in order to prevent the
rail from twisting. I'm using the same bed bolts on a current project
Great, thanks for the input Mike, Leon, Joe C, Mike n, Toolguy and Joe
W. Good ideas, info and new sources. I hadn't consided the necessity
of a mortis/tenon to prevent twisting. Couple of dowels should do it.
Aren't you in the Arkadelphia area?
If you ever get through Texarkana, you should stop at Oak Creek Amish
Furniture, just off of Hwy 67 South, a couple of miles SW of Texarkana.
The bed hardware their suppliers use is the sturdiest stuff I've ever
seen. Very heavy duty! I took note of the name shown on the hardware,
but Google didn't produce any hits.
I know that "Amish" describes the people who make it and the level of
craftsmanship, but I still get a chuckle out of the Amish entertainment
<Aren't you in the Arkadelphia area?>
Happily, no. Went to college there in the 60's and haven't been back
since. I'm a little bit less than slightly more than halfway between
here and there in the west central area.
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