How Do I Join Vertical Posts Like These Ones? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 12:15 PM Thread Starter
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Question How Do I Join Vertical Posts Like These Ones?

Hi there, Everyone:

I am inexperienced at wood working so pardon me if my vocabulary is wrong.

I am trying to make clothing stands similar to the ones in the photo below.

How should I attach the vertical posts to the horizontal wood base? Also, how should I attach the horizontal piece that extends out at the top of the vertical post? (Screws? Nails? Glue?)

It looks like the horizontal arm goes through a hole near the top of the vertical post and sticks out about an inch out the backside of the vertical post. (You can't see this in the photo, but I have seen them in real life and it loos like it passes through the vertical post.)

Also, what dimension wood do you think I should use? (In the photo, it looks like the base might be a 2 X 12 about 14 inches long, and the vertical post looks like a 2 X 2 about 65 inches tall). What would you suggest?

Unfortunately, I will probably have to use soft woods (pine or douglass fir) for the base, post, and horizontal arm. Is that doable? Or do I need to use hardwoods?

I would prefer NOT to use any bracing if possible so that it closely resembles the ones in the photo. But if I have to use bracing, then can you suggest a type of bracing that won't obstruct LONG pieces of clothing that might dangle down to the base?

Thanks in advance.

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post #2 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 02:53 PM Thread Starter
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BTW: I went to the local lumber yard and they said NOT to use any soft woods; they said only hard woods would be able to provide a decent joint strength.

Do you think that is true? Or are they just trying to get me to buy more expensive wood?
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post #3 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 03:00 PM
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They are correct in the long term

A mortise and tenon joint would be best. A rectangular section would be stronger than a square section. A triangular brace in the intersection would be stronger yet. A long draw bolt up from the bottom would also help. The bottom joint is the weakest because of the long leverage from the vertical post. The upper joint has a shorter lever arm so it's not so critical, but any re-enforcement is better than none. bill

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #4 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 03:15 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the response, woodnthings:

Would the mortise and tenon joint be for where the vertical post joins the base? Or is that for where the horizontal "flag" joins the vertical post up near the top?

If I end up doing a triangular brace at the bottom of the vertical post, is there any formula for how big that triangle brace needs to be? Also, what would be the best way to fasten it to the base and the vertical post?

Thanks in advance.
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post #5 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 03:48 PM
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Use a M&T at both places

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mortise_and_tenon

The base will have a mortise (rectangular straight sided opening) and the post will have 2 shouldered tenons,1 top and 1 at the bottom.
The top brace could also have wedged tenon like this below:
For an extensive look at woodworking joints visit this site:
http://www.hobbithouseinc.com/person...ineryterms.htm





Another cool joint:

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)

Last edited by woodnthings; 07-25-2012 at 03:53 PM.
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post #6 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 03:52 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks again for the response and the link!
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post #7 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 03:54 PM
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look again I added a link

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wood4Brains View Post
Thanks again for the response and the link!
You're welcome!

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #8 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 04:07 PM
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It is possible to make something strong enough from the soft woods such as pine, doug fir, poplar.

I have many examples in my home.

However, mine are not made from the grade of wood as found in furring strips, which is perhaps the lowest grade. This means more knots, splits, etc. all of which weaken the wood.

If you are using 1x strips, then even weaker.

People can put a decent amount of load on a clothes rack, by leaning on it, pulling on it etc.

You can either make the stands beefy, as in your photo example, or from thinner/weaker wood, which means more attention to design, as Bill mentions, good joints, bracing and reinforcing.
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post #9 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 05:03 PM
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Here's a suggestion. You need three lengths of clear vertical grain Douglas Fir " x 2", by 65", or whatever. Glue them up together. Near the top, drill a through hole 1" at the center. Buy a length of wood closet rod, which will be 1". Cut it off for the length of the hanging rod you want. Glue in the rod to the hole...flush to the back.

Use a 2x12 for the base, and line up the standing column so the back of the column is flush with the back of the 2x. Drill a 1" hole in the center of the column end about 1" deep, and a matching 1" through hole in the 2x. Cut the closet rod about 3" long and glue in the rod into the hole of the column and into the 2x base.

You can dress up all the edges with a small chamfer.





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post #10 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 05:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wood4Brains View Post
BTW: I went to the local lumber yard and they said NOT to use any soft woods; they said only hard woods would be able to provide a decent joint strength.

Do you think that is true? Or are they just trying to get me to buy more expensive wood?
They are incorrect. For what you are doing pine, fir, etc would have all of the strength you need.

I would guess that those posts are larger than 2x2. Maybe 3x3 or even 4x4(which really is only 3.5x3.50).

Do you have the ability to cut a square hole in the base that is the same size as the post? That would be very good if you did. You could set the post into that hole and glue it in place. And then use a couple of relatively small triangles as supports. If not you an run a long lag bolt up into the post through the base. Then use somewhat larger support triangles. The post and base would also be glued together.

At the top I would use a 1", or even a 1 1/2" dowel as the rod between the posts. You would cut a hole in the posts the same size as the rod. I would let the rod float in the hole and not try to permanently fasten it into place. This would enable you to break down the unit for transport.

The rods would be kept from moving in the hole in the post by a screw run through the posts into the rod.

George
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post #11 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 05:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cabinetman View Post
Here's a suggestion. You need three lengths of clear vertical grain Douglas Fir " x 2", by 65", or whatever. Glue them up together. Near the top, drill a through hole 1" at the center. Buy a length of wood closet rod, which will be 1". Cut it off for the length of the hanging rod you want. Glue in the rod to the hole...flush to the back.

Use a 2x12 for the base, and line up the standing column so the back of the column is flush with the back of the 2x. Drill a 1" hole in the center of the column end about 1" deep, and a matching 1" through hole in the 2x. Cut the closet rod about 3" long and glue in the rod into the hole of the column and into the 2x base.

You can dress up all the edges with a small chamfer.
Adding to the above would be to nail in the bottom of the base, 4 furniture glides...
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post #12 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 06:24 PM
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wood strength vs joint strength

Wood is very strong in vertical compression and will hold a lot of weight when loaded that way, However, wood in shear which is what the mortise and tenon joinery will have, needs to resist horizontal "compression" of the fibers and not "squish" as soft wood will eventually. The success of this project is to make a very strong joint where the wood itself resistes the shear and the glue just keeps the pieces in place and little strength of it own is required. Hardwood will better resist the cantilever type load of the extended arm and the long post in the base. Dowels, pins screws and other fasteners will eventually loosen on softwood.
I've repaired many a clothes pole/rack because the screws came loose, the dowels broke in the soft wood or the joints failed.
My opinion is if you are going to the trouble to make this project, don't cheap out on the material, go with a Oak, Cherry or other hardwood and make something that will endure. Make the joints properly and close fitting. That's what I would do, you can do as you choose. bill

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #13 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 06:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodnthings View Post
Wood is very strong in vertical compression and will hold a lot of weight when loaded that way, However, wood in shear which is what the mortise and tenon joinery will have, needs to resist horizontal "compression" of the fibers and not "squish" as soft wood will eventually. The success of this project is to make a very strong joint where the wood itself resistes the shear and the glue just keeps the pieces in place and little strength of it own is required. Hardwood will better resist the cantilever type load of the extended arm and the long post in the base. Dowels, pins screws and other fasteners will eventually loosen on softwood.
I've repaired many a clothes pole/rack because the screws came loose, the dowels broke in the soft wood or the joints failed.
My opinion is if you are going to the trouble to make this project, don't cheap out on the material, go with a Oak, Cherry or other hardwood and make something that will endure. Make the joints properly and close fitting. That's what I would do, you can do as you choose. bill
That's exactly why what I suggested will work. The method doesn't even need glue, as the fitting parts are full depth...a lot of mating surfaces. I've done displays like this that are still in use for over 25 years. They can be separated if need be...like for trade shows.





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post #14 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 08:21 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much for the suggestions, everyone!!!

i really appreciate all the input.

Unfortunately, I am a little bit limited when it comes to tool availability. I only have an electric drill, a hammer, a couple of screwdrivers, a few things like that. So I won't unfortunately be able to put a square whole in the base.

I would like to use hardwood, but around here I am having a hard time even finding any hardwood 2 X 2 or 2 X 3 posts. I would probably have to get a 2 X 6 and have them cut it lengthwise down the middle (I think thye call that a rip cut - what do I know...)

Since most of the shelving and other stuff we have is Pine / Doug fir that has been stained a medium-dark walnut color, can you suggest a hardwood that is inexpensive and will react to the stain similar to the way that the pine / doug fir will?

Thanks in advance.
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post #15 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 08:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wood4Brains View Post
Thanks so much for the suggestions, everyone!!!

i really appreciate all the input.

Unfortunately, I am a little bit limited when it comes to tool availability. I only have an electric drill, a hammer, a couple of screwdrivers, a few things like that. So I won't unfortunately be able to put a square whole in the base.

I would like to use hardwood, but around here I am having a hard time even finding any hardwood 2 X 2 or 2 X 3 posts. I would probably have to get a 2 X 6 and have them cut it lengthwise down the middle (I think thye call that a rip cut - what do I know...)

Since most of the shelving and other stuff we have is Pine / Doug fir that has been stained a medium-dark walnut color, can you suggest a hardwood that is inexpensive and will react to the stain similar to the way that the pine / doug fir will?

Thanks in advance.
What I suggested (post #9) uses all round holes, and the wood is common to the home centers...readily available.




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post #16 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 08:44 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks again, cabinetman;

Is there any advantage to using three 3/4 thick fir strips glued together for the vertical post as opposed to using a single 2 X 3 piece? Will it be stronger than a single 2 X 3 piece?

Oh, one more thing; what is the advantage of the furniture glides?

Thanks in advance.

Last edited by Wood4Brains; 07-25-2012 at 08:47 PM.
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post #17 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 08:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wood4Brains View Post
Thanks again, cabinetman;

Is there any advantage to using three 3/4 thick fir strips glued together for the vertical post as opposed to using a single 2 X 3 piece? Will it be stronger than a single 2 X 3 piece?

Oh, one more thing; what is the advantage of the furniture glides?

Thanks in advance.
Yes it will be. The joints should be facing the base (in line). The furniture glides will account for a base that may not be absolutely flat, or sitting on carpet.






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post #18 of 22 Old 07-25-2012, 09:23 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much for the explanation.

One more question:

Quote:
The joints should be facing the base (in line).
Just so I understand, that means that if I am looking at the base from the long end (so I am looking parallel to the grain in the base - the grain is pointing right at me), then I will see the two joints between the three vertical strips of fir, right? but if I am looking at it from the side (i.e., viewing across the grain of the base) then the joints will be hidden, right?

Thanks again.

Oh, and what glue should I use? Is gorilla glue ok (since I have some lying around). If I run out, what other glue could I use?
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post #19 of 22 Old 07-26-2012, 03:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wood4Brains View Post
Thanks so much for the explanation.

One more question:

Just so I understand, that means that if I am looking at the base from the long end (so I am looking parallel to the grain in the base - the grain is pointing right at me), then I will see the two joints between the three vertical strips of fir, right? but if I am looking at it from the side (i.e., viewing across the grain of the base) then the joints will be hidden, right?
That's right. Another way of seeing the orientation is that the hang rod hole is drilled in the center of the three laminated sections. Here's another idea as long as we are up at the hang rod. I would allow about 1" to 2" above the top of the hole. Just to "cap" it off so to speak so it doesn't look so plain, add a post cap...something like this.


Quote:
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Oh, and what glue should I use? Is gorilla glue ok (since I have some lying around). If I run out, what other glue could I use?
I wouldn't use Gorilla Glue. I think Titebond II or III would be a better glue...less of a mess, and an easier clean up.





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post #20 of 22 Old 07-26-2012, 01:06 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much for the suggestion about the cap. It would be nice to have something that sort of "echoes" the base.

And also thanks for the suggestion about chamfering the edges of the base and the tips about the right glue to use.

I was kind of dreading this project before, and now I am feeling more confident. If you had seen my previous woodwork, you would understand why; most of it looks like something Spanky and Alfalfa made ...
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