loft bed joints - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 5 Old 10-26-2015, 02:53 PM Thread Starter
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loft bed joints

I'm going to be building a loft bed for my girlfriend's son, and was looking for some help for the joints where the main rails meet the corner post. I'm basically thinking of using a combination of mortise & tenon with bed bolts. But because I'd like to have the 2x6 rails on the inside of the post, the tenons will only be 1/2" deep. You can see in the pictures what I'm getting at.

My questions are:

Will this size tenon be enough with the two bed bolts holding it in place?

Are two bed bolts overkill, or can I get away with one at each joint?

I'm planning on just using pocket screws with grk structural screws, or something like the Kreg HD, for basically all the other joints. I think this should be fine for the lower bracing rails, but maybe I should do the same mortise/tenon/bed bolt joint for that joint as well?

Could I just use bed hardware (such as these ) instead?

Safety and durability is the most important issue of course, but cost is important too.

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post #2 of 5 Old 10-26-2015, 08:41 PM
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I like the hardware from Rockler

Making the mortises and all would be a lot of work. For your application it would be more expedient to use the hardware..... just my opinion.

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 #3 of 5 Old 10-26-2015, 10:50 PM
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You didn't mention what material would be used for the project. Hardwood, or regular lumber-yard construction lumber? I'd recommend moving the tenons to the center of the uprights, a 1/2" X 1/2" remaining corner material doesn't have much strength. I'd go with total of four bedbolts per corner, and do the same on the lower connecting rails as well. And make sure that the rails seat on the shoulders of the tenon rather than on the end. I wouldn't trust pocket screws for this application.
What is the overall height of the bed? Without diagonal bracing, and with no lower connecting rail on the front side, I doubt that you're going to have much stability. And on the front, because of the step-through for access from the ladder, there's only 1 connecting rail between the two end posts, putting considerable strain on the one joint. Two youngsters rough-housing on the bed are going to put stress on all the joints.
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post #4 of 5 Old 10-27-2015, 12:58 AM
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1/2 seems awfully shallow for a tenon. Have you considered using dowels instead? Then you could stagger them in the corner and go for more depth

I need cheaper hobby
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post #5 of 5 Old 10-31-2015, 04:14 PM
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I have used this hardware in the past for bed rails. All you really need to do is make some very shallow (1/8") mortises and then deepen the female side to accept the male side of the hardware. If the plate is mounted flush to the post/rails, this hardware locks in place and won't be going anywhere. The good part is you can knock it down pretty easily if you need to move it.
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