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  1. #106
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    Default Re-inventing the Wheel

    Wood moves, expands and contracts as moisture levels change, whether it is a process of drying out or the humidity levels in the air. The need to ensure that future adjustment - when required - would be easy, has motivated me to redo the end cap bolts for a third time. There will be no fourth time.

    The information supplied by WW pointed me in this direction. I have incorporated these features, plus added a design feature of my own (although no doubt this is not new - is there anything "new"? ... probably just re-inventing the wheel).

    The probability is that, over time, the bolt and nut will weld themselves together through rust. Tightening the connection will be difficult unless the nut can be immobilised. One way is to remove enough waste to slide in a wrench or spanner. Another is to immobilise the nut from the outset ...

    WW suggested a square nut. However, while it has its advantages over the old nut, a square nut still requires spanner to immobilise it. So I have made a elongated rectangular nut, where the shaft runs the length of the bolt hole (and so is restrained by the hole, per se).

    Here are the three methods I had used. From the left ... First I tried coach bolts. These were removed as I did not trust their holding ability in end grain. In the middle is the recently removed nut-and-bolt connection. Finally, on the right, is the new system, a bolt and elongated rectangular nut.



    The nut plate was made from 1/4" thick x 1" wide O1 steel. Mike Wenzloff gave me an 18" length a few years ago. Nice to add a connection to a friend.

    The second feature was the tapered ends to the bolt. Having used them this way now I can confirm that this makes connecting nut and bolt a much easier job.



    Here is the set up ...



    And here are the end cap bolts installed ...



    Tightening now can be done completely from the end cap alone.

    Regards from Perth

    Derek
    Visit www.inthewoodshop.com for tutorials on constructing handtools, many handtool reviews, and my trials and tribulations with furniture builds.

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  3. #107
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    In trying to learn a little about everything,
    you become masters of nothing.

  4. #108
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    That's a nice solution Derek. My solution was using tapped barrels and reversing the bolts so there was no metal visible.

    It looks like the end of the bolts hit the timber when tightened - is that the case or did you drill a relief hole? I found I needed to drill a little further then expected once the bolts were tightened.


  5. #109
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    Good stuff, Derek. I'll definitely use this idea if I ever make another bench. I'd be surprised if you need to tighten them more than once, given your climate, but you may want to dismantle the end cap for some reason, down the track, & it's comforting to know that will be easy. You probably didn't need the spring washer, btw - they prevent loosening under vibration, which shouldn't be too much of a problem on a bench used mainly for hand-tools....

    Cheers,
    IW

  6. #110
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    Quote Originally Posted by FRB Design View Post
    I did. Benchcrafted make similar connectors as well.

    I decided when starting out on this bench, where possible, I wanted to make it all. The end vise is the only exception and was purchased because making an equivalent was too difficult.

    Regards from Perth

    Derek
    Visit www.inthewoodshop.com for tutorials on constructing handtools, many handtool reviews, and my trials and tribulations with furniture builds.

  7. #111
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    Quote Originally Posted by Groggy View Post
    ... It looks like the end of the bolts hit the timber when tightened - is that the case or did you drill a relief hole? I found I needed to drill a little further then expected once the bolts were tightened...
    Hi Greg

    There is at least 1" of space beyond each bolt. If you look at picture #3 above you can see that the bolt extends past the hole.

    Regards from Perth

    Derek
    Visit www.inthewoodshop.com for tutorials on constructing handtools, many handtool reviews, and my trials and tribulations with furniture builds.

  8. #112
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    Quote Originally Posted by IanW View Post
    ..I'd be surprised if you need to tighten them more than once, given your climate, ...
    I hope so Ian. Anyway, I am counting on having it serviced annually by you. It is too heavy to lug on a plane, so you will have to make a house call

    Regards from Perth

    Derek
    Visit www.inthewoodshop.com for tutorials on constructing handtools, many handtool reviews, and my trials and tribulations with furniture builds.

  9. #113
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    Quote Originally Posted by derekcohen View Post
    WW suggested a square nut. However, while it has its advantages over the old nut, a square nut still requires spanner to immobilise it.
    You've totally missed the point Derek; square nuts do not require a spanner to prevent them rotating like hex nuts do when you tighten the bolts (assuming you make the nut recesses approximately the same dimensions as the nuts). Maybe you have some ulterior motive to weigh down that end of your bench!

    Even if you were installing the bolts and nuts with the bench the right way up, a pencil would stop the nut falling out of the recess until you got the bolt started. Putting a really good point on the bolts (like the ones in the image I posted above) will make aligning the bolt and nut easier again.
    .
    I know you believe you understand what you think I wrote, but I'm not sure you realize that what you just read is not what I meant.


    Regards, Woodwould.

  10. #114
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    Quote:
    Originally Posted by derekcohen
    WW suggested a square nut. However, while it has its advantages over the old nut, a square nut still requires spanner to immobilise it.
    You've totally missed the point Derek; square nuts do not require a spanner to prevent them rotating like hex nuts do when you tighten the bolts (assuming you make the nut recesses approximately the same dimensions as the nuts). Maybe you have some ulterior motive to weigh down that end of your bench!

    Even if you were installing the bolts and nuts with the bench the right way up, a pencil would stop the nut falling out of the recess until you got the bolt started. Putting a really good point on the bolts (like the ones in the image I posted above) will make aligning the bolt and nut easier again.
    Why so negative?

    Firstly, I would disagree about a square nut not needing a spanner when it is stuck to the bolt and needing to be tightened. How would you stop the bolt spinning? The oak end grain is not hard enough to restrain the nut on its own. I am trying to avoid having to poke something up the side to jam it in a fixed position.

    Secondly, the point on the bolt is enough to do the job. It does not need any more taper than I gave it. It worked as it was needed to do.

    Regards from Perth

    Derek
    Visit www.inthewoodshop.com for tutorials on constructing handtools, many handtool reviews, and my trials and tribulations with furniture builds.

  11. #115
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    Quote Originally Posted by derekcohen View Post
    Why so negative?
    Not negativity at all, just friendly advice gleaned from personal experiences and perhaps tinged with not a little dismay.

    Quote Originally Posted by derekcohen View Post
    Firstly, I would disagree about a square nut not needing a spanner when it is stuck to the bolt and needing to be tightened. How would you stop the bolt spinning? The oak end grain is not hard enough to restrain the nut on its own.
    It's not the end grain that prevents the nut turning! As I mentioned above, I have had recourse to use a rattle gun to undo seized bed bolts from their captive square nuts... which were in pine side rails.

    I've never encountered any "soft" English Oak; are you sure what you have isn't American White Oak? It tends to be a bit mushy. What did you pay for the oak? Either way, it will offer more than enough resistance to the torque required to release a well rusted 3/8" bolt in a 1" x 1" square nut.
    .
    I know you believe you understand what you think I wrote, but I'm not sure you realize that what you just read is not what I meant.


    Regards, Woodwould.

  12. #116
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    Whoa folks, let's not get into a raging argument over the shape of a square nut! The side simply needs to be long enough that the maximum force likely to be generated at the corner is less than that which will cause catastrophic failure of the wood fibres. A well-fitted nut 30mm or so square would be unlikely to spin in any decent hardwood I know.
    But the elongated design is a useful touch. Having had to assemble a few of these things, sometimes under awkward conditions, ANYTHING that makes assembly a bit easier is ok in my book. If you are making your own nuts, it's no more work making them oblong or square, so as I said, I'll be 'borrowing' the idea in future........

    I still prefer barrel nuts for stretchers because of their neatness, but I struggle to drill the two holes that intersect perfectly - has anyone got a simple solution to this problem? Fortunately, my home-made barrel nuts are often a tiny bit off-centre, so when inserted the right way round, they align ok, but I suspect someone down the track is going to curse me in absentia.

    Cheers,
    IW

  13. #117
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    Thank you for being so sensible Ian.

    At the end of the day these elongated nuts are easy to install and will bring piece of mind for possible later tightenings.

    Incidentally, a reader wrote to me to say that this design is used in the motor trade: "nuts on certain suspension components can be difficult to access with a wrench. several manufacturers are using nuts with a "tail" on them to facilitate removal and installation. its an excellent innovation. I never thought to use it on a workbench".

    If this idea makes life easier for others then I am happy.

    Regards from Perth

    Derek
    Visit www.inthewoodshop.com for tutorials on constructing handtools, many handtool reviews, and my trials and tribulations with furniture builds.

  14. #118
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    Quote Originally Posted by derekcohen View Post
    Incidentally, a reader wrote to me to say that this design is used in the motor trade: "nuts on certain suspension components can be difficult to access with a wrench. several manufacturers are using nuts with a "tail" on them to facilitate removal and installation. its an excellent innovation. I never thought to use it on a workbench".

    If this idea makes life easier for others then I am happy.
    The motor trade will be eternally indebted to you Derek!

    Now that you mention it, I recall cars have used loose, square captive nuts for suspension mounts, body panel attachments etc. for decades.
    .
    I know you believe you understand what you think I wrote, but I'm not sure you realize that what you just read is not what I meant.


    Regards, Woodwould.

  15. #119
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woodwould View Post
    Now that you mention it, I recall cars have used loose, square captive nuts for suspension mounts, body panel attachments etc. for decades.
    Now that you mention it, the principle goes back even further than 'decades', WW. I recall similar things on farm implements, for bits that needed regular attention. And that was more than 1/2 a century ago, already! .

    'S funny how we often think of the obvious only after someone else brings it to our attention, or some clever bloke dreams it up. I had made plenty of barrel nuts, but it hadn't even occurred to me to make large square ones, and solve both the alignment problem and the turning problem in one swoop. Guess I'm not a vey good lateral thinker.....

    Cheers, (from Brissy where it's hot & sultry & I'm finding excuses to lurk indoors instead of tackling the grass, which is growing faster than I can cut it.....)
    IW

  16. #120
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    Quote Originally Posted by IanW View Post
    Now that you mention it, the principle goes back even further than 'decades', WW. I recall similar things on farm implements, for bits that needed regular attention. And that was more than 1/2 a century ago, already! .

    'S funny how we often think of the obvious only after someone else brings it to our attention, or some clever bloke dreams it up. I had made plenty of barrel nuts, but it hadn't even occurred to me to make large square ones, and solve both the alignment problem and the turning problem in one swoop. Guess I'm not a vey good lateral thinker.....

    Cheers, (from Brissy where it's hot & sultry & I'm finding excuses to lurk indoors instead of tackling the grass, which is growing faster than I can cut it.....)
    Actually, now that you mention farm implements, We used to have a huge red lead-painted thresher that was made out of pine and it was held together in places with captive square nuts.
    .
    I know you believe you understand what you think I wrote, but I'm not sure you realize that what you just read is not what I meant.


    Regards, Woodwould.

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