Reply by harum

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Posted on lumber thickness for bench

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377 posts in 2125 days

#1 posted 08-14-2018 03:30 PM

... As long as your stretchers are well attached, the loose tenons to attach the legs to the seat will be plenty strong but if you want a little extra strength, you could drill a hole through the tenon for a dowel after you assemble the joint.

- Lazyman

Thanks! Yes, haven’t thought about static load vs. real person plopping down, shifting weight, leaning back and forth, etc.

Thinking out loud… the 1/4” outside of 1/2” tenon should not receive much stress, unless the bench is tilted on its front (or back) legs. Rather, almost all stress will be applied in the perpendicular direction pulling the legs to the sides and up—this is what thicker tenons, wider legs, and stretchers should take care of. Sounds like the only benefit of going from 1” to 1-1/2” thickness will be only thicker outsides of tenons, 1/2” vs. 1/4”, which is, however, really important in dealing with the stress from “rocking”.

-- "If you're not counting the ripples when throwing pebbles in the water, you're wasting your time."

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