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What is considered the strongest knockdown joint when putting together a loft bed? I'd like to build a very sturdy and kid resistant loft bed for my son. If anyone knows of a really nice plan I can adapt please let me know that as well.

  • There is currently a couple of points about this question that will get it closed. 1. WW.SE is not a source of plans. You are welcome to show us a specific one that you have questions about though. 2. There wont be a best joint but there are some that should all be as appropriate. We would need to know more about your plan though (see point 1). – Matt Sep 6 '15 at 0:27
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    Frankly, for a loft I'm not sure knockdown would give you enough rigidity. I'd be inclined to vote for lag screws and a good socket wrench to drive and remove 'em...? – keshlam Sep 6 '15 at 3:16
  • You might find my Answer to this previous Question useful as a starting point. It lists many of the available knockdown fastener types, with illustrations. – Graphus supports Monica Sep 7 '15 at 7:47
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    If I was to trust a screw with my kid's health and life in such a build, it would have to be a very long screw, such as won't fit if you use a KD (as the screw can't be longer than the board's thickness). Remember that a loft bed has a long leverage, which amplifies the force acting on those poor little screws. If I'd use screws at all, they'd have to be at least something like 10x240mm going through the pillar into the board, before I'd feel good. But why use screws if you can tenon the board rock-solid into the post? With a ~30cm board, that's a tenon which will support a truck if need be. – Damon Sep 7 '15 at 21:08
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    Damon's got an interesting point. A drawbored pegged tenon is traditional, nearly bombproof, and can be disassembled and reassembled if necessary. Ditto for wedged tusk tenons. Whether either is appropriate will depend on the design. – keshlam Sep 8 '15 at 21:38
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I'm not sure if this would apply to your design but I have found these types of fasteners very useful when making a take-down bed frame. They hold very well and provide an easy method for take-down.

Fastener

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    These fasteners are awesome if they are high quality. Ex. We have 60 year old bunk beds that use this type of fastener. The beds have been through 5 sets of brothers and countless moves. Easy to assemble/disassemble, strong and quiet (compared to aluminum bed frames we've used). A good choice if you are planning to move or reconfigure the bed. – joel Dec 7 '15 at 16:32
  • I agree, quality is key. I have a bed frame that uses these and it made moving it into a new house so easy. I didn't have a remove a single screw. It doesn't wobble or shake when put together either. – Programmer Dec 7 '15 at 16:35
  • @Programmer Can these be used both vertically and horizontally? – Daniel Jan 26 at 10:40
  • @Daniel I believe they are meant to only be used in a vertical position. Gravity creates the downward force that actually secures the male part to the female part. They can be easily disassembled by lifting upwards. – Programmer Feb 4 at 18:39
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I built my daughter a loft bed. I used 4x4 posts for the corner posts and cut out dados for 2x4s to sit in connect everything. To hold the 2x4 into the dado I drilled holes and used lag bolts with washers.

On my design I put 2 2x4s on each end and 2 2x4s on one side but only 1 2x4 on the other so she can use the space under the bed.

She's 13 and I purposely overbuilt the thing so a couple of kids or her and a parent could safely be up there. It works well.

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Lag bolts would probably be easiest and are typically used on college dorm type loft beds. Ultimately, it depends on your design and the spans and weights you need to accommodate.

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