Hex Drive Socket Cap Bolts for outdoor project

jgt1942

jgt
User
I'm in the process of restoring a very old outdoor table (picnic type) for my son. The table was originally built by my father about 50 years ago. I was surprised by how good the condition of the wood was, but it did show signs of age. It was well weathered and cracked on the weathered side.

I completely disassembled the table and ran all boards through my planner. Then I decided to epoxy all sides of each board (I'm using Total Boat Table Top epoxy), this has been very time-consuming. I plan to coat the top and sides of each board with TotalBoat Halcyon varnish to slow the UV damage. I'm open to suggestions.

Originally the boards were nailed together, I will be using outdoor Torx head screws when I reassemble. Also I will be predrilling before putting the screws in.

A few of the boards were fastened together using 1/4" bolts, about 3 1/2" long. I'd like to use Hex Drive Socket Cap Bolts or similar. The big question is "Does anybody make them for outdoor use"?

When completed the table will sit outside in the direct sunlight. We live in Oak Island thus the salt air, sun, and rain will be a challenge.

One obvious question is "Why not just build a new table using pressure-treated wood or Red wood"? I did as my son but he wanted something that Granddad built. He has fond memories of using the table when he was much younger and visited Granddad and Grandma

Since starting the project I have discovered better epoxy but I already have the Total Boat and will stay with it.
 

95vette

Jim
User
Hello, Look up stainless steel bolts in the pattern you want, Amazon has lots of stainless, and a good hardware store near will have them also.
 

Craptastic

Matt
Senior User
Try McMaster Carr, or Fastenal
Fastenal is probably your best bet for a question on bolts. Slightly more expensive than the big boxes but usually have better expertise to answer questions. And they are all over the place for the most part.
 

bob vaughan

Bob Vaughan
Senior User
Bronze or brass may be worth considering as an alternative to stainless. Stainless is weaker than regular steel fasteners of the same size.
 

Gotcha6

Dennis
Staff member
Corporate Member
Bronze or brass may be worth considering as an alternative to stainless. Stainless is weaker than regular steel fasteners of the same size.
A word to the wise on SS bolts: DON'T use an impact driver. Tighten by hand or with a cordless drill with the clutch set to a light setting or it will strip the head. DAMHIKT. I found some old SS 3" wood screws in my shop that were #2 square head from an old project and tried to use them. They ended up in the trash.....
YMMv on machine bolts but the principal is the same and you can easily twist one in two as suggested.
 

blackhawk

Brad
Corporate Member
Either Boltdepot.com or McMaster-Carr will have what you want. McMaster has the best website for drilling down to the part you need.
 

Gofor

Mark
Corporate Member
Bronze or brass may be worth considering as an alternative to stainless. Stainless is weaker than regular steel fasteners of the same size.
Also, although "stainless" will resist corrosion better than regular steel, it may disappoint you with the high salt environment. Chlorides tend to break down the passivation coating that stainless uses to protect itself. Bronze will fair better than brass.
 

Hmerkle

Board of Directors, Development Director
Hank
Corporate Member
@jgt1942
I woudl not go for brass fasteners, the stainless should work well for you unless they will come in contact with a steel bracket or something like that.
If it is just in wood, the stainless will work well.

I searched in Wilmington and found: Industrial Hardware & Marine
 

jgt1942

jgt
User
I just looked at Sex bolts, Socket button head, Stainless steel 18-8 - Bolt Depot. They refer to the barrel nut as SEX bolts, They offer "Stainless steel 18-8" which is the same as 305, I want to use grade 316, this is considered marine grade

Hank, thanks for the link to a more local store. I will give them a call tomorrow.

I did check with the local Oak Island Hardware store. They did not have stainless steel barrel (sex) bolts and the stainless steel deck screws did not specify what the grade was and the salesperson did not know for sure.

Tomorrow I will check with the ACE hardware in Southport

 

Gotcha6

Dennis
Staff member
Corporate Member
I just looked at Sex bolts, Socket button head, Stainless steel 18-8 - Bolt Depot. They refer to the barrel nut as SEX bolts, They offer "Stainless steel 18-8" which is the same as 305, I want to use grade 316, this is considered marine grade

Hank, thanks for the link to a more local store. I will give them a call tomorrow.

I did check with the local Oak Island Hardware store. They did not have stainless steel barrel (sex) bolts and the stainless steel deck screws did not specify what the grade was and the salesperson did not know for sure.

Tomorrow I will check with the ACE hardware in Southport

I always learn something here. Heretofore I had only seen the term 'sex bolts' used for the pairs of bolts - one threaded male and one threaded female - used to install toilet partitions. Next time you're in a public toilet, look at the bolts in the brackets used to attach the panels to the wall or to the pilasters. That's them.
 

wbarnes

Will
Corporate Member
I worked at Fastenal a couple years ago while I was in college. If you can’t find it anywhere else locally check them out. They will either have it or can get it within a couple days.
 

Oka

Board of Directors, Vice President
Casey
Staff member
Corporate Member
West Marine ... great place to get bolts/screws/nuts .............however, not cheap
 

jgt1942

jgt
User
It seems that most of my woodworking projects result in a lot of learning (yea) and research (another yea?) This project has not been a disappointment in this area.

At my local Oak Island Hardware they have a bunch of "Stainless Steel". The sales person attempted to find the grade but none of the boxes stated what the grade was. After doing more research last night I surmised that the stainless steel that they had was 305 and NOT what I wanted, I want 316 which is often referred to as marine grade.

I just called the Ace hardware in Southport, they do NOT have grade 316 stainless.

Last night via the internet I checked with Home Depot and Lowes. At Home Depot I found a few different brands of 316 in deck screws. The price, of course, is much higher than stainless 305. Home Depot had a better selection (see Search Results for Stainless Steel 316 deck screws at The Home Depot).

Pricing often does not make sense, for example, 2-3/8 in. 316 Stainless Steel Trimhead Deck Screw (700-Count) is $126 ($0.18 per screw) the same mfg 2-3/8 in. 316 Stainless Steel Trimhead Deck Screw (1750-Count), same screw is $415 ($0.24 per screw). Normally the larger the quantity the less the cost per item. oh well....

While HD has the grade 316 deck screws they DO NOT have grade 316 nuts, washers, or bolts (they have grade 305. Looking online I have not found a source for small quantities
 

jgt1942

jgt
User
OK I've given up on the barrel (sex) nuts and bolts. I went to boltdepot.com and ended up using the Chat, Chris was SUPER helpful.
I will order the 316 deck screws from HD, 2-3/8 in. 316 Stainless Steel Trimhead Deck Screw (700-Count) for $126

Thanks for all the help. I've not talled the total cost for the project but I'm somewhere between $200 and $300 (I think). I will talley the total (maybe) just to see what the cost is. I think my grandson also wants a similar table. "IF" I make him one I will use the redwood I have and not apply the epoxy.
 

Gotcha6

Dennis
Staff member
Corporate Member
Our primary lumber supplier used to sell their nail by the pound out of a bin. But they kept the stainless steel finish nails in another location lest someone get them by mistake. IIRC the price was grater by a factor of 10...
 

Hmerkle

Board of Directors, Development Director
Hank
Corporate Member
I wish I would have known you were looking at the different Stainless grades.
Normally I would say you are find with the 18-8 stainless (300 grade -304, 305 etc.)

BUT since you are on the coast and might see salt corrosion - you may want to upgrade to 316 as it seems you have done.

My suggestion - run a test - buy some of the 305 and some of the 316 and put them into the wood as you would for your outdoor furniture and put them (out back somewhere) to see in months or after a year what impact your enviroment has on them, you might be surprised...
 

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