I have a single piece set of coat hooks to install on the wall. By single piece I mean that they are 6 double hooks all attached to a single piece of metal as backing.

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(source: pbimgs.com)

There are 3 holes in the backing metal and they don't line up with the studs - surprise surprise.

My current plan is to get a batten (or furring strip I believe it's called in the US) that is wide enough to hit the 3 studs, paint it nicely and screw the hooks into that.

My questions are:

  • how thick should the batten be?
  • how long should the screws be to ensure that the hooks can take the weight of the metal and a pile of coats, etc?

Is there a standard somewhere or some way of calculating this to set my partner's mind at rest (she's rather worried that the hooks will not take the weight and fall off the wall).

I should note that I'm aware that there is AC along one of the studs. My stud find shows it and there is a central communications box on the backside of this wall. I really don't want to hit any of that wiring...

3 Answers 3


I would think that if you used a nice hardwood for the wood strip that it can work well if it is 0.75 inch in thickness. Attach it to the studs with screws that are 2.5 inches long. Then use 0.75 inch screws to mount the hanger bracket to the hardwood board. Remember to drill proper type pilot holes for the screws rather than just trying to force the screws in without pre-drilled holes. It will be MUCH stronger if installed this way.

The hardwood such as oak or birch is recommended because it will hold the screws much more firmly than a soft pine board can. Would a pine board be strong enough and hold the screws OK for this application? -- Probably.


I believe the middle screw goes into the stud and holds up the rack. The outer two screws can go in the dry wall and help keep it stabilized. This was suggested to me by a friend. I haven't tried it yet but it makes sense.


Monkey hooks are great.

Monkey hooks

Modify the hook using wire snippers. It leaves a tiny hole in the wall and they hold up to 50 pounds. Very very solid for heavy things. I trust these much more than screw+anchor - if I can get these to work for the application. They wont work for everything (like blind housing that has to screw in) but for anything to "hang" they work.

  • Hmmm... I've never used them but they look like they'd make the coat hooks rather wobbly - no?
    – Sarge
    May 28, 2013 at 19:33
  • If you only have one then they are wobbly. For something like in your picture I would put three and I would bend the "v" closer to the wall. I have 2 of these hanging a very large picture in my house and it it set in stone unless you push straight up on it.
    – DMoore
    May 28, 2013 at 20:52
  • 2
    Sorry, DMoore, I'm not liking your solution for this application, the minimal bearing area on plaster or drywall and lack of solid anchoring leaves me feeling uneasy. @Sarge - can you simply drill another hole(s) where the studs fall? One good screw into two different studs would be adequate.
    – bcworkz
    May 28, 2013 at 22:40
  • @bcworkz Yes - I'm not sure I explained my idea well enough. The point of proposing a wooden batten behind the hooks is to hit the studs. I can screw the batten onto the studs; then the hooks onto the batten. My question is the thickness of the batten and the length of the screws.
    – Sarge
    May 28, 2013 at 22:59
  • 1
    @jay613 - we have a coat rack almost exact like that with 2 monkey hooks. The back of the coat rack has 2 zigzag picture frame type holders. I simply smashed the tip into the was so there was little gap. Slide coat rack on and it barely jiggles if you try. And it can hold a ton more weight than anything else without me having to mud when I am done using the coat rack. If you have sold houses you know the importance of small holes when hanging. It isn't the mudding it is match the paint too.
    – DMoore
    Aug 25, 2022 at 2:35

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