How can I attach wood to concrete in this bench?

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  • That's gonna be a heavy bench! – DA01 Nov 7 '13 at 22:08
  1. Bolts, concrete fixing bolts, recessed, optionally plugged.
  2. Strong glue
  3. All the above

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  • Those will work but likely overkill for this. I think TapCon screws would be just fine. – DA01 Nov 7 '13 at 22:08

Bolts going into a slieve like RedGrittyBrick suggested is the best answer for appearance and strength. Another option for speed and simplicity are Tapcon screws:

Tapcon screws

No affiliation, and no direct experience, I'm just aware of the existence of this product.

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  • Buildex makes a tapered head (Philips flat head) that will counter-sink flush with the wood surface. Here are the available sizes : tapcon.com/TapconConcreteanchorsAvailableSizes.html – HerrBag Nov 7 '13 at 17:42
  • I've used these before, they are ridiculously strong. – Bryan Boettcher Nov 7 '13 at 18:46
  • I have extremely variable results with Tapcons, at least in old concrete. They may work a bit more predictably in fresh (not terribly strong yet) concrete - I don't know. I thought they were a great idea until I actually used them. I have a bunch of stripped ones (rather than cut themselves a thread into the concrete, the thread on the screw gave up), and a few that have broken rather than drive in (leaving a messy stub to deal with.) – Ecnerwal Dec 17 '13 at 19:44

I'll second BMitch's TapCon screws. They work great.

If you want to have some fun, you could also go with a powder actuated hammer:

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It's essentially a gun that will shoot a nail into the concrete. Works great. Would be super-fast (no pre-drilling). But likely the least accurate option. You'd also be left with the nail heads/washers to deal with.

Style/aesthetic-wise, however, I'd probably consider some epoxy options. I'd epoxy a washer or nut to the underside of the wood (to give it a spacer between the concrete to avoid wicking water) and then epoxy that to the concrete.

A final thought...don't permanently attach it at all. Instead create 3 or 4 sleepers that would run under and perpendicular to the slats. Have the sleepers attached at the corner. Then attach the slats to that. The entire thing could then just sit on top of the concrete without needing any attachment hardware at all. Bonus is that if/when the wood ever becomes weathered to much, it'll be super easy to replace.

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  • I love my ramset, but didn't recommend it since you can't control the nail depth easily, and are left with little orange washers to pick out. +1 for a spacer or sleepers, wood directly against the concrete will rot much quicker and trap dirt/debris. – BMitch Nov 7 '13 at 22:21

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