I get a lot of questions about new bed bolts and old beds. In my quest to improve the blog I am going to post some e-mail questions I get on a regular post along with the answers. For the record, I didn’t think of this, it was suggested to me by Eric Saperstein of Artisans of the Valley
I recently ordered 8 ea. H-73 bed bolts (3/8″ diameter) bed bolts for our 4 poster antique bed to replace the original bolts. Unfortunately, the original bolts appear to be 7/16″, or at least have a thread count of 14/in. Do you also stock 7/16″ in. bolts?
We do not make 14TPI bolts or 7/16″ bolts. It is more likely that the old bolts had a different thread count. The 3/8″ diameter is pretty standard for old beds-even as couple hundred year old beds. There are a few things to consider here:
1. You can try http://www.ballandball-us.com. They may make, or be able to make, a 14TPI bolt.
2. Even a bolt with the correct thread count might not work. Old bolts and the nuts embedded in the rails are often worn out together so any new bolt will not thread properly. If this is the case you will need to remove the old nuts and put new ones in. There will be plugs on the inside of each rail. They can be tricky to remove but once you do it should be pretty straightforward to take the old ones out and put new ones in.