Mounting hardware for a curved rectangular wooden rail
November 13, 2021 8:51 AM   Subscribe

Need recommendations for a clamp/mounting bracket to mount ski button rack cups to a narrow wooden rail without having to put holes in the rail. Seems easy, and I'm probably overthinking it but can't seem to get the right bracket/mount.

I want to mount some ski buttons with a 1/4 inch hole to the curved rectangular rail of a old Stokke crib I am repurposing as a ski gear table. I could just drill a hole and mount them - but I'd rather not put holes in the rail - as I want to be able mount a number of buttons, and to adjust the placement depending on ski width / don't to ruin the rail with a whole bunch of holes. The rail is 1 inch wide by 2 and 1/4 inches tall.

I was originally thinking a square u-bolt around the rail (with some padding to prevent it digging into the wood) with a 1/4 inch thread would be perfect as I could just put the button on the top leg of the bolt after the connecting strap, and then add the nut....simple and easy.....but I can't for the life of me find a square u-bolt, with a 1/4 inch thread that will fit a narrow 1 inch wide rail. But maybe I'm not thinking about this right or not looking in the right places online? How would you mount these? The rail is curved but the curve is gentle enough I don't think it will cause much issue (buttons sit relatively flush against the rail if I just place the end up against it. I could potentially drill the 1/4 hole wider on the ski button, but the way it is injection molded may make it weaker/shatter if I do that I suspect

There are some c-clamps designed for desk lamp mounts/camera mounts with 1/4 inch mounting holes that might do the job, though seems a little clumsy and prone to slipping off with the weight of a pair of ski's, plus will look a little awkward (many of the clamps are quite bulky or have large clamp handles poking out etc).
posted by inflatablekiwi to Home & Garden (3 answers total)
Best answer: I can't for the life of me find a square u-bolt, with a 1/4 inch thread that will fit a narrow 1 inch wide rail.

Maybe you could build them yourself, using small blocks of softwood or beech ply top and bottom (being no harder than your rails, they shouldn't dig in, especially if you chamfer their edges) with a shallow channel cut into each to locate it on the rail, and holes drilled either side of the channel to accept bolts, spaced maybe 3mm off the rail to avoid scratching it. Making these should be not much more work than making padding for actual U-bolts. If you used coach bolts pressed into the bottom block from underneath, you could use wingnuts and flat washers to secure the ski cup and top block for tool-free adjustability.
posted by flabdablet at 9:05 AM on November 13, 2021 [1 favorite]

Best answer: The instructions say you only need 3/4" of backerboard. You could bend a piece of 3/4" x 1" pine or hemlock square moulding to that radius no problem. Mount the backerboard to the crib with larger square ubolts (threads pointing in). Then mount the clips on the backerboard. Paint the backer to match either the frame or the baskets.

I'd also chamfer the ends and sand the edges of the backer..
posted by Mitheral at 11:08 AM on November 13, 2021 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: Thinks for the encouragement to just make some! I ended up making a few out of oak pieces I had plus some old weather stripping. They are very sturdy even for our biggest skis. Don’t think they turned out too bad - still need to sand them down to get rid of all the rough edges.
posted by inflatablekiwi at 3:37 PM on November 13, 2021 [2 favorites]

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