Methods for attaching rails to posts

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Old 09-12-08, 08:46 PM
J
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Methods for attaching rails to posts

I have just built a tigerwood deck. I had planned on using cedar for the railing as I didn't want to spend the money on more tigerwood. I had planned on using pre-notched posts. I so love the look of the tigerwood now that it is installed that I decided to go for a matching railing. Initially I figured I would notch the posts for the 2x4's to attach. The wood is so hard, however, that I am wondering if I can avoid all the chiseling.

I am using 4x4 posts, with 2x4's spanning. I will be using metal tubular baulsters. The posts will protrude, and I will be using glass post caps.

One thing I don't like about notching is that the 2x4's won't be centered in the posts. I am currently thinking about either:

A) Attaching with angle brackets on bottom, and a toe screw in the top.

-or-

B) using pocket screws to attach to the post. The problem here is that I can't easily plug the pocket hole (I have plugs, but not from tigerwood). It is fine for the underside, but I would want to attach on the top as well, and that would be visible.

Any suggestions?

Thanks!
~john
 
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Old 09-13-08, 05:28 PM
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Trying to draw a picture in my old brain, and the only thing I can come up with, if it were me, I would mortise the newel posts and tenon the rails to fit in them. Either that or use a router and route dadoes where they will meet on the 4x4 edge, countersink screws into the cedar and the newel posts.
 
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Old 09-13-08, 08:13 PM
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I found this picture on a web site:



I had been planning on having the 2x4's upright (in "portrait" orientation). Not sure why. I think I like this way better with the 2x4's flat. It occurs to be that I can just notch the posts (with either a circular saw or router (probably use the saw to cut the perimeter, and clean out with a router) all the way across, and set the 2X4 into the notch. The cut would be visible from the side, but I have no experience doing a mortise and tenon, and don't really know where to start.

Does this seem like a valid soution?
 
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Old 09-14-08, 07:25 PM
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I don't think seeing the mortise on the side would be too bad.
 
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