OT: Concrete fasteners?

I need to attach some items to a concrete wall such as a workbench and some shelves. Any suggestions on a quick and reasonably strong method? I'd rather not drill into the concrete if I don't have to because of the time it will take.

Thanks in advance,


Reply to
Dave Berryhill
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Use epoxy; it goes up quick and will fall down quicker.

Reply to
Nick Hull

If you don't want to drill, are you thinking of construction adhesive? The only positive method I know of is some sort of embedded anchor. Plastic sleeves for light stuff, lead sleeve anchors for heavy stuff. If you're planning on putting anything heavy on that wall, you'd better rethink drilling. It really doesn't take that much time if you've got the drill for it. Your other alternative is freestanding shelves and a bench with legs.


Reply to
Stan Schaefer

There are some 2x4 runners that are already attached to the walls and they look like they've been nailed to the concrete. They seem pretty sturdy but I haven't really tested them yet except to pull on them a few times.. I guess I'll go with drilling and using some expanding fasteners after all.



Reply to
Dave Berryhill

Use Tapcon fasteners instead. Just drill the proper clearance hole and attach your items with Tapcon screws. It is simple and quick (especially after you do a couple). They're available at most Hardware and Home Supply stores.

Reply to
Peter DiVergilio

Tapcons.......... just about any hardware store will have them ,you can even get a kit that comes with the drill bit you'll need. easy to install and they work very well.


Reply to

A few years back, the fellow standing next to me at the hardware supply counter got a call from (apparently) his boss on his cell phone, which started like this, "Yea, hi B____, you got my message? Well, the good thing was, nobody was killed when the shelves came off the wall, and everybody's out and we're cleaning it up now!"

Thank God (my choice of deity) that I wasn't the person on either end of that conversation!

The continuing conversation seemed to imply that the shelves were "lightweight" shelves for office supplies, the anchors pulled out of the wall, and some people were in the way when it collapsed. Not a pleasant conversation to overhear, and it has haunted me since. After that, I use the biggest anchors I can find when I put up shelves.

Rexarino I have enough spam, thank you! No need to send more.

Reply to

Dave, think about renting a 'powder-actuated' 'stud gun' which can fire hardened nails right into poured concrete. I've done whole basements, putting 2x4's on side on the walls, insulation, wallboard etc etc. And some large workbenches. Nothing ever moved. And it's FAST. I bought one at the BORG about 5 years ago for $25 on sale.. Use it once in a while. It's the type you hit with a big hammer and sets the blank cartridge off.

Reply to
Terry King

Yep! I've got one by HILTI which uses .25 cal blanks as power sources. Pistol grip and trigger -- a lot more convenient than the hammer actuated ones.

There are even ones which leave you with a 1/4-20 stud sticking out of the wall. I've used some of these to anchor a rather shallow (front-to-back_ workbench to the cinderblocks behind it.

If you're driving though wood into concrete, get some of the steel disks (fake quarters) to put on top of the wood, so you don't loose the head down inside some split wood. :-)

Yep -- Remington makes one with .22 cal blanks. A real pain trying to hold it firmly enough in place so the hammer sets it off reliably. (Especially difficult if you have a springy board you're trying to fasten -- it keeps you from getting a hard enough strike to fire the cartridge sometimes.)

And whenever using these indoors, remember to use hearing protection. (Not a bad idea even outside, but inside, the echos do nasty things to your hearing.)

Enjoy, DoN.

Reply to
DoN. Nichols

I wouldn't trust any fastener for your application. Sounds like you want cantilievered shelves, this put the top anchors in tension, the worst thing to do.

Consider a 2x4 going from floor to ceiling, the top of the 2x4 anchored to the ceiling joists. Just nail your shelves to that. You could anchor the 2x4 to the wall with anchors or glue, this would be more for stability than structural.

I have seen a product called a 'sky hook' that is heavy duty shelf bracket with a nasty hook > I need to attach some items to a concrete wall such as a workbench and some

Reply to
Roy J

Thanks for all the suggestions!. I found a few fasteners on a shelf that the old tenant left behind and it looks like they are hardened nails that are fired from a gun (like a few of you suggested). That makes sense since there are some 2x4 runners that appear to be nailed to the concrete.

I've been experimenting with some different layouts in my new shop and it looks like I won't need very many attachments to the wall. I want to anchor

2 workbenches to the wall. Even though they have legs they feel more stable when they are anchored.

I'll look into the cost of renting a power driver but it sounds like drilling a few holes will be cheaper and more secure, especially since some of the shelves will be over my work bench.

BTW, this is a gunsmithing shop that I'm opening in Phoenix.

Thanks again!

Dave Berryhill

Reply to
Dave Berryhill

Hey Dave,

There is a fairly newish screw thingy called TAPCONs which work very well. You do have to drill a hole in the concrete first, but the correct drill is usually supplied in the package. Then they screw in just like a wood screw. The screws come in a variety of lengths and a few sizes, and the drill is easiest with a hammer drill" but not necessary.

Should be available at any hardware store.

I hear you about fastening the bench to the wall. Really helps with anything rhythmic like hack-sawing.

Good luck in your new venture.

Take care.

Brian Laws>Thanks for all the suggestions!. I found a few fasteners on a shelf that

Reply to
Brian Lawson

We bought a house when we moved to Toronto. My neighbour had one of those "guns" which we used to fasten a 2x4 to the concrete basement wall. We then put up a bench with two legs in front and the rear fastened to the 2x4. It worked great - for about a week. The vibration of the bench grinder and some hammering on the bench loosened those things. Every one failed.

When we built the house, garage and shop in this house, I read up on various fasteners in the Rawl catalog. The strongest they list is basicly ready rod (all-thread) epoxied into drilled holes. Of, course, they sell all sorts of gear and materials that are supposedly dummy proof but you sound pretty handy. I bought a Bosh rotary hammer/drill for, IIRC, about $100. It has an SDS chuck for the good carbide concrete drills. I also bought the SDS to 1/2" Jacobs type chuck accessory for it. It is by far the best of the three or four 1/2" electric drills I have so don't think of it as just for concrete. Anyway, I drilled holes for fastening wood bottom plates and various metal fittings to the concrete. Most of the holes were 9/16" for 1/2" threaded rod. These took 10seconds/hole - I timed it.

Probably the toughest application is my Sampson and Delilah posts in the shop. These are about 4' high 3x3x3/16" square steel tube with about a

12x12x1/2" plate welded to the bottom and a similar 3/8" plate welded to the top. The top plate is drilled to allow a Record vise or a pipe vise or ??? to be bolted down to the post. These have been used for much (ab)use including pulling between them with a come-along for testing some shop made turnbuckles. No problem.

Personally, epoxy and threaded rod is the only fastener to concrete I will consider anymore.


Reply to
Ted Edwards

I've been doing some construction lately and must have put in 6-700 tapcons. They are quite handy, but they do have limitations. For furring strips, I use them in conjunction with a good construction adhesive. For wall framing that is otherwise braced, I don't usually bother with the adhesive. They're great for mounting electrical boxes and panels.

However, I've had them pull out of the hole as well as shear off occasionally. I would not use them for any serious load, and particularly not for loading with any vibration (think bench grinder or hammering).

There's another kind of anchor that has a threaded shaft and an expanding wedge on the bottom. You drill the hole, put in the anchor and crank on the nut to set it. My whole house is tied to the foundation with those. Smaller sizes tend not to work so well (I think it's hard to get a consistently sized small hole in concrete, the tolerences work out better for larger holes), but anything over

5/16 seems to be pretty solid. For a bench, I'd probably use 3/8 to mount a furring strip (with a good quality adhesive) and then attach the bench to the strip. For a wall application, I'd probably throw some epoxy in the hole as well. If you use these, try to find quality US anchors, the imports use the cheapest s**t steel they can find and if they don't pull out, the threads will strip off when you crank the nut down.

A good quality epoxy anchor would work, but you probably won't find those in a corner or big box hardware store. You'd probably have to go to an industrial or building trade supplier to find those. MSC, for example, has Wej-it Power-Sert epoxy drop-in achors that look pretty neat, a 3/8 is around $2. The blurb says vibration resistant, but I don't think they come with epoxy.

Probably the best/cheapest way to attach something to concrete is a through bolt with large washers on each side to spread the load. This is often neither practical nor possible, however.


Reply to
Paul Amaranth

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