Published at Saturday, June 22nd, 2019 - 18:20:52 PM. Bar Stools. By Vayle Burel.
You can buy a bar stool for as little as $9. Typically bar stools less than $100 are ”RTA” or ”Ready to Assemble”. This means that the bar stool must be bolted together by the customer. Using as many as FIFTY (yes, I once sold a stool that required 50 bolts) bolts, legs must be attached, seats must be attached, arms, back, seat frame, etc. Every bolt used to assemble a bar stool is a potential problem. Everyday use will loosen bolts over time resulting in a potentially dangerous situation if you do not periodically check the tightness of all the bolts. Even worse, many RTA stools use thin-walled metal with no additional support for the bolt’s threads to grasp. I have seen hundreds of these lower quality stools that will easily strip threads simply by being assembled. Additionally, lower priced stools are typically sold one way: one color, one fabric, no options.
Even if you plan to purchase a bar stool that is pre-assembled, ask the salesperson if it is an RTA bar stool. Many retailers will pre-assemble the bar stool and sell it at a perceived ”UNBELIEVABLE PRICE”. Look for bolts holding legs and other parts together. Avoid these bar stools if they are going to be used on a continuing basis. ”Nicer” metal bar stools typically have all-welded frames. The only bolts you may see hold the seat to the swivel mechanism and there may be a few screws holding the seat pad to the metal frame. This type of construction is far more sturdy than ”RTA” stools.
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