I have received a commission to build monastic benches for a religious order. These benches must be built to last a long time. My question has to do with the bench hinge. the benches are divided into stalls for each person and the seat needs to fold up. The seats will be 28" long. I have thought about using a through rod as the hinge as opposed to pins. I am concerned that there will be too much stress on the hinge area over time given the cross section of the bench seat which will be about 1-1/2" thick at the hinge area. I can manufacture brass bushings with Stainless steel pins for wear. The bench will look similar to a standard church bench with end sections connected with a back support with the folding seat. I need to make them modular so that each stall can be separated by section because the monastery layout will change by location. In other words the design may go into several locations with some some rows having 4 stalls and some more than 4. I am probably going to build the initial 8 benches out of walnut or white oak. These will be real heavy so the modular design is important to ease installation.