Issue with damaged item of sentimental value. - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 10-21-2016, 06:07 PM Thread Starter
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Issue with damaged item of sentimental value.

Hello to everyone! I made a thread to introduce myself in the correct location, and hopefully I am posting this in the right place also!

I have a magazine rack that my grandfather made in high school shop class, so it should be about 70 years old. The grain on the end boards runs vertically and I had a foster dog decide to get off my couch by way of the rack, so one of the feet broke off. I glued it back on with about 35lbs of pressure with Gorilla wood glue, but I don't anticipate that it is safe to bear weight. So I'm looking at my options on how to make it sturdy. As you can see in the pictures, one end where the foot is attached already has a crack in it that somehow hasn't broken off itself.

I know one option is to drill a long hole and insert a couple of screws and then plug the holes but I'd have to drill perfectly straight and drill from the outside, which really isn't ideal for cosmetic purposes. My other thought was to attach something to the inside of the end panels to actually bear the weight and keep pressure off of the feet of the table. I'm open to suggestions-even if they are to take it to a local woodworker!

Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 7 Old 10-21-2016, 06:18 PM
where's my table saw?
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Keep it original!

If the wood splits off, whether by accident or from old age I would just open the split if it's still attached and reglue it. Or if the split separates it into 2 pieces, just glue, clamp and reattach. Magazines are heavy and any forces will create large stresses on the joints or in this case the long grain in the feet. That's not the end of the world however, because long grain is the easiest to repair. A proper glue in long grain is just as strong as the wood itself. As long as it was not previously glued in the split, you should be all good! Do not add any reinforcements whether screws or side panels which would take away from the original look and character.
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The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)

Last edited by woodnthings; 10-21-2016 at 06:21 PM.
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post #3 of 7 Old 10-21-2016, 06:22 PM Thread Starter
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Wow, I didn't know glue was that strong! I keep only a few things in the rack section and really only put drinks on it (not on the bare wood, of course) as an end table for the couch.

Do you know what kind of wood it is? It was the same dark color inside the split.
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post #4 of 7 Old 10-21-2016, 06:26 PM
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Woodenthings advice is right on. Woodworkers often glue things together before the final cuts to size, then trim off part of the glued up wood. 90% of the time we bust the scrap apart after it's trimmed off and 95% of the time it separates someplace other than the joint.
Consider getting a bottle of Zap-a-gap and the tiny nozzles you can buy for it,and inject it into the joint where you can. Add a little at a time never closer than 15 min. between applications.
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post #5 of 7 Old 10-21-2016, 08:04 PM
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I am with to other guys advising to just glue it back together, I would be almost willing to bet that a piece that wide was made up of two or more boards when it was built if you examine it closely.

Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something -Plato

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post #6 of 7 Old 10-21-2016, 08:43 PM
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If it just has a crack in it you can spread a bead of glue over the crack and rub it into the creavase with your thumb. You do it over and over until glue starts coming out the other side. When it comes out the other side you can clamp it together. Because of the contoured shape it will be a little difficult to clamp. What you can do is clamp some scrap pieces of wood to the leg on each side of the break and then put a clamp on the scraps to pull it together. It will end up being stronger than new.
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post #7 of 7 Old 10-22-2016, 12:33 AM Thread Starter
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I'm really impressed with the welcome here!

When I glued it, I clamped some half inch birch scrap on either side of the broken piece and made them parallel with each other and square with the floor. I applied the glue, sat it in place carefully, and put about 35lbs of weight on top of that. It shifted a tad so I had to tap the broken piece a tad while the excess glue squeezed out. Then I wiped off the excess with a damp paper towel. The weight was there for at least an hour, then I pulled everything off and left it undisturbed after that for a day and a half.
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