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How to Repair Furniture

There are many ways to repair furniture. It’s likely that there are as many ways as there are people doing it. There are however only a few ways to do it well. For example, a chair that has loose joints. If the joints are tight (not sloppy loose), then a repair can be as simple as using a product that swells the wood. This makes the chair tight and usable, but it is not a long lasting repair.

The proper procedure is to take the chair apart and clean all the joining surfaces inside of sockets and outside of dowels and tenons, removing any dust or residue. Then applying glue to both surfaces, while clamping all the joints and cleaning any glue that squeezes out and letting it dry. This method lasts for decades.

Other methods that are bad and seldom work are HOT GLUE, LIQUID NALES, SILICONE GLUE, and GORILLA GLUE. These almost always end in a collapse and often break the chair, which requires more extensive and costly repairs. Joints that are sloppy and loose are difficult to repair and are beyond most do-it-yourself woodworkers. This is where people often use gorilla glue. When their repair goes wrong, they bring it to me. Their method and use of the wrong glue makes a hard repair really hard (and the repair more costly).