A chair must be strong enough to support the varying weight of the user but must also be light enough to be portable. The big loads, continuous motions and light joints contribute to the deterioration of the chair joints. This is the reason why chair repair is a common thing in several woodworker shops or furniture repair shops. Following are some chair repair problems that you can DIY.
Wobbly Spindles, Rungs and Legs
- For wobbly spindles or rungs, apply glue into the joints if no bracing is used.
- Separate these parts from the chair’s frame carefully for a more lasting repair.
- If both ends are unsteady, remove the whole piece.
- If the joints are stubborn, get self-locking pliers and turn the part moderately to weaken the glue.
- Cushion the chair part to avoid damaging the wood.
Damaged Non-structural Spindles and Rungs
- Use glue to repair breaks and splits in non-structural spindles and rungs.
- Separate the damaged ends of each piece and apply glue to each part.
- Use a glue injector to force glue if the part has snapped.
- Attach the parts carefully by applying pressure so they fasten firmly.
- Remove any remaining glue.
- Cover the broken part with a wax paper.
- Using a piece of cord, wrap the broken part to straighten it properly.
- Get a rope or clamp to fasten the chair firmly.
- Allow the glue to dry completely.
- Turn the chair upside down and hold the legs with your hands.
- Shake and twist the each leg to find any loose dowels, mortises, splits or cracks. If possible, pull each leg apart.
- Apply glue to a dovetail or dowel if it is exposed for every motion.
- Clamp each part to fasten the dowel into the matching hole.
- Apply glue with a damp cloth and let it dry overnight.
- Take the clamps off and use a putty knife to remove the dried glue.
- Using the putty knife, separate the splits or cracks and apply glue into the crack.
- Clamp the leg and tighten to put the crack together firmly.
- Drill through the crack using a 3/8-inch drill bill and all throughout the leg.
- Drill two evenly spaced holes if the split or crack is more than 3 inches long.
- Hammer a 3/8- x 8-inch dowels into the hole allowing the dowel to jut from both of the leg sides.
- Use a damp cloth to remove wet glue and allow it dry overnight.
- Use a coping saw to cut the bulging ends of the dowel.
- Smoothen the dowels’ ends by sanding them using a 120-grit sandpaper.
- Mark the dowels’ end using a stain marker and use a putty crayon to fill hairline cracks and nail holes.
A chair is the most battered piece of furniture but repairing it immediately will make it last longer and save you from buying a new one. Lengthen the life of your chair and make it looking new by following the above tips on how to fix a broken wooden chair.