Can I fix this broken chair?

Fori is not pleasedAugust 24, 2012

This chair had a bad day in the freight truck. Looks like solid wood, early 60s Drexel mass produced stuff.

I think the front leg just needs to be gently banged back onto the pegs. Should I use glue in the joint?

The back leg, however, is actually split. So it's beyond reassembling. Do I just glue it, clamp it, and keep fat people out of it? Or is it unsalvageable?


The top of the leg piece (what's it called when the leg runs all the way up the back?) is also broken and pulled away:

I know it won't be perfect but it would be nice to have sittable. Can I fix it? Thanks!

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mary_ruth

Is this chair part of a set you want to preserve having 'all' the chairs because you need that number of seating? Or a single chair used at a desk for example, or for extra seating when needed?

Since most of the damage was done where seams do not intersect, that means the wood is split, which means the integrity of the weight supporting feature of the chair has been compromised, and the chair could not be fixed properly.

To repair this chair will require a disassemble of the parts so each part can be considered to do its job for reassembly with each part having original integrity to hold the weight of someone sitting on it without wobbling, seam opening up to pinch someone, or someone getting hurt if the chair fails to hold its form.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2012 at 8:45AM
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brickeyee

Only if you can make a replacement part.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2012 at 11:58AM
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Fori is not pleased

Thanks guys. Guess it's a cleaning guinea pig then!

    Bookmark   August 25, 2012 at 12:29PM
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bobismyuncle

I'm going to disagree. Proper gluing will restore strength to this chair. "A lot of clean and a little glue and not the other way around." Clamp firmly once the glue is all the way in the splits. Just don't let the split slide "downhill." The dowel joint in the front needs to be disassembled, cleaned, reglued and clamped.

A good, clean and well-fitting long grain glue joint will stronger than the surrounding wood.

Avoid polyurethane glues such as Gorilla Glue. A good type I or type II PVA will do fine -- Titebond I, II or III, Elmer's Carpenter's glue, etc.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2012 at 9:29PM
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Fori is not pleased

I think I will go ahead and try it, Bob. It's got a very large area to glue instead of being in a small fiddly area.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2012 at 9:55PM
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brickeyee

"A good, clean and well-fitting long grain glue joint will stronger than the surrounding wood. "

The PVA glues may be stronger than the wood, but they all show creep under long term loading, like someone siting in the chair.

It is not worth the safety risk of having it give way at the wrong moment.

Hide glue does not creep and is also stronger than the wood, but still not worth the risk.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2012 at 9:47AM
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sloyder

Looks like someone had a bad day, and took it out on the chair!

    Bookmark   August 28, 2012 at 12:44AM
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