Chair Repair

A few weeks ago a co-worker mentioned a chair that he needed to repair and inquired about borrowing some clamps. Happy to lend the clamps I went a step forward and volunteered to glue the joints. Little did I know that I was about to embark on an adventure.


The chair is a beautiful example of mission furniture and I intended to capture its dimensions when I finished, however it slipped my mind. The joints have opened up over time and it should only take a small amount of time to open the joints, clean them up and re-glue.

My first problem occurred when I could only get one side of the leg apart. Mortise and Tenon joints attach the rails at the bottom of the legs which come apart easily. The dowels however are loose but will not come out of the holes. Additionally two are cracked. I ended up drilling out the existing dowels. I then realized that one of them is a custom dowel with the hole on one side bigger than the other. Followed by nails in one of the mortises I can see that the chair was repaired previously. Needless to say what looked like an hour took four. It certainly is a nice chair though.




  1. July 19, 2013 at 8:25 pm

    Chairs are one of the toughest things to fix properly with all the forces put on the joints. It looks like you’re doing a good job.

    • July 19, 2013 at 8:32 pm

      It’s always fun to take apart someone else’s work and see how it was done. Thanks for reading.

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