Here’s a couple of pics of an antique dining chair we had in a while ago with a damaged leg. The top part of the leg where the joints are was completely destroyed. We clamped it back together from several different angles in order to get all the original pieces of wood to stick back together effectively. Some screws were also used during the gluing up process to make sure that there was plenty of force coming from the front aspect of the chair leg. Once the glue had dried, we removed the clamps from the furniture and removed the screws. The next part of the repair was to fill the voids where the screws had been, then shape them to blend in with the rest of the wood. Finally, we had to ‘touch-in’ the repair to blend in with the old surface of the antique furniture. We used a french polishing technique involving dyes to get the colour looking right and ‘antiqued’ the surface so it didn’t stand out as being newly repaired (see last photo).
This dining table was made up of solid lengths of teak jointed together with floating tongues. These had previously been “repaired” using what looked like silicone sealer(!) and hadn’t been clamped up properly or even made flush at the ends.
Repairs and restoration involved re-doing the jointing, routing the ends straight and planing some of the boards which wouldn’t separate in order to get the top looking reasonably flat and uniform.
The table had also been stained with quite an uneven red stain and had lots of dents and white filler in the gaps so there was quite a bit of touching-in to do here and some localised staining to get everything even before adding a cold stain to kill the red and bring back a more natural tone. Finally, we finished the table top in shellac and then wax.
We’ve had the black ‘French Polish’ (shellac) out in our workshop ebonizing some furniture. We’ve got a very cool Hans Wegner ‘The Chair’ replica, a nice set of Mid Century dining chairs and a cool little oak cabinet.
More on ebonizing here: