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Thursday, April 1, 2010

Repairing a Cracked Headboard from an Eastlake Bed (ca. 1880)

I recieved a Walnut Eastlake headboard that had developed a crack down the center of its main panel. For more information on the Eastlake style click on the Eastlake label on the right hand of the screen.
The crack was more or less where two boards had been joined and the glue line failed. The reason for this is that as the boards shrank across the grain, thy needed to move and the only place for them to move was in the center. There are two ways of dealing with this. If the boards are easily removed , you can remove them and join them back together. Because these boards were glued I chose the other option which was to cut a tapered wedge on the table saw and tap it into the crack. once the wedge had been glued in place I trimmed the excess so that it was flush with the surface of the boards. I took several photos which deal with the process which appear below with description.
This first photo shows the crack running the length of the center panel. The tapered wedge is laid along side the crack to the left.
Here is a photo of the wedge being glued. The clamps at either end are gluing the separate boards to the frame of the headboard.Here is another view of the same procedure.After the glue had dried, the clamps are removed and the wedge is left. I also inserted a smaller wedge on the lower right hand side of the headboard to fill another crackThe last step was to carve down the wedge so that it was flush with the other boards. after it had been carved and sanded I stained it to match the color of the Walnut.
Here is a photo of some trim being glued down on the headboard.

1 comment:

  1. Amazing! What kind of glue do you use? I'm trying to repair an Eastlake Parlor table and wood glue didn't hold. I'm considering liquid nails, but not going to do anything till I find out what to use.