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ANTIQUE FURNITURE RESTORATION DISCUSSION BOARD

Re: Antique drop leaf table

Posted By: James Schooley (0-2pool241-206.nas2.sioux-city1.ia.us.da.qwest.net)
Date: 12/7/3 12:25

In Response To: Re: Antique drop leaf table (Benton Ham)

I know you did not mean you might consider planning off the top face of the table, and the advise so far is all good. However you should look at what has caused the problem. If the joint gave out simply from aged glue then proceed as advised, and consider adding glue dowels too. But if the joint has given way as the result of surface shrinkage and tight fitting bonds to the table apron, then you may want to allow for the seasonal movement in the top. Many old furniture tops were built with no consideration for this and after years of shrinkage and extra dry conditions in homes with forced air furnaces, such joint failure is common. Resulting in the adjecent glue joint to fail, or even worse, a split board. Slotted screw holes are one solution but special hardware can be used to provide the slipping you need to prevent this event, and do so more safely. The solution is illustrated in many woodworking books and involves a metal plate bent into a dogleg shape that fits into a thin groove cut into inside of the apron. Another device is to use a desk clip, this is a flat metal plate with a pair of holes that will let you put one screw into the top and the other into the top side of the apron, where you will need to chisel out a small mortice to allow the desk clip to hide from view when seen from the front sides.

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