Made a mistake - can you help fix it?

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Forum topic by Siv posted 12-13-2017 08:33 PM 633 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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62 posts in 1019 days

12-13-2017 08:33 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I’m making a pen box for my sister from walnut and purpleheart and I made a mistake cutting the edge splines – the box moved a little in the jig when cutting the top spline and gouged a chunk off the corner. I haven’t cut the top off the box yet and the plan was to cut just below the first spline.

I’ve had several thoughts on how to fit it:
1, cut the whole side edge off on the miter saw and make a purpleheart replacement
2, cut just the top corner off and replace with purpleheart down to the first spline
3, clean up the chunk to make a nice smooth indentation and keep it as a feature of the box (will make opening easier)
4, expand the spline cut so make it extra wide to cover the “oopsie” and insert a decorative spline (maybe alternating layers of walnut and purpleheart)

What do you think? Any better ideas? This is supposed to be a Christmas present so I need to be finished by the 24th and only have time in the evenings after work… I’m leaning towards number 3 as my preferred option.

6 replies so far

View sras's profile


5135 posts in 3579 days

#1 posted 12-13-2017 08:50 PM

#3 is a good option. I like to take a problem and turn it into a feature. In this case you wouldn’t have thought of an indentation there but now it makes sense!

I also like your wide spline idea. You could round off the corners which would help get rid of some of the damage and allow a narrower wide spline…

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View Manitario's profile


2778 posts in 3332 days

#2 posted 12-13-2017 09:00 PM

I’d glue together a small scrap of walnut and purpleheart and glue it into the chunk that came out. You can then smooth it down to the sides and recut the spline slot.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View jeffswildwood's profile


3976 posts in 2427 days

#3 posted 12-13-2017 09:00 PM

Could you 45 the corners then redo the splines like this.

-- We all make mistakes, the trick is to fix it in a way that says "I meant to do that".

View LittleShaver's profile


563 posts in 1069 days

#4 posted 12-13-2017 09:00 PM

I like the round it over and use the original spline approach. Softer (rounded) edges and corners on the box will make it feel better.

-- Sawdust Maker

View oldnovice's profile


7496 posts in 3817 days

#5 posted 12-13-2017 10:06 PM

Welcome to the world of woodworking as I am sure we have all made mistakes.

As to your problem, I have to agree with Steve, post # 1, as this reduces the amount of effort and, possibly adds to the appearance!

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View TungOil's profile


1300 posts in 944 days

#6 posted 12-14-2017 01:34 AM

Personally I’d probably lean towards #4 if it will look ok.

-- The optimist says "the glass is half full". The pessimist says "the glass is half empty". The engineer says "the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"

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