Fixes for Cracked End Grain?

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Forum topic by Syellin posted 08-01-2018 09:57 PM 837 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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9 posts in 1739 days

08-01-2018 09:57 PM

Topic tags/keywords: mistake fix crack damage

I’m constructing a Dutch Tool Chest and was nailing in the backboards when I cracked the end grain of the angled side of the case (see photo). Obviously I didn’t drill the pilot hole far enough, but that was the only spot that cracked. Testing the board the back remains firmly attached and there is glue at that top corner, so if feels fairly secure.

Any suggestions for how to repair the damage? I will paint the chest, so this will be covered , but I still have a sizable crack that concerns me.

Should I put glue in the crack and try to clamp it shut? Should I use wood filler and just fill the gap? CA glue and baking soda?

Any suggestions would be much appreciated.


8 replies so far

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John Smith

2135 posts in 771 days

#1 posted 08-01-2018 10:20 PM

Should I put glue in the crack and try to clamp it shut?




-- I am a painter. That's what I do. I paint things --

View BroncoBrian's profile


875 posts in 2567 days

#2 posted 08-01-2018 10:41 PM

Yes again. Glue it. Then drill and start again.

-- A severed foot is the ultimate stocking stuffer.

View becikeja's profile


1045 posts in 3421 days

#3 posted 08-01-2018 11:06 PM

I would get a syringe to fill it with glue and then clamp.

-- Don't outsmart your common sense

View DS's profile


3360 posts in 3028 days

#4 posted 08-01-2018 11:22 PM

I would remove the fastener that split it first, then glue, clamp, pre-drill etc.

-- "Hard work is not defined by the difficulty of the task as much as a person's desire to perform it.", DS251

View bilyo's profile


961 posts in 1711 days

#5 posted 08-03-2018 02:40 PM

Good advice above.
I believe you said that it was a nail, not a screw, that caused the split. If so It might be difficult to remove the nail without doing more damage. You can often “fix” this type of split leaving the nail in place by injecting as much glue into the split as possible and then apply lots of pressure on both sides to squeeze the split closed. This will compress the wood around the nail and close the split. You will need some clamps capable of lots of pressure like “C” clamps or pipe clamps.

Also, for the future, if you anticipate that you might have splitting problems, you can apply a clamp ahead of time applying pressure on either side of where the fastener will go. This will usually prevent splitting as the fastener is driven in. Pilot holes are always good.

View HonestlyMediocre's profile


27 posts in 558 days

#6 posted 08-06-2018 03:44 AM

Since the discussion of nails and screws has come up:

Nailing into end grain is never advisable. Nails achieve holding power by wedging between wood fibers, and there is not significant wedging action in this direction. If a nail was used in the situation above that would be a connection into end-grain. Attaching screws into end-grain is also not ideal, but it does provide some resistance and is often unavoidable.

Pre-drilling screws is a necessary practice, and can actually improve holding power of screws when the hole is appropriately sized compared to non-drilled holes. Nails should not be predrilled because, again, they rely on wedging action between the wood fibers for their holding power. Prevent spliting due to nailing by increasing the distance to the edge of a board. The previous suggestion of using a clamp before nailing sounds plausible and is worth a try.

View AESamuel's profile


100 posts in 1831 days

#7 posted 08-06-2018 09:55 AM

I would probably use a medium viscosity CA glue, injected as deep into the crack as possible then clamp closed.

If you can remove the nail first that would be best, then re-drill the pilot hole correctly. However, if that would cause damage to the peice, leave it in place and hope for the best!

View Robert's profile


3602 posts in 2089 days

#8 posted 08-06-2018 01:35 PM

I would use thin epoxy and clamp shut.

The way to avoid this is to drill with a clamp in place.

Careful to use the right size bit & overdrill just a bit.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

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