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Tapered legs and small checks

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Forum topic by CWWoodworking posted 08-10-2020 10:20 PM 246 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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CWWoodworking

1004 posts in 1026 days


08-10-2020 10:20 PM

I make and sell an end table with a 1 sided taper leg. Made from 1” red oak. I go through quite a few of these. Made a run of 60+ today to give you an idea.

Occasionally a small check or crack in the wood lands on the taper. I have tried to repair with super glue and wood putty to varying degrees of success.

Does anyone have a better repair?

I hate throwing them out because I usually don’t find it till the end and already have the labor stuck in it.


8 replies so far

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Madmark2

1604 posts in 1436 days


#1 posted 08-10-2020 10:26 PM

Cut the other end

-- The hump with the stump and the pump!

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Rich

5865 posts in 1437 days


#2 posted 08-10-2020 10:45 PM

Picking up some touch-up and repair techniques would be valuable in your work. On a leg you can get away with the putty sticks since there won’t be any wear in the area requiring a harder fill.

The trick with fills is to do your staining and get at least one coat of finish on before you do the fill. You want to match the final color rather than trying to find a fill that stains the same as the wood. The coat of finish will prevent the stick from getting in the grain around the fill. For the putty sticks, heat the tip and rub it into the check. Let it harden and scrape it flush with whatever is handy. A credit card works well. Finally, clean and smooth the fill surface and surrounding area with a non-woven pad and a dab of orange oil. The 3M white pad works well as do the finer (1500 and 2500) Mirka pads. After that, finish your top coats and it’ll be virtually unnoticeable.

Mohawk Fil-Stik putty sticks come in over 450 colors, so finding match is easy.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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Madmark2

1604 posts in 1436 days


#3 posted 08-11-2020 01:23 AM

Matching the color is the least of your worries.

Don’t use the checked pieces. Inspect closely for checks before the tapering operation to save the labor later on.

Even with filler, the checks will open and/or split the first time the table is dragged.

-- The hump with the stump and the pump!

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CWWoodworking

1004 posts in 1026 days


#4 posted 08-11-2020 01:43 AM

Here is a pic. I feel that they are so small, the fill sticks may not work? Sometimes after sanding I can’t even feel them, but they become noticeable when painting/staining.

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Rich

5865 posts in 1437 days


#5 posted 08-11-2020 01:49 AM

I can’t tell anything from the photo. You can use fill sticks on very small cracks. It’ll work just fine.

Anyone who says matching color doesn’t matter doesn’t understand the process. We’re not talking about using pieces with large checks or other structural issues, instead the goal is to be able to repair minor cosmetic imperfections that would otherwise be unacceptable for a finished piece..

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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CWWoodworking

1004 posts in 1026 days


#6 posted 08-11-2020 01:57 AM

I think I’ll give the sticks a try. Pretty low cost solution if it works.

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therealSteveN

6241 posts in 1422 days


#7 posted 08-11-2020 03:10 AM

I like Shellac sticks, and a burn in knife. Usually you end with something that looks like one of Ma Natures natural blips. With your red oak, a lot would depend on if you were staining/dye to color them. Liberon has a great range, pretty good prices, and are sold nationwide. If you don’t have a hot knife, I’ve seen reasonable prices on the Bay, Rockler, WoodCraft are getting something like a 2,000 % markup on theirs, and they all look like the same darn tool. I paid 11 bux shipped on the Bay and got 12 tips of different shape, so I can get into most anything. The high priced ones come with one flat blade.

-- Think safe, be safe

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Rich

5865 posts in 1437 days


#8 posted 08-11-2020 03:32 AM


I like Shellac sticks, and a burn in knife.

- therealSteveN

I never agree with you, but that is an excellent suggestion. I would go with either a hard fill, or a burn-in myself. However, I try to tailor my suggestions to those who perhaps haven’t invested the time and money it takes to do proper burn-ins. Hence, the recommendation for putty (wax) sticks. On a surface that won’t receive any wear to speak of, they are far more approachable for someone just starting out. They can get excellent results without a ton of money invested in tools and the hours it takes to learn to use them.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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