Repairing Broken Chair Leg

Greetings All,
I have a bit of a dilemma. We have an oak dining chair with a broken hard-carved front leg. It is an antique and we would like to repair it so we can continue using it. The problem is the grain runs diagonally to the floor where the leg broke which will make clamping it a bit tough. Does anyone have any reccomendations for glue/epoxy to hold the leg together? What about using a pin or dowel in both faces of the break to help hold the joint together?
Thanks in advance.
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On 20 Apr 2004 13:38:27 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@netscape.net (LarryB) wrote:

We have my wife's grandmother's dining chairs. I've done a fair bit of building and fixing, but these have special value. I don't want to tell you what we paid to have them done professionally, but will tell you it was worth every penny. Depending on how much you value the chair, I'd take a penny's worth of advice and go to the people who do it all the time, and do it well. We see no flaws, restained even, and solid as a rock. I'm building stuff I can do well to pay for the work.
Dan.
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I'd second Danny Boy's observations. If the piece is valuable to you, then don't use it to practice your restoration techniques. Give it to a pro.
If you don't value it that much, then keep in mind the principle that you shouldn't do anything which can't be undone by an expert at a later date - ie don't use epoxy etc.
And you shouldn't use techniques which are inappropriate - ie stuff like biscuits, angle plates etc.
Cheers,
Frank
(LarryB) wrote:

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snipped-for-privacy@netscape.net (LarryB) writes:

If you have two pieces that aren't still attached at all, so that you could rub them into a proper fit. I'd recommend hide glue.
Not liquid hide glue, but the old timey stuff from rabbit skin and blood. It cures to about 50% in about a minute. What that means is you can glue with no clamping other than your hands.
Understand though that hide glue is NOT a good gap filler. It needs a tight fit. So if your pieces are in such condition that you can nestle them tightly back together with out lots of slop... it'll work really good.
The glue is mixed with water and heated to thickish consistently then applied lightly to both pieces... hot. When you settle the pieces into place, apply hand pressure for as long as you can stand it. But a minute is enough.
Then put the piece out of harms way for about 24 hrs. When you break a hide glued joint, it always pulls wood from both sides, so hide glue is as strong or stronger than the wood.
I definitely recommend you read up on hide glue use first and practice at least twice on similar wood. Its really not hard to mix and use though. Needs to be about 140 F. when applied.
It can be obtained at woodcraft.com on line, or Garrett Wade. Probably lots of other supply houses... Make sure you get the dry granular kind. A more modern variety called `liquid hide glue' lacks the quick partial cure property.
Once you've gotten on to how it works, you'll be using it for lots of stuff.
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On Tue, 20 Apr 2004 16:38:27 -0400, LarryB wrote

If the break is not like iscarf joint then you will need some long pin to provide inner strength. A dowel is not long enough. Threaded metal rod is good. Use a gap filling glue like SystemThree T-88 and you will be OK.
Someone suggested animal hide glue for a break like this. That is the wrong adhesive for repairs of this type. It is the right adhesive for assembly, not for repairing broken wood. Pin the legparts just the way that a bone doctor would pin your broken bones.
The grain you are describing is called "short grain".
The following webpage will give you an overview of the kind of reapir you want to perform:
<http://www.prorrc.com/Articles/March04/Bugs.html
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My suggestion, as the grain runs diagonally you are probably worried that lateral clamping will cause the joint to slip longitudinally. To prevent this apply a clamp end to end ,clean the break thoroughly, glue with titebond or the equivalent and clamp laterally .
As these glues are as strong as the the parent wood if you get a good joint everything should be fine and no dowels or the like will be needed............mjh
-- http://members.tripod.com/mikehide2

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