Follow the following steps to reglue a chair.
- Disassemble the loose joints. A rubber mallet is helpful here.
- Lightly sand the tenons (on slats and rungs) to remove dried glue
- Remove dried glue from the bottom of the holes that the tenons fit
into. Use a small chisel. Wear eye protection glue chips can fly
- Dip the tenons into warm water. This raises the grain, opens the
pores of the wood, and swells the tenon slightly to help ensure a good glue
bond when reassembling.
- Use a Q-Tip (cotton swab) to wet the walls of the holes with warm
water. For same reason as step 4.
- Let the tenons and holes dry completely.
- Reglue the chair. When regluing the chair, apply an even coat of wood
glue (Franklin Titebond or Elmers Carpenters glues are recommended)
to the walls of the holes using a small dowel or small brush. Do not apply glue
to the tenons because they may swell and make reassembly more difficult. Do not
apply too much glue, because it will pool in the bottom of the hole and may
prevent the tenon from going all the way in.
- If the tenons are very loose in the holes, you will have to use a
glue with good gap filling properties to make a lasting repair. In this case
use an epoxy glue to reglue the chair.
- If a joint is loose, but cannot be taken completely apart without
danger of breaking the parts, sometimes a product such as "Chair-Loc" can be
worked into the joint more easily than glue. These products swell the wood to
lock the joint, and can often be useful in chair repair. They are available at
most hardware stores in the glue section.