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Thread: Fixing a mitered mortice and tenon joint

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Fixing a mitered mortice and tenon joint

    I am currently making a dining table. The joints are mitered, motice and tenon on the apron/legs. This past weekend while preparing the table for finishing I noticed one of the tenons was loose and coming out of the mortice. The reason was due to all the stress I put on the joint as I have to move the table back and forth everytime I want to get around it (I am in a tight space). This is no excuse for a failed joint but I realize that even with all the care I take moving the table I am placing the joints under duress and this has caused the failure.

    That said my fix was to drill a couple 1/4" holes in key areas in the top of leg, fill with glue and put a 1/4" dowell in it, spreading the glue inside the joint. This seems to have worked well as the joint is strong this morning when I took the clamps off.

    My question is what would your fix have been? And do you recommend I do the same to the other three legs just in case?

  2. #2
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    I don't have an answer to your question but I do have a question. Did the glue fail and thats why it became loose?
    Rise above the rest

  3. #3
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    If the fit is a little loose, scrape off the old glue and glue on a thin piece of veneer, sand down to a tight fit and glue up. You might also try corner blocks to reduce the stress when moving. You can also put the piece on something with casters on it while its in the shop.

    Hope some of this helps.
    Jess
    Don't believe everything you think!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron Beaver View Post
    I don't have an answer to your question but I do have a question. Did the glue fail and thats why it became loose?
    Quote Originally Posted by Jesse Cloud View Post
    If the fit is a little loose, scrape off the old glue and glue on a thin piece of veneer, sand down to a tight fit and glue up. You might also try corner blocks to reduce the stress when moving.
    Ditto? and Ditto.

    Jeff
    God grant me the senility to forget the people I never liked anyway,
    the good fortune to run into the ones I do,
    and the eyesight to tell the difference.


    Kudzu Craft Lightweight Skin on frame Kayaks.
    Custom built boats and Kits

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the replies guys. I think I might have erred in the amount of glue I used on the joint. The tenons fit well; not to tight or too loose. After the dowell plug the joint reset quite well. Even though there are support rails I will put some corner braces on.

  6. #6
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    Here's a pic of the table.

  7. #7
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    Near Winchester, VA
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    That's gonna be a real nice table!

    Just out of curiosity, would you consider pocket hole screws to hold the joints together? They wouldn't really be noticeable unless someone was under the table. They'd certainly help keep the joints tight.

  8. #8
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    Wow Alex! I see what you mean about a tight space!
    Don't believe everything you think!

  9. #9
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    Felt pads on the bottom of the legs will aid in slideing it.

    As far as the joint, I would if possible pullit apart then remove all the old glue, check fit, make any adjustments if needed then reassemble. Corner blocks will also help keep the legs from racking will sliding it.

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