How can I repair the broken back of this chair (pic)?

Knit Wit
by Knit Wit

Would anyone have any suggestions as to how to fix the broken back of this chair? I've seen tutorials on YouTube where they use glue and/or use serious tools to repair the chair, which I don't have. Any suggestions on how to do it with mininal tools?

  4 answers
  • GrandmasHouseDIY GrandmasHouseDIY on Jul 31, 2019

    Without replacing anything I would try wood putty and wood glue and several clamps. But to be sure it doesn't break again I would also put a steel bracket on there that reaches from one side of each break to the other. It won't look as nice but if you paint the chair, then paint the bracket, I don't think it would be noticeable. If not painting the chair then maybe you could even find a color paint for the bracket as close to the wood color as possible. Without the brackets for support though I would be worried it would just break again

    • See 1 previous
    • GrandmasHouseDIY GrandmasHouseDIY on Jul 31, 2019

      These little guys is what I meant by a bracket. You can purchase just about any shape and size of these at a hardware store. I use them all the time to help brace up old furniture. I think one of these over each break would really help

      comment photo
  • William William on Aug 04, 2019

    The joints need to be strengthened with the repair. Drill 1/4" holes in the chair break and the chair back. Insert dowels with wood glue in the chair break. Apply wood glue to the breaks and slip the back on. Use clamps, rope, to hold them together. Then you can use wood putty to fill any gaps.

    • Julian Maples Julian Maples on Dec 23, 2021

      Tx William. But how do you get the angle of the dowels right. You put them in the bottom piece ok. But how do you work out the angle to drill into the top piece?

  • Swan Road Designs Swan Road Designs on Aug 04, 2019

    You're pretty much between a rock and a hard place. Wood naturally breaks on its grain line, which appears to have happened with your chair.


    William has the answer to a most positive solution. The dowels will provide extra strength. Metal plates will only serve to add more holes (weakness because of the extra holes necessary to secure the plates). Do as little damage to the area to allow for the area to stay as strong naturally as possible.

  • William William on Dec 23, 2021

    1/4" dowels are very thin diameter. You would only drill about 3/4" to 1" deep in each end depending on the curve. Swan Road Designs is correct about the metal brackets. Screws would remove mean removing more wood. And through use the wood can split right along the screws in a straight line or split following the grain. The dowels and wood glue would support the broken parts together.