Help filling the gap

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Forum topic by becikeja posted 10-02-2016 10:59 PM 488 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View becikeja's profile


932 posts in 2989 days

10-02-2016 10:59 PM

I have glued up several mahogany boards to make a table. The top has a large carving carved into the top. Unfortunately once I carved over one of the joints it revealed a gap, less than 1/32 but visible. What can I fill this with so it will not be visible? I am going to dye (or maybe stain, have not decided yet) the mahogany to darken it up, so I need something that will hold the color well.

All suggestions, tips and tricks appreciated.


-- Don't outsmart your common sense

6 replies so far

View rwyoung's profile


409 posts in 3647 days

#1 posted 10-03-2016 02:47 PM

Pretty much anything you put in there will take up the dye differently than the wood. Your best bet would be to dye the wood FIRST, then make a fill to match. Then select a compatible topcoat to seal both together. Over time, the colors may shift apart. Could be a short time if lots of UV light present, could be a long time. Just depends on the type of dye you select and the filling material.

-- Don't sweat the petty things and don't pet the sweaty things.

View sras's profile


4922 posts in 3305 days

#2 posted 10-03-2016 02:55 PM

Depending on the specifics using thin shavings of the same wood might work. Fixes the color match problem, but can be tedious…

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View bondogaposis's profile


5055 posts in 2527 days

#3 posted 10-03-2016 03:21 PM

Slip some plane shavings in there from the same board with glue, then incorporate them into the rest of the carving.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View TheGreatJon's profile


339 posts in 1409 days

#4 posted 10-03-2016 03:22 PM

^I like the sliver idea. I did it once. It was tedious but it worked well. Press fit the thickest sliver that you can manage and then plane or sand it flush.

Packing it with sawdust from the same wood before applying a finish will get it get it close, but it won’t be a perfect match. You could also go for broke and just fill it with a black epoxy or something similar. Depending on the situation this can make it look intentional and part of the design.

-- This is not the signature line you are looking for.

View pintodeluxe's profile


5784 posts in 2989 days

#5 posted 10-03-2016 03:53 PM

Try Bondo’s idea with a wood shaving. If you’re still not satisfied with it, apply some furniture wax after the finish is applied. Choose a wax color similar to the finished color of the project.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View jbay's profile


2762 posts in 1075 days

#6 posted 10-03-2016 04:25 PM

Just use some of that Elmers “ProBond” wood filler from Lowes or Home Depot.
It will take a stain just fine. For a gap that small it’s not worth trying to stick slivers in, it’s going to look the same either way.

If not the wood filler I would do it the way rwyoung suggests, using a colored putty to match the stain, then finish.
I would probably put 1 coat of sealer on, and then put in the color matched putty.

It’s a myth that mixing sawdust from your project with glue will match when your staining. First off once you mix the sawdust with glue it will no longer accept stain and depending on what kind of glue it may color differently, especially if you use tightbond.
Natural finished wood, mixing sawdust with white glue, may be an exception.

-- “Hanging onto resentment, is letting someone you despise live rent-free in your head.” (Ann Landers)......

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