filling a void?

  • Advertise with us

« back to Finishing forum

Forum topic by MalcolmLaurel posted 04-02-2014 04:33 PM 2502 views 0 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View MalcolmLaurel's profile


298 posts in 1646 days

04-02-2014 04:33 PM

I’m working on a coffee table from a piece of reclaimed wood. I think it’s hickory as it’s quite hard, and quite old as well as I pulled a bunch of cut nails out of it. Anyway, there are some voids that need to be filled, one around a knot and a couple spots where the wood cracked and the piece is missing.

Anyway, what to fill it with? The finish will be base coats of shellac, followed by Deft lacquer on the top only to protect from spilled drinks. I don’t want the plastic look of a poured on finish but I’m not averse to clear plastic filling the voids.

-- Malcolm Laurel -

17 replies so far

View jmartel's profile


7951 posts in 2173 days

#1 posted 04-02-2014 04:53 PM

How about epoxy?

-- The quality of one's woodworking is directly related to the amount of flannel worn.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4998 posts in 2516 days

#2 posted 04-02-2014 05:24 PM

Epoxy would be my choice as well. You could color it black if you think that’s more appealing (on that knot, I would).

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View Junado's profile


38 posts in 1952 days

#3 posted 04-02-2014 05:30 PM

I have stabilized knots and small cracks with epoxy and it works fairly well. Tinted black in that case, it would most likely do a fine job.

-- Julien

View woodchuckerNJ's profile


1276 posts in 1657 days

#4 posted 04-02-2014 05:39 PM

I agree with everyone else, epoxy is the filler of choice for knots.

For the edge crack where you have a void, I would put in a little butterfly, and I would use a contrasting wood to add something to the look.

So you have other options, but that’s my opinion.

-- Jeff NJ

View MalcolmLaurel's profile


298 posts in 1646 days

#5 posted 04-02-2014 07:44 PM

Is there a clear epoxy? Where can I get such a thing? I don’t think the yellowish color of normal epoxy would be particularly attractive, nor do I like the idea of coloring it black.

I’m not too worried about the crack, it’s small, and it’s a rustic piece anyway. Never been fond of butterfly ties anyway.

-- Malcolm Laurel -

View dbhost's profile


5723 posts in 3255 days

#6 posted 04-02-2014 08:47 PM

Another vote for epoxy. Yes there is clear (ish) epoxy.

Bar top epoxy like Kleer Kote is crystal clear, but I have never seen it in quantities less than a quart…

I can’t find the container anymore, but the last job I used epoxy on was using Loctite brand epoxy, I think it was the 5 minute gel, and that stuff cured crystal clear…

What I did with securing loose knots in Walnut was to take the epoxy, and mix it with sawdust from the same species, as close in color as possible, and use it as a fill. It looks pretty good, but is shiny so it is a bit odd if you are using a matte finish on the piece…

-- Please like and subscribe to my YouTube Channel

View SCOTSMAN's profile


5849 posts in 3608 days

#7 posted 04-02-2014 09:45 PM

I first saw uncle Norm filling in a large gap in wood with epoxy and if I remember correctly old used toner catridge powder, it looked great black when finished.I would try it on a piece of scrap first to see what you think but I was really impressed one would think black would look terrible but I liked it very much Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

View yambo1's profile


5 posts in 2345 days

#8 posted 04-02-2014 09:50 PM

I have used the 5 Minute Epoxy to fill several voids and it works great. The 5 minute cure time makes a big difference unless you don’t mind waiting overnight.

-- Yale

View woodchuckerNJ's profile


1276 posts in 1657 days

#9 posted 04-02-2014 10:16 PM

I use west systems epoxy, and it is clear.

-- Jeff NJ

View richardwootton's profile


1699 posts in 1978 days

#10 posted 04-03-2014 12:04 AM

I typically use alcohol and and women to fill my voids… Oh wait, that’s not what we’re talking about! I’ve used the five minute two part epoxy in walnut and it dried clear. Just make sure all of the bubbles are out before you start filling holes. Also tape the underside with masking tape so it doesn’t run out everywhere.

-- Richard, Hot Springs, Ar -- Galoot In Training

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2713 days

#11 posted 04-03-2014 12:53 AM

I use the West System epoxy and even though it is clear, it looks quite black when used to fill knots and cracks. And I have never tinted it.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View oldnovice's profile


6896 posts in 3391 days

#12 posted 04-03-2014 01:34 AM

I go with the prevailing winds, epoxy would be #1 choice.

My second choice would be Timbermate as it has outstanding characteristics for voids, grain filling, and color matching. It is not toxic, cleans up with water, and any waste material can be reused.

I don’t know how much this stuff I have used but it is a fair amount.

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View MalcolmLaurel's profile


298 posts in 1646 days

#13 posted 04-03-2014 03:16 AM

The West System epoxies are all described as “light amber” which is like most epoxy adhesives… not what I want. I’m thinking perhaps clear casting resin might work? I haven’t ruled out adding something like stone chips to the epoxy.

I want to fill not only the knot but the gouge in the upper left corner that’s wider than it is deep.

-- Malcolm Laurel -

View Blackie_'s profile


4883 posts in 2535 days

#14 posted 04-03-2014 04:19 AM

Malcolm, the best epoxy that I’ve found and is clear is sold by great planes, it’s a two bottle 9oz each that you mix .

Here is the link

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at

View oldnovice's profile


6896 posts in 3391 days

#15 posted 04-03-2014 07:45 AM

I saw David Marks color epoxy to fill a knot void very similar to yours.
You might be able to find one of his videos on YouTube!

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

showing 1 through 15 of 17 replies

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics