to screw or to glue, that is the question.

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Forum topic by dillrepair posted 07-23-2007 06:35 PM 1348 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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5 posts in 4137 days

07-23-2007 06:35 PM

These appear to be my only options in the matter. This is a pic of the column for a lamp that i’ve been building, 3 sides of which are already firmly stuck together. I want to glue the fourth but i have some moving parts inside that i’m not sure i want to isolate. There is a gear that i cut from a piece of birdseye that i turned and then put a turned ebony pin through. moving parts

Anyway, I really doubt that the maple gear will ever break, and i know that the ebony pin would take a car running over it to break (11/16 “), the line may need to be replaced at some point but theres a big enough opening on the back to get some fine needle nose pliers or whatever in there to get at it. The piece that locks the gear in place is plenty strong, and held on by a small diameter screw, but i suppose if someone was very rough on the lamp it could bust or the screw could bend. The only way to get that screw out is by sticking a very small blade screwdriver through the small hole you can see on the right side (the back of the lamp).

So enough rambling.. should i glue up the outside piece once i have all the electrics set inside there as well, or should i recess some screws on the outside and plug the holes with ebony? The other side shows no signs of being screwed and glued.

I doubt anything would go wrong with any of these parts in the first 20 or so years… its about being able to fix it way down the road if someone wanted to. I’m just not sure what to do.

Oh, also, in case anyone was wondering there is a small metal pin (cut off nail) that goes through both sides of the gear and the ebony dowel, just in case the glue doesn’t hold forever.

-- "sir are you classified as human?" ---- "negative, i am a meat popsicle"

6 replies so far

View woodspar's profile


710 posts in 4273 days

#1 posted 07-23-2007 08:47 PM

When in doubt – use screws.

-- John

View MsDebbieP's profile


18616 posts in 4335 days

#2 posted 07-23-2007 09:20 PM

and if you are concerned about “matching” you can some fake plugs on the opposite side to match

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View Ethan Sincox's profile

Ethan Sincox

767 posts in 4348 days

#3 posted 07-23-2007 09:24 PM

You could glue with hide glue. Most antique restorers use hide glue because it is reversable.

If you don’t want to deal with the hot pot and the melted glue, you can buy it in liquid form – I’m pretty sure titebond makes it.

-- Ethan,

View dillrepair's profile


5 posts in 4137 days

#4 posted 07-24-2007 06:59 AM

First, thanks everyone for replying, i really do appreciate any and all advice, especially since i’m still a novice at most forms of joinery..

i thought about putting dummy plugs on the other side too, maybe it would look good with more ebony accents… hide glue also came to mind but how strong is it? How easy is it to remove, just steam and water? I cringe thinking about how these particular pieces would react to steam, but still would rather glue it. If i could get a little better than half the strength of titebond III then it might hold. Hide glue is supposed to shrink and tighten up a bit as the water goes out of it right?

This is old growth red oak… or at least the guy at woodcraft thought it was. It does look like oak, but when i bought it i thought it was hickory.. looked very similar to the wormy hickory labeled pile next to it, even had 1 or two worm holes in it. (it was in a community pile of warped cuts selling for a bit less) Purchased from timeless timber in ashland. (_love that place) Anyway the stuff is wonderful to work with, but the grain of these particular pieces has posed some problems.

-- "sir are you classified as human?" ---- "negative, i am a meat popsicle"

View dillrepair's profile


5 posts in 4137 days

#5 posted 07-24-2007 07:08 AM

sorry.. accidental double post… but i love this quote: “Timeless Timber, a company that is perhaps the most environmentally conscious lumber company in the world. All of the wood milled is ecologically sound and carries the environmental Scientific Certification Systems, seal of approval for 100% underwater salvaged timber. Underwater logging reduces the negative impacts of commercial forestry by utilizing existing resources more responsibly. Recovered from the depths of the Great Lakes Region, other US, and Canadian waterways, virgin old-growth timber is 500-1200 years old. First growth virgin lumber demonstrates a fineness of grain pattern and density that has not been available to woodworking artisans for over 100 years and is instantly recognizable as antique.”

Homer says: mmmmmmm 500-1200 years old, tight grain…

-- "sir are you classified as human?" ---- "negative, i am a meat popsicle"

View snowdog's profile


1166 posts in 4157 days

#6 posted 07-24-2007 02:57 PM

I would love to see a pictures of the entire piece.

-- "so much to learn and so little time"..

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