I have broken chair that I'd like to fix. I have no wood working tools or experience. All I have lying around or currently have access to are ropes, hammer, nails, screws and wood glue.

Picture of how my chair looks like

The chair looks something like this, and one of the joint at the back near the corner block has come loose (just above the arrow where Stretchers is written).

Is there some hope to get this fixed and in usable condition?

'Til now I have joined the back and the front legs with ropes, to create tension, so that it will hold and it is doing a decent job, but I am sure there will be a better way to repair it. Thanks.

  • Did the actual wood break or did the joint just come apart?
    – JACK
    Commented May 16, 2020 at 20:13
  • @JACK The joint came apart Commented May 16, 2020 at 20:44
  • What sort of seat structure? The screws aren't any good without drill and bits, and nails aren't really a good approach. You'll want to glue it all back together at as many points as possible and use the rope to winch things tight. More details are needed.
    – isherwood
    Commented May 16, 2020 at 21:05

1 Answer 1


Spread the joint apart and scrape off any excess,loose glue. Spread your wood glue over all the surfaces of the joint, in any dowel rod holes and around dowels. Make sure there's a groove in the dowel rod so excess glue can escape. Press the joint together firmly, tapping it with the hammer. Take your rope and wrap it around the seat frame of the chair and tie a knot leaving enough slack so you can loop the hammer or other object in the rope and twist it to tighten the rope around the frame, clamping the joint tight,like tightening a tourniquet. Let the glue dry 24 hours and you should be good to go.

  • It worked !!! I was sceptical at first (before reading your answer ) that glue would simply be too weak. But at present it is holding just fine . Thanks a lot 👍 Also I didn't know one can form clamps with ropes too, the way I tied them was actually very loose. I have left the rope clamps still in place , because they provide extra support and I think it has worked out great Commented May 23, 2020 at 16:50
  • Glue in the mortise-and-tenon joint and clamping while it set is presumably how the chair was assembled in the first place, or at least that would be the traditional approach.
    – keshlam
    Commented May 17 at 12:12

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