I recently picked up a 1920s Buffet and China Cabinet manufactured by Rockford National Furniture Company. The legs and feet have wood chips broken on them. And I actually found a lot of these pieces in the drawer. I've never seen this before and thought maybe they were chips that were added on but someone suggested that maybe they were actually broken off the legs and feet. The breaks are extremely clean. They look like wood caps or covers. What are these pieces? And what should I do with them? Should I try and place them back on and if so how?
Answer The legs were made of glued up boards then turned on a lathe. What has happened is common and you are fortunate the pieces are there. Fitting them back is sometimes easy but sometimes the flat surfaces are not flat and the pieces do not fit tight. if that is the case then they must be gently sanded by gluing a piece of 180 or 150 grit sandpaper on a piece of 1/4 inch thick glass so you can gently rub the wood on the flat sandpaper till it fits BUT you have to find a compromise because if you take off too much from the loose piece and the leg then you loose the fit at the edges. it is a balancing act to be sure.
to glue in place is tricky. the glue makes the surfaces slick and the wood does not want to stay in place. do not use gorilla glue!!!! use a brown titebond glue. to hold the pieces in place, use hose clamps but wrap the wood with a piece of leather or cork sheet before clamping so you do not mar the wood.
hope this helps.
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The expert provided a very quick and an extremely helpful response. His response was so thorough that I truly don't have any more questions at this time. And I'm very grateful he emphasized what glue not to use as I originally intended to use Gorilla glue but won't now. Thank you.
Regarding American antique, vintage, and collectible furniture I can help with wood identification, styles, age, periods, historical coatings, materials, techniques, repair, restoration, refinishing.
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I have been in the antiques furniture and restoration business and in the sales of American antique furniture for 40+ years and have continued my education in the trade attending workshops and seminars through several organizations.
Organizations Professional Refinishers Groop, Int., AIC, Antiques Dealers Association
Education/Credentials BA Florida State University
BA University of West Florida 1971