Fixing split in benchtop

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    My benchtop has been resting against the wall while I make the other workbench components, and after a sudden drop in humidity it has split at the middle glue joint on one edge. The split is 1mm wide, 2 cm deep and 12 cm long.

    I tried clamping it to see if it would close but it doesn’t move at all.

    Should I just fill it with woodfiller or epoxy and move on, or is it a better solution to cut out a slot and patch it with another piece of wood?

    I appreciate any hints or help anyone can offer.

    P McC

    Hi AT, You certainly could use wood filler. But that may not be strong enough. I would use thickened epoxy, but I am a boatbuilder, biased toward epoxy. Another solution would be wood glue thickened with wood powder. All easier than cutting a slot and fitting a strip of wood. Perhaps not as neat looking as the wood strip.

    Jim Thornton

    I agree. Fill it with thickened epoxy and build on. It’s just a workbench and I bet you won’t notice the fix when you’re happily cutting dovetails, tenons and mortises on it! Someday, when you develop the skills, inlay some fancy wood in that spot.


    If you can't afford to do big small things in a big way!

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by Jim Thornton.

    Thank you both for the tips!

    I’ve never had much luck with sawdust+glue as filler, but I’ll give epoxy a try and see how it goes 🙂

    Larry Geib

    Thicken the epoxy a little with wood flour or my favorite, carbon black. Overfill it a little and sand back flush for a mat finish.

    Then put a couple butterfly keys in the top and plane them flush also to stabilize the crack. Taper the key a little for a tight fit.

    All the online tutorials I see show using a power router to let in the key, but it goes just as quick with a chisel and hand router ( or just chisels).

    The end result will look like you planned it all.

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