How to Repair a Cracked Solid Wood Table Top
If you have a crack in your solid wood tabletop, then you may despair of ever being able to restore it. However, in almost all cases, it is possible to manage some kind of repair. You can have this fixed by a professional, in which case you will probably have to pay a large amount of money to get the job done, or you can try to fix this yourself using a few simple woodworking methods, and following these simple instructions.
Step 1 - Examine the Damage
In order to decide what you are going to do with the crack, you need to examine it closely and carefully. The position and depth of the crevice are important in deciding how you will manage a repair. If it is just caused by the movement of the wood, you may be able to get away with a simple patch. A tear, caused by damage, can be more difficult, but you will still be able to fix it. If the crack just seems too big to manage, then you may need to cut down the table using a saw and convert it into something else. However, try making the repairs before you make any drastic decisions.
Step 2 - Use Shims for a Small Crack
Since this damage may have been caused by the movement of the wood in the changing seasons, you may need to wait for a period before starting the fix, but a few simple household items should be all you need.
Begin by smoothing down the sides of the crack with sandpaper. Then, add some bevel shims. These need to be glued into the crack so cut them down to the correct size before proceeding. Once the shims are in, you can then cover the rest of your table with masking tape, and spray a suitably dark lacquer or epoxy paint onto the wood. Allow to this dry.
Step 3 - Fit Plywood into a Large Crack
If the crack is large enough that you think a few shims will not solve the problem, then you need to cut a piece of wood to fit it instead. You can use any cheap wood, such as plywood, to make the piece. Slide it into the sanded-down crack, and then apply a layer of black lacquer or resin and leave it to dry.
Step 4 - Reuse it if All Else Fails
In the event that the table is beyond repair, for example, if the crack extends over most of the table and all the way through the wood, then the best solution is to cut it down and reuse it elsewhere. Cut off the remaining part of the table, and sand it down. You can then reduce the legs so that you have a smaller, but still usable, table.