How to Replace Solid Wood Chair Spindles

What You'll Need
Punch rod
Replacement spindles
Non-slip cloth
Wood filler
Wood glue
Tape measure

Part of the strength and stability of a chair comes from the chair spindles, which are mainly used to form the back of a traditional chair. Being able to replace the spindles can help you to return the chair to its original condition rather than throwing it out. Following some steps will enable you to complete this project without the assistance of a professional.

Step 1 – Examination  

Commence the project with an examination of the chair, which will help you determine how to remove the existing chair spindles. If the chair is one in which you have assembled yourself, you may find it easier to recognize how it all fits together. Alternatively, you may have the manual to assist you. Check for any movement that may affect the spindles, which will make them easier to remove. No matter what type of chair, check how the spindles are attached, such as just fitted into a recess or glued into place.   

Step 2 – Remove Spindles

The existing chair spindles must be removed to enable the new ones to be fitted in their place. If it is possible to undertake some disassembly, this will make it easier to release the spindles. Carefully remove any screws or bolts holding the chair together and safely set them aside. In some cases, you will simply be able to wrap a cloth around the spindle and twist it from place. However, if they are firmly in place, use a hammer and punch to force them from place.  

Step 3 – Rectify

If there has been any damage to the recesses that hold the chair spindles, this will need to be repaired prior to proceeding. If they have suffered any splits, repair this using a small amount of wood filler and allow the filler to dry before proceeding. Use sandpaper to clean up any rough edges on the body of the chair and on the spindles. Measure the recess holes to ensure that the ends of the spindles will fit within them. Test the spindles within the recesses to ensure that they fit snugly and are of the correct length. Measure again and use a hacksaw to cut any of the replacements that prove to be too long.    

Step 4 – Install

Apply a small amount of wood glue into both recesses in which you intend to fit the first spindle. Fit the new chair spindles by firmly pushing into place, wiping away any excess glue that becomes displaced. Where the chair has been disassembled for the purpose, carefully slot the removed section back into place and check that all the spindles are correctly aligned. You will then be in a position to insert the fasteners and secure them with a screwdriver or wrench. Check that they are not capable of any movement once they have been secured.