Solid Wood Table Top: Repair a Broken Corner

What You'll Need
Wood filler or wood putty
Putty knife
Plastic scraper tool with smooth edge
Soap and water
Finishing nails
Two six-inch pieces of 1 by 1-inch trim lumber
Sand paper
Wood stain or finish
Paint tools

If your solid wood table top is cracked or broken, you may be tempted throw out the table and buy a new one. However, while repairing a broken corner on a wood table top does take a little work, it is far from impossible. In fact, you can repair a broken corner in a couple of hours with some basic carpenter's tools. This handy how-to guide will show you how to repair the broken corner and make it look new again in no time at all.

Step 1 - Remove Chips and Debris

Use a chisel to gently break away any loose chips or wood debris in the broken corner. When using the chisel to remove the chips, it is best not to use a hammer unless it is absolutely necessary. Rather, simply push the chisel along the broken edges to remove shards of wood or splinters.

Step 2 - Rough Sand Surface

Take a low grit piece of sandpaper and rough-sand the area where the corner of the table is broken or chipped. At this point, you are not trying to smooth the surface, but are only trying to sand away any splinters or rough edges that the chisel could not remove.

Step 3 - Fill with Putty

Take a putty knife and fill the broken or chipped corner of the table with wood putty. When applying the putty, try to get the surface as flat as possible. However, don't worry about shaping the corner at this point. Refer to the directions on the can of putty and allow the wood putty to completely dry.

Step 4 - Sand Putty

Sand the corner of the broken tabletop again. This time, try to make the surface of the wood putty fairly smooth.

Step 5 - Shape Corner with Wood Putty

Again, began applying wood putty to the damaged area of the table top. This time, try to add the putty in a way that creates straight edges on the corner of the table. You will need to use the putty knife to smooth the edges of the corner and add putty in small increments.

Step 6 - Install Form Frame

While the putty is still wet, install the form frame on the corner of the tabletop. To do this, take two pieces of 1 by 1 wood trim and place them so that they form a 90-degree angle. Then, nail a finishing nail through one piece of the wood into the edge of the other piece. Then, align the form frame at on the corner of the tabletop and use finishing nails to secure it to the tabletop edge. The corner of the form frame may push in the wood putty that you formed earlier. If this occurs, don't worry about it.

Step 7 - Allow Putty to Dry

Allow the wood putty to completely dry.

Step 8 - Remove Corner Form Frame

Once the putty is dry, remove the form frame from the edge of the tabletop. You may need to use a claw hammer or pry bar to pry the form away from the tabletop.

Step 9 - Fill Nail Holes

Use a putty knife to fill the holes created by the form with wood putty.

Step 10 - Final Sanding

Use a high grit sandpaper to sand the entire surface of the repaired table top corner as well as the wood putty on the nail holes.

Step 11 - Finish

Paint or stain with the finish of your choice.