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What is the best way to restore this glued together box?


I found an art box at a thrift store. From the logo and wood, I'm guessing it's from the 50's or earlier.  The finish isn't plastic.

The joints are loose and the top piece is coming away from the sides of the lid.   What are the steps for putting it back together?  Gluing and clamping comes to mind, but how does one get the glue into the cracks?

The partitions are glued in. The partition spaces aren't ideal. Is there a fairly easy way to un-glue them so they could be rearranged?

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aeray3 years ago
I get syringes and needles from the local veterinarians. It helps if you have an ongoing relationship with them so that they don't think your some kind of crackhead who wants needled for some nefarious reason.
aeray aeray3 years ago
And using a compressor and a "puffer" nozzle will blow glue into the tiniest crack or crevice.
mole1 (author)  aeray3 years ago
Syringe and (probably) needle are possible. I used to load an ink brush with them. So that's more or less what a glue injector is? Don't have a compressor. Don't know what a 'puffer' nozzle is, but could it be faked by blowing with a straw?
aeray mole13 years ago
A puffer is just a air nozzle. A straw might work, but you might pass out. I'd try using "canned air" (like Dustoff) but you'll have to be careful not to freeze the glue.

As far as removing the old glue goes, you may have to experiment. What does the old glue look like? If it is translucent/clearish brown, it might be hide glue which can be removed with hot water, or just a heat gun, if you're lucky.
mole1 (author)  aeray3 years ago
You describe the glue perfectly. It's a clearish red/brown. The box got rained on on my way home, and everything was much more loose when it dried out.
aeray mole13 years ago
Try using a small amount of warm water with a dash of vinegar. Or, a heat gun or maybe even a soldering iron, for small areas, although I haven't tried the last one. Remember, hide glue is the original hot glue, so once you get it melted, work fast.
mole1 (author)  aeray3 years ago
Thanks, aeray! I had no idea hide glue was heat sensitive. It turns out that my brushes fit, so for the moment, I'm planning to leave the partitions. I'm going to file your information away, though, just in case.
aeray mole13 years ago
How did the re-glueing go?
mole1 (author)  aeray3 years ago
Haven't done it yet. I got the glue Saturday, though. We had sunshine yesterday and some time without rain today, so things outside had to be done... like get the strawberries into the ground. I hope to get to it this week.
aeray aeray3 years ago
Just slop the glue on the crack, and puff it in with the canned air. Don't "hose it down" full-force, just puff at it until the crack is full. And clamp it if possible. Blue painter's masking tape, liberally applied, makes a remarkably effective and cheap clamp for awkward parts and joints.
Vyger aeray3 years ago
In many rural areas farm supply stores carry all kinds of vet supplies. I used syringes to re ink my printer for many years. Would have made interesting tattoos if anybody tried to use them for injecting anything.
Burf3 years ago
Go to a craft store and get a large bore glue injector. Use yellow carpenter's glue(PVA) and clamp or weight the pieces down until the glue dries.
caarntedd Burf3 years ago
+1. You need to force the glue into the gaps, clamp the joints together, and wipe off the excess glue that oozes out with a damp cloth before it dries. Nice box.
mole1 (author)  caarntedd3 years ago
Thanks to you both, Burf and caarntedd. I didn't know about glue injectors. I'll keep a damp cloth at hand when I do it.