Friday, January 18, 2013

Welcome to Fast Fix Fridays: How to Fill a Hole in Wood

Fridays are a great day for short, sweet and to the point aren't they?  I think so too.  So without further ado, here's a quick tip for fixing up an old piece of wood to look like new.  I use this technique to fill in screw holes on the underside of coffee tables when I flip them over to use as pet beds fill holes left by handles on drawer fronts that I turn into chalkboard signs

Fronts of old drawers used as isle markers at mom's pet shop

and to just do plain old repairs when chunks go missing from old furniture and the like.

Here's what you'll need:

1.  Water Putty - I'm using Durham's, but any will do
2.  Water - Less than a teaspoon or so for one hole
3.   Something to mix in - I'm using a plastic cup
4.   Something to stir with - I'm using a scrap piece of a wooden dowel
5.   Something with a flat edge to smooth out the putty - if you don't have a putty knife you can use a plastic knife or even the side of a spent gift card

A word of caution:  This stuff dries fast!  You only want to make as much as you can apply in ten minutes.  Otherwise you'll be throwing a lot of it a away.  

In your mixing cup add a small amount of water putty (it's in powder form) with a small amount of water and stir.  The instructions tell you that you want to add equal parts based on WEIGHT not volume.  I don't weigh it, I wing it.  I add just enough water to get this consistency:

If it's too runny it'll end up all over your project, too dry it'll crumble and require a lot of sanding before you paint over it and you'll probably need to reapply.

Now it's ready to use!  Simply fill your hole and level the surface with your straight-edged implement.  Let it dry completely (about 30 minutes depending on the size of the hole), sand it smooth and paint.


If you used a disposable plastic cup for mixing, cleanup is a cinch and NOT because you can simply throw the cup away either.   Wait for the leftover putty to harden and squeeze the lower sides of your cup.  Watch the hardened putty just crumble to pieces into your cup.  Dump it and reuse your cup for the next hole filling project!  You'll want to wipe the excess off your other instruments right away though, while it's still wet and then rinse it clean.

Now that you know this little secret, what will you rescue from hitting the landfill?

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