I built a cabinet with dovetails on all four corners. How do you recommend repairing the small chips and gaps in some of the dovetail joints?


-- Benny Collins , Via Ask The Experts , None


My latest trick for filling cracks and dings is to make a little mound of sanding dust from the same wood as the project, put a few drops of 1-lb.-cut, dewaxed shellac into the mound, stir it into a paste, and rub the paste into the cracks.

Immediately sand the area with 220-grit paper. Make a fresh mixture of paste, and repeat the process (immediately). You might have to do this three or four times before the repair is level with the surrounding wood. But because shellac dries so fast, you should be able to fill the cracks in one five-minute bench session.

Initially the cracks will look darker than the surrounding wood, but when you apply your finish they will blend right in.

From Fine Woodworking #191 April 24, 2007