January 18, 2011

Fixing chair rung
Photo by Jim Ruen
Fixing chair rungs is easy and reliable with the help of Woodmate’s Mr. Grip.

If you live in a northern climate, you probably share one of my winter frustrations. It seems like a chair rung or two come loose each winter. A combination of age and the drier winter air is likely to blame.

Fixing chair rungs used to be an exercise in frustration. Glue alone was a wasted effort, at times not lasting even through another winter. Placing toothpicks in the hole with the glue helped, but it also wasn’t a long term fix. Then my wife saw Woodmate’s Mr. Grip in a catalog.

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The furniture-repair kit consists of four, 1-inch long, 1/4-inch wide metal strips with holes punched through from either side. The result is rough areas on each side of the metal strip. When placed over the end of the chair rung before it is pushed into the hole, the strip anchors itself in the wood fiber of both the hole and the rung tip.

Using Mr. Grip is almost too easy. The thin metal is easily cut with a regular scissors. I trim off a piece that fits both sides and the end of the chair rung. Holding Mr. Grip over the end, I slide the rung back into the hole on the leg. That’s it! The metal grabs hold and simply doesn’t let go.

In the nearly 10 years I’ve been using these handy grips, I am only now beginning to see potential repeat offenders. Even these have the potential to be “fixed” with the use of a second strip across the first.

The company makes multiple sizes or different situations. In my case, one pack has lasted for years. If you have loose chair rungs or other wood-to-wood connections that have come loose, check out Mr. Grip at your local hardware store.

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