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I recently bought a wooden lamp which is made from thin bent wood. Unfortunately it arrived with a large crack.

crack in the wood

Now I wonder what is the best way to fix it so that the crack is not or at least only barely visible if the lamp is turned on in the dark.

Light turned on

EDIT

I have to repair it, since I bought it second hand and the seller was not responding to my messages after the package arrived.

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    Hi, welcome to Woodworking. This may be impossible to repair effectively, and even more impossible (is that a thing? haha) to do invisibly. If you were a woodworker with some experience it might be possible to approach this using existing skills and materials and it might result in a good outcome, but even then there would be no guarantee in advance and I'm not sure about the long-term prospects for the bond. I'm sure one or more other responders here are going to advise seeking a return on this since it arrived broken, which of course it shouldn't have.
    – Graphus
    Commented Oct 31, 2022 at 16:49
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    Repairable, but really shouldn’t be your problem. If there is a reason you can’t return it, please edit your question to indicate that. Commented Oct 31, 2022 at 20:42
  • I agree, the best "repair" is to return it and request a replacement or refund. That's a pretty good looking lamp, though. I really like the idea. The vendor needs to work on packing prior to shipment.
    – FreeMan
    Commented Nov 1, 2022 at 16:46
  • @Graphus unfortunately it cannot be returned, since I bought it second hand.
    – TheIdealis
    Commented Nov 1, 2022 at 17:15
  • OK let's proceed as though you must do the repair yourself. In case it wasn't evident 100% chance that this has to be taken off the lamp to do the work (the repair being done flat), and obviously it needs to be reinstalled securely afterwards.... can you see how this could be done? Because if not you're dead in the water right there. Assuming it can be removed, TBH I'm a long-time tinkerer/problem solver, now do woodwork as my sole hobby, and I would be hesitant to take this on for someone else! I am not at all sure I could do this with the requirement for it to be invisible or barely visible.
    – Graphus
    Commented Nov 1, 2022 at 17:27

2 Answers 2

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First, if this was an eBay transaction, you might have recourse that doesn’t depend on the seller responding.

If you still want to proceed, I don’t think you need a lot of complicated materials and tools for this repair.

Get in behind the shade and run vertical strips of 2” wide masking tape that pull the crack closed. Check your work with the light on. Then run a horizontal strip (still on the interior) to cover the crack completely.

With a brown-tint wood glue (titebond 2 or 3, for example) and a very fine applicator (a syringe would be ideal, but a toothpick would work in a pinch), make a thin bead of glue at the crack. Wipe the excess glue flush and then gently swab with a slightly water dampened rag to further remove the excess. Let this dry.

Carefully remove the tape from the inside and see how it looks. You might want to repeat the gluing sequence with tape on the exterior.

Once you’re done gluing, if you have light leakage, you can use a fine point touch up marker to block the light.

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    Sounds like a great plan. I cannot do it this weekend, but I'll do it next week and let you know how it went!
    – TheIdealis
    Commented Nov 2, 2022 at 15:41
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    Apologies AD, but [Spock]I calculate a 6.2% chance of success[/Spock]
    – Graphus
    Commented Nov 3, 2022 at 18:37
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Looks cool, but it just seems like an inherently fragile design. Which is probably why you don't see more of these lamps. The other comments here are focused on getting it back to its original condition, or similar - which would be difficult. But what if instead you try to make something new out of it?

Detach one of the broken halves, and re-attach it slightly higher or lower so it overlaps the other broken half. I can't see the sides or back of the lamp, so I don't know how the strips are attached - if they're glued on, detaching them without damage might be difficult.

Or cut some opaque flexible material (maybe thin cardboard) into a strip about 1 inch wide, and attach it behind the crack so it blocks the light. Most people will look at that and think it's part of the design.

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  • Great idea, that is definitely an option if my repair effort fails!
    – TheIdealis
    Commented Nov 5, 2022 at 14:57

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