I'm making bird houses and I have been screwing the joints together. I have been drilling a pilot hole (2mm bit) and using 3mm X 30mm screws.

I hung one in my garden and noticed that a couple of joints appear to be coming apart slightly after around a month or so. The houses are finished with Cuprinol Shades outdoor paint and the wood is bare before I paint (no primer etc).

Is there a more effective way of joining end grain to prevent warping/movement? Would gluing the joints, using larger screws, a smaller pilot hole or priming the wood first help to prevent this? The joints are 30 and 45 degrees.


I don't know how much effort you want to put into a birdhouse, but consider some type of woodworking joint. Depending on the grain orientation at the joint, a glued spline joint might be easy enough, and give the strength you need.

Screws in end grain typically don't hold very well.

Here are some good illustrations of a variety of mitered joints, including a splined miter: http://www.craftsmanspace.com/knowledge/mitered-woodworking-joints.html

| improve this answer | |

the joint is coming apart because the wood has warped due to moisture. A miter joint will "work" if both pieces are sufficiently stabilized. You can achieve this using cross-grain battens screwed in on the underside.

| improve this answer | |

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.