We bought an old oak table that came with 2 leaves each 2' x 5' x 1". One is bowed slightly on one end. Is there a way to flatten that end?

  • 2
    Welcome to WW.SE! Can you upload a picture to show the extent of the bowing?
    – mmathis
    Jun 5 '18 at 19:14
  • As already requested a couple of photos of the problem would be useful, they'll help with more direct suggestions rather than generic advice. Also could you give an idea of any clamps you have? Some clamping is nearly invariably required to fix a problem like this, although very heavy weights can be used sometimes instead clamps work better and are easier to place correct so if you don't own any you'd need to buy or borrow some.
    – Graphus
    Jun 8 '18 at 16:05

There are two possibilities:

  1. Add a bracing bar to the bottom of the table that holds the board flat. The table is clamped strongly to bend out the bow, then the board is screwed into the brace. The supports for the table have to be strong and rigid for this to work.

  2. Flatten the board itself. To do this, the board is removed from the table and soaked in a trough of water for 48 hours. Then the board is clamped to a rigid and flat surface while it dries. Ideally the board should be allowed to dry in a room that has a dehumidifier so that the air in the room is very dry. When the board is perfectly dry, it is removed from the clamps and shellacked so that it cannot absorb water (which would cause it to bow again).

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.