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I have a pedestal dinette table and the top is held in place by 4 threaded inserts into wood the screwed in place. My problem is the threaded inserts will not hold and before you know it the table tops rocks up and down and from side to side. How can I get the inserts to stay put?

  • What do you think might be causing the threaded inserts to be loosened? Are the flanges on the insert pulling away from or otherwise damaging the wood around the insert? – fred_dot_u Aug 31 at 19:26
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    If you can pull the inserts out, you could put them back in with epoxy. (Just be sure to have a screw in the threads and a small blob of something like wax to keep the epoxy out of the end.) – Aloysius Defenestrate Aug 31 at 21:54
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    Very much +1 on epoxying them back in, but if you're using unthickened epoxy you should really do this with the tabletop removed and flipped over, lying on a clean sheet or towel to protect the surface. Wait a day before reinstalling, regardless of the epoxy's setting time. – Graphus Aug 31 at 22:28
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    Added to what the others said a little CA glue around the insert. If the table top ed particle board it will need something to reinforce the fibers soak the the area around the hole with a thin epoxy, CA glue, or other hardener – Monte Glover Sep 1 at 2:27
  • Threaded inserts provide racking strength primarily through a snug fit between the butt-end of the material that screws into the insert. The insert and bolt hardware has to be sized appropriately for the dimensions of the pieces being joined, and there should be sufficient torque applied to the fastener to keep it from racking. This is why a lot of table legs attached in this manner are round -- it's just easier to snug things 1/4 turn. If the legs are allowed to rack, they will torque at the joint and eventually work their way out. – jdv Sep 11 at 15:51
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Epoxy will work as mentioned in the comments. There are two other possibilities I can think of. One is to drill out the area where the threaded inserts are and glue in a dowel. Once that glue is cured, drill the proper hole to fit the threaded insert. This is a good general solution to many situations where a screw no longer holds. The other option is to find a threaded insert with a matching inside diameter that has a larger outside diameter.

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