The setting: A nice, quiet dinner with a little music in the background. A wonderful meal on the table, fresh out of the oven. And then, a terrible sound, as if a small avalanche of snow is falling off the roof to the deck, and onto the ground below.
Sandy and I looked at each other, nodded as if saying to each other “…could be the cat in the living room…” Sandy actually said it. We continued eating our nice meal. Forward three hours, time for bed, time to put some clothes in the hamper in the closet. The entire left wall of clothes is on the floor, the result of a failed oak rack – the failure occurred at the finger joints:
Here is the interesting part: Once opened, the joint showed no evidence of glue ever having been applied on any surface:
How could this joint have survived the weight of two huge, fully-loaded shoe racks, plus the weight of heavy clothes? Even more amazing: This part of the rack, about a 3-foot span, was held in place by less than 1/2-inch of a very small screw actually in the wood. I remember putting up the rack in a hurry, as a permanent installation at least seven years ago, and not even wondering about this deficiency…wow!
The repair: I ripped a 1-1/2 inch wide strip, 1-inch thick piece of white oak, rounded all four corners, and installed it using T-straps with three screws to the top part of the rack. The screws securing the new rack are just over an inch into the white oak. I think this repair is likely to last a good while longer than the original.
— Al Navas