11-02-2011 12:40 PM
I'd like to know how to repair a deep gouge in our beautiful oriental wood laminated dresser. It's a beautiful piece that my husband and I bought while stationed on Guam, but has been damaged because we've moved a lot. It now has a deep gouge on the top of the dresser, like a fork lift may have punctured it. Please help
11-02-2011 06:48 PM
Welcome to the community.
Being a woodworker for many years I’m really glad to hear that you are willing to fix your dresser instead of just replacing it.
I have a couple of questions for you that will determine the repair process.
1. Is it actually a gouge or is it a dent?
2. You said that it’s a wood laminated dresser. By that do you mean that its particle board with a wood veneer over it?
If it’s a dent and the top is solid wood then I have a solution that I think will work if you are patient. If the dent is less than 3/16”-1/4” deep than you might be able to get the wood fibers to swell enough by filling the damaged area with water and then letting it dry completely. (Make sure and only put the water in the dented area.) You can do this multiple times to get the fibers to swell enough to become even with the top again. Then sand it smooth and refinish the repaired area to match the rest. I know it sound weird but believe me it works. I had to do this process on a hope chest that I made many years ago and it worked great.
For larger defects I would use the wood epoxy and smaller repairs I would use Plastic Wood filler. They both can be sanded and stain just like real wood so either one would work great.
The plastic wood filler is easier to work with due to the epoxy comes in 2 different containers and it has to be mixed. But it will be worth it if the gouge is fairly large.
This should get your dresser back to the beautiful dresser that it was meant to be.
If you would like to post a picture of the damage I will gladly take a look at it and see if I could recommend anything different but I think this should get you on the right track.
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