filling gaps between wood

17 Jul 2007
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United Kingdom

Before I ask my question I would like to underline the fact that this is my first real joinery project, no prior exp!

I am making a radiator cover for our nursery. Its by no means perfect but I am happy with it. The problem is there are a couple of bodges where I have made a mistake which has resulted in a lot more bits of wood screwed together which of course has caused a lot more gaps where the wood meets. I was just wondering if anyone can advise on the best method to hide these gaps? I have used decorators caulk in past attempts, which has filled the gap but the gap is still visible. Maybe I applied it wrong? or is there a better product I could use? any tips/advise would be much appreciated.
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Hi Blunda
We all get this from time to time, but decorators caulk is not the way to go here...its great stuff where it can be smoothed with a finger but it doesn't like to be sanded.
Go for some Polyfilla (ready mixed, in a tube if you like) and press it into the gap, leaving some of the filler proud. In a few hours the excess can be sanded away using glasspaper to give an invisible repair which will take an excellent paint finish.
John :)
Hi Burnerman

Thanks for your advise, much appreciated.

One thing that does concern me is the flexibility of the filler. being wood (MDF) and next to a radiator i was worried about the wood contracting and cracking the filler
High temperatures in any material mean a certain amount of expansion, as you suggest. However, MDF is not a natural material, therefore any distortion should be minimal. I think its safe to give it a go with the filler.
John :)
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Dec caulk shrinks while drying so you need to take this into account, I use it when making mdf items as it's great for getting consistent finish to internal corners when painting mdf.

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