Design & DIY

It’s time to finally fix that wobbly chair leg

The bottom of a chair leg, with furniture glides and washers to be attached. Photo by Liam Mogan

Who hasn’t had the annoying experience of using a wobbly table or chair? Let’s upgrade from jamming beer coasters and salt packets under the culprit leg to adding nail-on furniture glides with washers as shim-stock. Choose a glide diameter to suit the leg, along with washers of various thickness (no larger than the glide).

The first step: determine which leg needs lengthening. Set the wobbly item on the flattest surface available—tablesaw tops are ideal for chairs and small tables. Get eye level with the bottom of the legs, and inspect for gaps between them and the flat surface. Place a washer or two under the short leg until the wobble is calmed. If the gap is large, divide it in half by placing some washers under the gapped leg and others under the leg diagonally opposite.

Next: mark the centre of each leg bottom to locate the glide nail. Hammer home the glides with washers looped on the nail—one glide for each leg, but washers only where needed. At last, your furniture should now be wobble-free.

For hardwood floors, choose furniture glides with felt pads to prevent scratches.

This article was originally published in the May 2022 issue of Cottage Life magazine.

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