Joinery And Hardware

Joinery presents unique challenges to the outdoor furniture maker. Many of the standard joints used for indoor furniture are incapable of withstanding the abuses wrought by weather. The blind mortise-and-tenon joint, for example, is normally an excellent choice for joining chair rails and legs, but it does not fare well outdoors. Water can become trapped in the mortise, causing the joint to swell and leading to wood decay. A variation on the same joint, the through mortise-and-tenon (page 19), solves that problem by allowing water to drain out. Cutting angled shoulders helps prevent water from becoming trapped. Lap joints and rabbet joints also work well. For extra protection against water, you can coat the mating surfaces of joints with a preservative such as pine tar or an adhesive caulking compound.

Outdoor furniture makes frequent use of fasteners to connect components.

Choosing the right hardware is an important part of building outdoor furniture that will last. Chain and eye-hooks suspend hanging furniture, such as porch swings. Lag bolts, threaded rods and cross dowels join projects together. Make sure you select corrosion-resistant hardware, such as galvanized stainless steel or bronze.

Make sure you choose ones that are either made from—or coated with—a metal that will not rust. Iron fasteners will eventually weaken or break; they also stain the wood.

Glues play an important part in most joinery, and here again, weather affects your choices. Standard yel low carpenter's glue is not waterproof and will eventually fail when exposed to the elements. Instead, select a specialized glue designed for outdoor use, such as resorcinol and epoxy-base adhesives. The former is somewhat easier to use, but epoxy has useful gap-filling properties.


Epoxy Weatherproof; creates Requires mixing before use; sets Expensive extremely strong bond quickly, requiring quick assembly

Resorcinol Weatherproof; extremely Dries to a reddish colour; requires Expensive strong long clamping time

Weatherproof Weatherproof; strong Do not use standard, non-waterproof Inexpensive yellow glue version of this glue

Cross-linking PVA Weatherproof; forms One-part adhesive; good gap-filling Inexpensive glue (Titebond II) extremely strong bond ability; relatively quick drying time

Plastic resin Water-resistant; strong Requires long clamping time; Inexpensive requires a topcoat for protection

How To Sell Furniture

How To Sell Furniture

Types Of Furniture To Sell. There are many types of products you can sell. You just need to determine who your target market is and what specific item they want. Or you could sell a couple different ones in a package deal.

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