Need help taking apart a headboard

by JasperNLuann
(Charlotte NC)

Q:


We just purchased an Antiques Roadshow king bedroom set. The headboard is TOO big to move upstairs to the master bedroom. We want to know the LEAST invasive way to take the headboard apart.

It appears to have been screwed/glued. We can remove the screws, but want to be able to remove the glue just enough to take the headboard apart to get it into our room. Rubber mallet?? Heat the glue??

We would appreciate any ideas/suggestions you may have.

Thank you

Jasper & Luann

A:
Oh boy, what a nightmare.

First a disclaimer - I don't work with antiques and I rarely do any refinishing.

Having said that, if it is an antique the chances are good that it is put together with hide glue. If that's the case it will soften with heat. However, you want to be careful not to damage the finish as you heat the wood.

I think you probably have the right idea. I'd go with heat (perhaps a hairdrier) and a mallet. The other possibility, instead of a mallet, is to use a clamp as a spreader and slooowly tighten it to pull the pieces apart.

If you get any splitting or splintering save those splinters and glue them back using masking tape as a clamp. But, ignore that last, you won't have splits because you will go slowly and carefully.

Good luck!

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