How to Attach Parts to Your Antique Trunk


How to Attach Parts to Your Antique Trunk

Are you a collector, antique lover, or DIY enthusiast who has an interest in antique trunks? Whether you’re trying to restore an antique trunk or create a new one from scratch, it’s essential to know how to attach parts to your antique trunk correctly. 

Restoring an antique trunk is a labor of love, and sometimes it can feel like a juggling act. You’ve got your hammer, the part you’re trying to attach, the nails, and the nailing heel – all requiring your attention at the same time. 

But don’t worry, Brettuns Village are here to guide you through this process. Here are some tips and tricks to help you attach parts to your antique trunk with ease.

Tools You’ll Need

To attach parts to your trunk, you’ll need a few key items:

  • A good, heavy hammer
  • A nailing heel, which is a big hunk of flat metal like an old flat iron or auto body work dolly
  • Square-shank nails that are longer than the total thickness of the material you’re driving through

In theory, the process is straightforward. The nail goes through the wood and contacts the heel. The tip of the nail then bends back into the wood, giving the nail tremendous holding power.

In practice, it may take a few tries. But with patience and persistence, you’ll get there.

A Few Rules of Thumb

Here are some tips to help you navigate the process:

  • Nails should be at least 1/4″ longer than the TOTAL thickness of the materials you’re nailing through (wood, leather, metal parts) so that they clinch over properly. For instance, if you’re nailing through parts/boards that add up to 3/4″ thick, you need 1″ nails.
  • Tapping works a lot better than full force whacking. Hold the heel LOOSELY against the wood inside so that it bounces with every tap.
  • To replace a pair of handles and end caps, you’ll need about 20 nails. Replacing a lock requires about 10 nails, and replacing the lid stay requires two nails.
  • And remember, avoid using wood screws on an old trunk. Not only do they destroy the historical value of the piece, but they also violate the “Brettuns Village Law of Death Before Use of Screws” mandate.

Knowing how to attach parts to your antique trunk can be a satisfying and rewarding experience. With the right tools, hardware, and techniques, you can add new parts to your antique trunk or restore missing ones with ease. With these tips and tricks, you can confidently embark on your next project without any worries.
At Brettuns Village, we offer a wide range of trunk tools and hardware that you’ll need for your restoration project. Whether you’re attaching new parts or replacing old ones, our selection of tools will make your work easier and more rewarding.