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New basswood is added to all areas where the front leg has pieces missing. A variety of vises and clamps are used to reconstruct broken joints.

After stripping comes wood repair. New basswood is added to all the areas that are missing wood. The vacant spots are flattened and squared up. Paper patterns of the needed shapes are drawn, and the pieces are attached. This can be quite a challenge in some situations due to the complex angles and shapes. All types of wood clamps, pinch dogs, brand and strap clamps, drywall screws and even vise grips are used in different combinations to get the replacement wood attached. After the glue cures over night, the clamps, screws, etc., are removed and carving begins.

Next comes the legs. The back legs on the Dentzel are in the best shape, so this is a good place to start. Except for some minor wood loss, they are separated cleanly at the original joints. The original dowels are drilled out and joint surfaces sanded and reattached using new dowels and pinch dogs. The front legs need more attention. The hoof on the romance leg is rotted and most of the backside is gone. I use photographs for reference in making a pattern to recarve the hoof shape. I remove rot and add new bass wood in stages to recarve the hoof. The thigh of the other front leg is split in half, and the rest of the leg is broken and split in a number of places. To repair this, I force glue into the splits with a plunger type injector. The leg pieces are clamped and wedge shape wood shims of various thicknesses added to fill in any voids. Finally, the new wood in all four knee joints is recarved and sanded into shape.
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