F-ing rocking chair broke again last night. Today I took a piece of aluminum strip and fabricated a brace to run around the end of the hanger, which should help to support the bearing and keep it from tearing loose. Gorilla glued the wood back together and added the support strap. If this thing breaks again it'll mean building or buying an entirely new hanger, though, because this one's just about had it.
Alternative is to take it to a furniture repair shop. $$, but probably not as much $$ as a new chair would be. This thing was about $300 in 1999, for crying out loud.
That hanger--the wood is 1" thick, about. Bearings are press-fit into 1/2" deep holes in the wood, and secured with wood screws, 2 for each bearing. Same with the other parts of the pedestal. Bolt goes through wood into bearing.
The problem is that the rear hanger takes most of the stress, and of course the wood grain is longitudinal. So the biggest stress is perpendicular to the grain, and it tends to pop a chunk of wood right off the end of the hanger.
I've been trying to figure out a better way to make a rear hanger for it. One idea was to make the wood thinner but then face it with 1/8" sheetmetal, glued to the wood with some high-strength epoxy. Getting the bearing hole size right would be the hard part. That would not break, and most of the actual strain at that end would be taken by the metal, rather than the wood.
This has been the sum total of my accomplishments for the day. I feel like crap.