Refinishing Wood Tips

by Walter Dennis
(Arizona)


Refinishing Wood Tips; An old finish, even if it is doll find scratched, can sometimes be rejuvenated without stripping and refinishing. If it can, you stand to save a great deal of time and energy. Completely refinishing a piece of furniture can be rewarding, hut it is time consuming and requires care. Few hard and fast rules can be given as to whether a particular surface needs refinishing. Qualities that some may find desirable—such as distress marks, stains, and imperfections in an antique rocker nay be unacceptable to others. In the long run, if the topcoat does not have extensive cracks, flakes, or blisters, the decision depends on your own taste. To establish the condition of the finish, you must clean it thoroughly. Use benzine (not lobe confused with benzene, or benzol). Soak a soft, clean cloth in benzine and wipe over the surface. Use fresh cloths and more benzine until the surface is absolutely clean.


Then wipe it dry. Once the dirt has been removed, you may find that the finish is in fine condition, in which case you need only protect it with a good furniture polish. Apply a furniture cleanser-conditioner before using the polish. The conditioner will help restore the natural grain and color of On. wood, cover up minor scratches, and condition the furniture against dryness and heat. II the topcoat is shellac, use a conditioner that does not contain water, since water will damage it. More refinishing wood tips

Further restoration' Shot dd cleaning and waxing fail to revive the finish, you will shave to take further steps. First, find out whether the topcoat is shellac, varnish, or lacquer.

Testing the finish: Pick an inconspicuous spot and test it with denatured alcohol and lacquer thinner. Use only a drop of each. Alcohol will dissolve shellac: thinner will blister varnish. A lacquer finish will be mildly affected by thinner and not at all by alcohol.

New topcoat: A finish that is worn but adhering well can be beautifully restored with a new topcoat. To get the new coat to adhere well you must remove the gloss on the old finish. Use No. 4/0 steel wool and rub the entire piece gently but thoroughly, always following the grain. This will slightly abrade the surface. Directions for brushing on the new topcoat. Glazing: The old finish t nay be in good yet look faded and dull. To help revive the color and hide minor blemishes, wipe on a thin glaze of diluted stain before applying a new topcoat. Let the stain dry for at least 24 hours. Apply a sealer coat, then a topcoat of clear varnish. More refinishing wood tips

Minor scratches: A small scratch in the finish that does not penetrate the wood can be repaired very easily. Alt 121 cleaning the area thoroughly and determining the type of finish used, apply a little of the appropriate solvent with a slim II brush. Move the brush diagonally along the scratch and feather out toward the edges. This will dissolve the finish and allow it to Mend over the scratch. Let the area dry thoroughly, then rub with a clean, lint free cloth. IF necessary, wait 24 hours and repeat the procedure.

When dry, rub smooth to match the surrounding area and bull' with wax. Deep scratches: If a scratch cuts through the finish and into the wood, the piece will probably need restaining all of it. You can use commercially available colored wax sticks, you will get better. results with oil stain or acrylic artist's paints. First, clean t he area with benzine. Then, touch up the scratch to blend- it with the surrounding area. Let the touch up stain dry overnight. The next day, apply solvent as described above to blend the finish. If the scratch is very deep, you will need to build up the finish to make it flush with the surface. Using a fine brush, apply several thin coats of dilute finishing material. Limit the application to the scratch. Let each coat dry before applying the next. Once the scratch has been repaired, clean the entire surface thoroughly and apply a new topcoat to the surface to protect the finish and it I lend the repair into its surroundings. Thanks for reading this page on refinishing wood tips

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