Michael Dresdner

straight talk about wood finishing

Archive for the 'refinishing' Category

Matching Martin

Tuesday, June 8th, 2010

Q: I’m restoring a Martin guitar, and after staining, I added three very light wash coats of 1lb. cut shellac. I’d like to strike the pores black with Finishers Glaze seal with sanding sealer, fill pores with Bartley’s dark, seal and topcoat. Martin mahogany pores are darkened nicely. I’m trying to do it the right [...]

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Proof of the pudding?

Thursday, June 3rd, 2010

Q: Is the resistance to strippers a sure indicator of a polyester finish or does it merely suggest it? A: It suggests it, but is not an indicator of polyester alone; it is merely an indicator that the finish is highly cross linked. Polyester is probably the most common of the highly cross linked finishes [...]

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Polyester problems

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

Q: Short of sanding it off, is there any way to remove a polyester finish from guitar sides? A: Yes, but it might be faster and easier to sand or scrape it off. For guitars with solid sides, you can make the job easier by working it off with a heat gun. When heated, polyester [...]

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Take it off

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

Q: What product can you suggest to remove hempseed oil and beeswax from a table top? A: That depends on how long the hempseed oil was on, and whether or not it was mixed with beeswax or merely applied prior to it. If it was not on long, or if it was mixed with wax, [...]

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Wax on, wax off

Wednesday, May 5th, 2010

Q: My oak floor has a factory wax finish from 1982. Can it be refinished using a polyurethane? How do you know the wax is completely removed? A: Scrubbing the floor thoroughly with mineral spirits on a nylon abrasive pad and wiping the residue with paper shop towels will remove any surface wax. After that, [...]

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Strip resistant finish

Friday, April 2nd, 2010

Q: I’ve been in the refinishing business for years, but have just been stumped and need your help. An end table stained red mahogany was brought in for top only refinish due to white water stains splattered all over the surface. It had a very hard semi gloss sheen-finish on it. After stripping, I’ve found [...]

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Fisheye follies

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Q: I’m refinishing a mahogany end table. After stripping the old finish, I washed it down with paint thinner then applied a coat of polyurethane. The finish did not take in some areas. I believe it’s called fisheye. I applied a second coat and it seem to fill in some of the spots but enough [...]

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Not all strippers are created equal

Wednesday, November 18th, 2009

Q: We are redoing our kitchen cabinets, and tried to remove the finish with Citristrip Stripping Gel. We waited, but had a really hard time getting it off so we stopped and waited a few days. Sanding makes the paper gummy. Is there any easy ways to get this junk off? A: Yes, and you [...]

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Friday, November 6th, 2009

Q: I have a 40 year old dining table with much sentimental value. A refinisher ruined the reddish color many years ago. The two leaves were not refinished. I’d like to restore the entire table to its beautiful original color. The wood is in good condition but the color is blotchy. I believe the finish [...]

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