Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Armoire Finish - Restore Question

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Palm Springs, Ca
    Posts
    1,169

    Armoire Finish - Restore Question

    I got this antique armoire from some people that were moving. It was falling apart from every joint but all the pc's were there so i brought it home to restore. The interior of the unit was unfinished and alot of the joints were damaged. I repaired all the joints and refitted all the dovetail joints and started gluing it back together. The backing is new due to alot of the slats were missings so i bought some hardwood sheeting from Lowes and cut a new pc and fitted it into the back dado slots - It worked out nicely. Then I started coating the interior with Watco Oak Danish oil because it makes everything match nicely (more pictures later of the finish work).
    My question is this - The original finish is unknown and faded out bad. I am wondering if there is a easy way to restore the existing finish without having to sand the unit down. Some of the detail work would be difficult to sand and the unit is in good shape other than the finish being faded or worn looking.
    Any thoughts on a good way to fluff up the old finish on this unit ????
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Doors.jpg   Top.jpg   Unit-1.jpg   Unit-2.jpg  
    Last edited by Dan Mosley; 06-22-2009 at 05:30 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Catalunya
    Posts
    4,632
    First I would check with the aid of a scraper on a hidden part to find out whether the existing finish is a varnish or shellac type or oil type.

    If it was oil type I would use steel wool all over the piece and apply another coat, tung oil, linseed oil or similar.

    If it turns out that it is a varnish type, or the type of finish that stays on the surface of the wood you've got only to choices, scrap it off or give it another coat.

    My two cents.
    Best regards,
    Toni

    __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ _________________
    web site:http://www.toniciuraneta.com
    I also dream of a shop with north light where my hands can be busy, my soul rest and my mind wander...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Tokyo Japan
    Posts
    15,807
    Quote Originally Posted by Toni Ciuraneta View Post
    First I would check with the aid of a scraper on a hidden part to find out whether the existing finish is a varnish or shellac type or oil type.

    If it was oil type I would use steel wool all over the piece and apply another coat, tung oil, linseed oil or similar.

    If it turns out that it is a varnish type, or the type of finish that stays on the surface of the wood you've got only to choices, scrap it off or give it another coat.

    My two cents.
    Great advice Toni!

    Dan, that looks like it should restore very nicely!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    RETIRED(!) in Austintown, Ohio
    Posts
    5,323
    Quote Originally Posted by Toni Ciuraneta View Post
    First I would check with the aid of a scraper on a hidden part to find out whether the existing finish is a varnish or shellac type or oil type.

    If it was oil type I would use steel wool all over the piece and apply another coat, tung oil, linseed oil or similar.

    If it turns out that it is a varnish type, or the type of finish that stays on the surface of the wood you've got only to choices, scrap it off or give it another coat.

    My two cents.
    Great advice from Toni.

    The only thing I can add: If it's a film finish (not an oil) use a bit of denatured alcohol, in an inconpicuous place, to see if it softens/dissolves the existing finish. If it dissolves in alcohol, then the finish is shellac, an you can easily recoat it, since the new shellac will adhere to the old. Shellac is one of my favorite finishes - easy to use, and durable.

    If the alcohol doesn't soften/dissolve the finish, then it's probably a varnish of some sort, and it'll need sanding and recoating with a similar product.
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Outside the beltway
    Posts
    5,261
    Allot of the old Armoire's doweled together and the tops and bottoms were left unglued. Check and see if glue was used in these areas.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Palm Springs, Ca
    Posts
    1,169
    Thanks ill try to soften it like you suggested and let you know. Ill post more pictures as i go along ........thanks Dan

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    somewhere east of Queen Creek, AZ - South East of Phoenix
    Posts
    8,529

    If its not shellac

    Then I'd recommentd a product I use in my restoration business called "Dad's Easy Spray, varish, stain and paint remover". It come with a seperate spray bottle. just spay it on the area to be cleaned, let it set a few minutes then use a scrub brush to scrub out those carck and crevices. I usualy take a hose and spray off the area to get rid of any residue. Don't get it on your skin, ask me how I know...
    "There’s a lot of work being done today that doesn’t have any soul in it. The technique may be the utmost perfection, yet it is lifeless. It doesn’t have a soul. I hope my furniture has a soul to it." - Sam Maloof
    The Pessimist complains about the wind; The Optimist expects it to change;The Realist adjusts the sails.~ William Arthur Ward

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Outside the beltway
    Posts
    5,261
    Homedepot also has a spray can paint remover that works great.

Similar Threads

  1. Antique armoire rebuild project.
    By John Pollman in forum Flatwork Project Showcase
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 12-20-2012, 06:22 PM
  2. Finish Question
    By Rob Keeble in forum General Woodworking Q&A
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 07-03-2011, 12:04 AM
  3. maple armoire
    By Chris Mire in forum Flatwork Project Showcase
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 07-28-2009, 10:00 PM
  4. Computer Armoire' ideas?
    By Jeff Horton in forum General Woodworking Q&A
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 07-01-2008, 12:41 PM
  5. To finish or not to finish - That's the question!
    By Bruce Shiverdecker in forum General Woodturning Q&A
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 01-10-2007, 04:22 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •