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Posted on Filling gouges prior to refinishing dining table top.

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62 posts in 968 days


#1 posted 07-14-2017 02:24 AM



You can steam a dent; it will do nothing for a gouge. A dent compresses the fibers and sometimes steaming will cause them to swell back up, but if wood is gouged out, it won t work. Timbermate is a respected product, and you can blend colors to get a good match. I disagree with going darker — get it as close as you can and if it s a bit too light you can darken it when you dye it by using extra dye on that spot.

Since it s a tabletop, durability is key. I ve switched to doing hard fills with a variety of fill sticks and grain markers. The result is extremely durable and virtually invisible, but it wouldn t be worth getting into for just one job.

One tip is that irregularity along the edges of the fill is less noticeable than a clean, straight line. For example, if you are filling a round hole, it will blend in better if you take a knife or chisel and make it more elongated along the grain — not a perfect oval though. Same thing with a straight, clean gouge. By making the sides less regular, it will not be as noticeable because the eye is drawn to a clean line and it stands out. Again, go along the grain to help mask the edges.

I don t know what kind of wood it is and how pronounced the grain is, but if your fill looks too even in color and stands out, you can take a fine artist s paint brush and add extra dye to try to imitate the grain. It doesn t have to be exact, but just enough so it doesn t stand out.

Here s a video that shows an example of what I m saying. It uses burn-in sticks, but the concept of making the spot irregular is the same. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-xiyBjZuP_Q

- RichTaylor

This is so nice of you to write all this in detail !
Thank you so much !!!
This is very helpful!

I used burn-in sticks and actually bought almost all the colors, over 60 different colors and have used them a lot in the past.
Every day after work I go by the Woodcraft store or Rockler and buy more dyes, stains, varnishes, and so on… it is a never ending expense, but a wonderful hobby.

I also bought graining markers and graining pigments from Mohawk Co. and used a lot of it on furniture, especially recently after the kids grew up enough to be more aware of the furniture.
Now I can do a lot more.

Thank you Rich !

-- Julian Paul Jones


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