Removing Watco wipe on poly

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Forum topic by Peace posted 04-17-2017 10:25 PM 937 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Peace's profile


18 posts in 1390 days

04-17-2017 10:25 PM

Topic tags/keywords: sanding

I have plywood tables on which I used Watco Natural Danish oil. Over that I used 2 coats of Watco wipe on poly. The Danish finish job has proved to be poor, and I would like to remove it. Can I first remove the poly by some means other than sanding before I sand off the Danish?

2 replies so far

View Rich's profile


5724 posts in 1399 days

#1 posted 04-17-2017 11:06 PM

You could use a stripper, but that’s messy. Wipe on poly doesn’t build that much, especially just 2 coats. I’d sand it.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

View JayCee123's profile


200 posts in 1574 days

#2 posted 04-18-2017 12:12 AM

You have a couple problems here. Poly is a bear to remove and if you remove sanding from your options that leaves a chemical stripper or scraping. Chemical removal is messy and your dealing with potentially dangerous chemicals. Scraping involves labor and technique, but at least you can move at your own speed. The scrapers are a cheap investment. Once the poly topcoat is removed you will have an oil which has penetrated below the surface. You probably wouldn’t be able to remove the oil. You’ll need to color the surface to hide the oil discoloration or blend with a tinted oil. After you’ve blended lay on a coat of de-waxed shellac, then proceed with a clear coat.
Re consider sanding, as RichTaylor indicated. As a second, I would use a card scraper, not a paint scraper. You’ll have better control and less cuts into the plywood surface. Stay away from strippers unless you have some experience using them.

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