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Forum topic by jmurf posted 09-15-2021 03:27 AM 201 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View jmurf's profile


22 posts in 798 days

09-15-2021 03:27 AM

Topic tags/keywords: finish wax arm-r-seal sapele scratches

Newer woodworker appreciates a little advice. I built the table below for my sister from Sapele. I am not sure what happened but I have a few spots on the top I would like to fix.

The second and third photos show a close up and a wider shot. From some angles and certain light you can not see the spots at all.

My finishing was as follows. From Jeff Jewitt. Step one was a brown mahogany trans tint dye to darken the sapele. Step two was a coat of arm r seal – seal a cell. Step three was 4 coats of arm r seal. Last step was a little paste wax applied with a white pad.

I sanded with 320 between all steps. I must have gotten aggressive in those two spots but I did not notice it whatever way the light hit it.

I know I need to get the wax off but after that how would you go about the fix.

Thanks for the advice. Photos attached.

5 replies so far

View BlasterStumps's profile


2116 posts in 1655 days

#1 posted 09-15-2021 03:42 AM

to my untrained eyes it looks like the stain is still there, the arm r seal is still there. Don’t know anything about arm r seal but can it be buffed?

Just wanted to add, man, that is a pretty piece of furniture! Nice work.

-- "I build for function first, looks second. Most times I never get around to looks." MIke in CO

View Sycamoray's profile


96 posts in 456 days

#2 posted 09-15-2021 03:48 AM

Some experienced refinishers and furniture restorers have the ability to tone match small spots like these.

I can’t. When faced with my own mistakes of similar scale and type, I tried and failed. I ended up having to strip the entire surface (but not sides or other shelves) down to bare wood. Then reapply the same sequence and take greater care to not sand through the layers. And repeat after I did sand through a second time. After that, I stayed away from stains for over a decade.

Good luck!

View SMP's profile


4728 posts in 1121 days

#3 posted 09-15-2021 03:49 AM

How long did you wait between coats of ArS and then after the last coat before the paste wax?

View jmurf's profile


22 posts in 798 days

#4 posted 09-15-2021 03:59 AM

Blaster, thanks for the comment on the work.
Sycamoray, thanks for the idea. Maybe I can find a furniture medic in the area to show it to.
SMP, It took a full week to complete the finishing. I waited a day between each step. Thanks

View Rich's profile


7369 posts in 1805 days

#5 posted 09-15-2021 04:32 AM

If those spots were high enough to sand through the color, did you see any exposed wood under there?

Remember that this is pure speculation based on things I see in the photos. First photo appears to show that you sanded through the dye. That’s the reason for my first question. If you breached the topcoat and into the wood, even slightly, it’s a repair that’s pretty easy to do. Since the dye won’t affect the surrounding topcoat, you can tone that spot to match. Dilute your dye down to 1/4 strength or less, and wipe it lightly in that area. The nice thing about dye is that it will continue to color the wood with successive applications. Keep going until you like the result.

The second photo shows an issue with sheen. If you sanded through the color, repeat the steps above. If not, another coat of Arm-R-Seal should fix it.

Worst case, sand and refinish. It happens to all of us one time or another.

For the record, there’s no need to sand between coats unless you’re outside the recoat window, or have nibs or other flaws to deal with.

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

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