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Forum topic by alleycatter posted 03-15-2014 02:38 PM 891 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2 posts in 2091 days

03-15-2014 02:38 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

Recently ‘inherited’ a bedroom set and would like to refinish but do not know what type of wood/finish it is. Three out of the four pieces have some sort of water damage on top only, otherwise good. I would really appreciate anyones expertise in identifying the wood, finish, etc. and any pointers, tips, etc. Thanks so very much!

3 replies so far

View patron's profile


13668 posts in 3898 days

#1 posted 03-15-2014 02:58 PM

most ‘production’ furniture was done with either walnut
(this looks like that to me)
or red oak
and nitrocellular lacquer
to test just use some lacquer thinner
on a back or hidden place
it will soften the finnish if it is lacquer
it can be stripped with any good striper
(the orange stuff works good)
and sanded
(lots of that old furniture was veneer
so be careful sanding)

the nice thing about the older lacquers
is the sanding dust
re-dissolves into the next coat
so dust motes aren’t a big deal
(real wood dust will telegraph thru any finnish)

water does stain it however (like coffee cups or soda cans)
if the rest is still in decent shape
you can just strip/sand the top
and use this tinted rattle can lacquer
to refinish the parts you need

i have gotten some for old works
in a few different tones
to match some aged pieces
a little of this one and a little spray of that one
to give the work that aged look
without doing the whole thing over

welcome to LJ’s

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

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1222 posts in 2994 days

#2 posted 03-15-2014 03:09 PM

+1 on what patron said.

You might also check to see if it’s a shellac finish. Since that is a dresser it might be damage from alcohol based cosmetics (cologne, perfume, etc.) Alcohol will damage a shellac finish.

Before sanding be certain whether it’s solid wood or a veneer. If it’s veneer be very careful when sanding to make sure you don’t sand through the veneer.

-- Tom Finnigan - Measures? We don't need no stinking measures! - Hmm, maybe thats why my project pieces don't fit.

View alleycatter's profile


2 posts in 2091 days

#3 posted 03-15-2014 03:23 PM

Thank you patron and tefinn for your help and suggestions!

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