Refinishing stair banister to a darker color - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 4 Old 07-01-2009, 03:15 AM Thread Starter
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Refinishing stair banister to a darker color

I just purchased a new home and the center piece of the home is a curved stairway. The color of the banister is a walnut color.

We would like to darken the color to match the kitchen refacing job we will be doing. We would like to make it into a cherry or espresso color.

I've asked several painters to come out and provide some quotes, some just flat out won't provide a quote where as others have provided several other "options" to darken it.

I've been given options such as:

- Lacquer shade: no idea what this is and couldn't find much mention of it on the internet. Was told it would give a "furniture" finish and the painter wasn't too clear when i asked if i would lose the grains.

- Shellac: don't think this will make it much darker

- Varnish tint: Can't really find much on this...? Was told that it would darken the existing coat of varnish. Is this just a tinted clear coat or something like that?

- Minwax polyshades: Found this from my own research, seems to get mixed reviews. Will probably stay away from this.

Of all the painters, only one warned me that with the traditional staining method it might not be possible to get all of the old sealer off where it might have absorbed deep into the grains. In those areas it won't be affected by the darker stain color and there may be blotches of the lighter color. This worries me a lot and is making me cautious of using that method.

Could any of you provide some inputs to these different methods, or any other options that i might have?
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post #2 of 4 Old 07-01-2009, 12:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shortskoolbus View Post
I just purchased a new home and the center piece of the home is a curved stairway. The color of the banister is a walnut color.

We would like to darken the color to match the kitchen refacing job we will be doing. We would like to make it into a cherry or espresso color.

WELCOME TO THE FORUM

My first thoughts on what you describe is that walnut is darker than cherry, if you're talking about woods and not foods. You also didn't state what the wood is you're dealing with. As for what finish has been applied may determine how you color it.

Some finishes can be tinted, or also called "shaded" by mist spraying the finish to change or alter the color. Depending on what finish is on the wood will determine what would be used to apply shading.

Also, depending on what wood it is, and stripping all the finish off and starting over, may determine what final colors you can get. It may be easier to darken light woods, than lighten dark ones.






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post #3 of 4 Old 07-01-2009, 03:52 PM
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Is there a wood finishing specialist in your area? Look in the yellow pages under wood refinishing. Sounds like each painter gave drastically different recommendations based their specific experience. A specialists knowledge may be a bit more in depth than a general painting contractor.
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post #4 of 4 Old 07-01-2009, 04:41 PM Thread Starter
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Sorry, i described it wrong with Walnut. I guess it would be an Oak colored finish? It's basically a really medium brown color. Popular in the 80 and early 90s...

Thanks I'll have to check with a wood specialist i guess.
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