Finishing railing - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 Old 09-15-2016, 02:24 PM Thread Starter
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Finishing railing

Hello all

Looking for some basic info. I'm far from an expert on finishing thus why I'm here. Recently moved into home so I cannot speak to history of this railing as far as finish goes. It appeared to be stained at some point but does not look to have much of a finish. So here's my question in looking at the pictures what do you feel the best method to finishing it is. I'm just looking to bring back a minor luster nothing glossy more along the lines of providing some rejuvenation as it appears to be dried. I was originally thinking oil but after research a lot is leading to a varnish. I'm not looking for a hard coat gloss what are your suggestions and recommendations as far as manufacturers. Thanks
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post #2 of 7 Old 09-15-2016, 03:01 PM
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2-3 coats of poly will give you the best protection. Varnish also does a nice job, but it just doesn't dry as hard as poly. Poly/varnish comes in 3 basic sheens, satin, semi-gloss and gloss.

Matching colors on different substrates is easy. All it takes is patience and beer.
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post #3 of 7 Old 09-15-2016, 04:25 PM
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Before you start finishing I would assume someone has put furniture polish on the railing. It certainly has skin oils on it. If it were me I would wash the railing with a wax and grease remover before putting any finish on it.

Personally I think what is there is kinda blotchy. I know how much work it is but I believe I would refinish the railing and sand the wood.

The best way to protect the stairs from drips when you are working on it is to cut some plywood or masonite in the shape of a Y and clamp it to the balusters with spring clamps. Then cut some strips of painters plastic about 1 1/2' wide and tape it to the balusters letting the Y pieces make like a plastic trough to catch what drips.
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post #4 of 7 Old 09-15-2016, 07:59 PM
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I was wondering if it had a finish on it at all looking at the pic. I have seen some houses where the builder simply stained the railing and did not apply a finish at all.

Matching colors on different substrates is easy. All it takes is patience and beer.
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post #5 of 7 Old 09-15-2016, 09:17 PM
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It looks like Danish oil to me.
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post #6 of 7 Old 09-15-2016, 09:37 PM Thread Starter
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Yea I can't clearly tell I dont believe it's finished. I will was and clean as suggested still up in air about finish Assume it does have a type of oil on it what do I need to do in order to poly over. Or should I just oil on top of what is there.
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post #7 of 7 Old 09-15-2016, 10:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawkdriver View Post
Yea I can't clearly tell I dont believe it's finished. I will was and clean as suggested still up in air about finish Assume it does have a type of oil on it what do I need to do in order to poly over. Or should I just oil on top of what is there.
If you just put an oil such as Danish oil or linseed oil on it the appearance would never improve. It will always look dry. It might help if you would put a wax such as Briwax on it however if you go down that road it would make it all the harder to put a varnish on it later if it didn't work.
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