Was this piece stained? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 07-22-2019, 12:21 PM Thread Starter
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Was this piece stained?

I am refinishing an antique dresser that I think (but am not sure) was never stained. It looks like it was only top coated and the overall finish has simply darkened over time.

Is there a way to tell if a piece has been stained or not?

Thanks Gary
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post #2 of 14 Old 07-22-2019, 01:16 PM
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Originally Posted by GAF View Post
I am refinishing an antique dresser that I think (but am not sure) was never stained. It looks like it was only top coated and the overall finish has simply darkened over time.

Is there a way to tell if a piece has been stained or not?

Thanks Gary
Forgot the picture.
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post #3 of 14 Old 07-22-2019, 02:07 PM Thread Starter
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Forgot the picture.
Oops. Picture added.
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post #4 of 14 Old 07-22-2019, 03:59 PM
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if there is an inconspicuous place that you can
scrape the finish down to bare wood, then you
will have an idea if it was stained or not.
and if it was, possibly what color or tint was used.

.

.

-- Failure is proof that you at least tried ~ now, go do it again, and again, until you get it right --

Last edited by John Smith_inFL; 07-22-2019 at 04:01 PM.
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post #5 of 14 Old 07-22-2019, 04:21 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Smith_inFL View Post
if there is an inconspicuous place that you can
scrape the finish down to bare wood, then you
will have an idea if it was stained or not.
and if it was, possibly what color or tint was used.

.

.
I have in fact sanded the back splash but I cannot tell whether or not it has been stained.

Gary
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post #6 of 14 Old 07-22-2019, 04:39 PM
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I think it's been stained but without seeing the stripped wood can't say for sure. It looks like a lacquer finish. I think if you had a sprayer you could have sprayed a coat of lacquer on it and it would have almost looked refinished. The white would melt away. If you are going to strip it anyway pour a little lacquer thinner on the white spots and let it dry and you would see what I mean.
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post #7 of 14 Old 07-22-2019, 05:33 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
I think it's been stained but without seeing the stripped wood can't say for sure. It looks like a lacquer finish. I think if you had a sprayer you could have sprayed a coat of lacquer on it and it would have almost looked refinished. The white would melt away. If you are going to strip it anyway pour a little lacquer thinner on the white spots and let it dry and you would see what I mean.
Steve, I have already sanded the whole dresser top. I wish I had been able to do the lacquer thinner test. I guess I was too impatient (again).

Gary
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post #8 of 14 Old 07-22-2019, 06:02 PM
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The wood may have darkened with age. It looks like Honduras mahogany to me.
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post #9 of 14 Old 07-22-2019, 10:26 PM Thread Starter
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The wood may have darkened with age. It looks like Honduras mahogany to me.
Steve, thanks for the feedback. Darkening with age was my hunch but I don't have your experience to draw on. Knowing what the wood is helps. It did look like a special wood to me but I was not sure what.

The staining is progressing well. The dresser top has been stained but the backsplash is original. The color match looks very close to me.

Gary
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post #10 of 14 Old 07-22-2019, 10:39 PM
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Steve, thanks for the feedback. Darkening with age was my hunch but I don't have your experience to draw on. Knowing what the wood is helps. It did look like a special wood to me but I was not sure what.

The staining is progressing well. The dresser top has been stained but the backsplash is original. The color match looks very close to me.

Gary
Mahogany darkens with age. The table and carving are both made out of Honduras mahogany without any stain. The table is about 40 years old where the carving was finished this year.
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post #11 of 14 Old 07-23-2019, 08:19 AM Thread Starter
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Mahogany darkens with age. The table and carving are both made out of Honduras mahogany without any stain. The table is about 40 years old where the carving was finished this year.
Steve, if there ever was a project that needed spray capability this would be it. Nice demonstration of the aging impact. Thanks.

Gary
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post #12 of 14 Old 07-23-2019, 08:35 AM
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Steve, if there ever was a project that needed spray capability this would be it. Nice demonstration of the aging impact. Thanks.

Gary
I know you don't have the space but if you would work with lacquer most days you could spray furniture outdoors. I do finishing work outdoors under a roof. It just couldn't be done in direct sun or windy days. Lacquer dries so fast it doesn't give much of a chance for dust and bugs to get in the finish. It also dries so fast you don't get overspray on other things.
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post #13 of 14 Old 07-24-2019, 07:39 AM Thread Starter
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I know you don't have the space but if you would work with lacquer most days you could spray furniture outdoors. I do finishing work outdoors under a roof. It just couldn't be done in direct sun or windy days. Lacquer dries so fast it doesn't give much of a chance for dust and bugs to get in the finish. It also dries so fast you don't get overspray on other things.
Steve, in my climate where I live this would only be possible 3 or 4 months of the year. Some things just aren't meant to be. It's a good thing this is a hobby and I don't have to rely on it.

Gary
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post #14 of 14 Old 07-24-2019, 08:42 AM
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Steve, in my climate where I live this would only be possible 3 or 4 months of the year. Some things just aren't meant to be. It's a good thing this is a hobby and I don't have to rely on it.

Gary
The only issue with working with lacquer is humidity in warm weather. You can use lacquer below freezing. It takes a lot longer to dry in the cold but is not as slow as oil based finishes.
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