Restoring the Finish on an Older Piano? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 11 Old 07-15-2020, 06:08 AM Thread Starter
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Restoring the Finish on an Older Piano?

I have a Baldwin Acrosonic console piano from the early 1950s. It was my Mom's piano while she was growing up; she now has a much nicer baby grand but I'm hanging on to her old one for sentimental reasons. It's seen a lot of wear and tear; it was flooded in Tropical Storm Allison but didn't seem to suffer any lasting damage.

I'm wondering what I can do to maintain and improve the finish on it and especially on its matching piano bench, which is essentially down to bare wood already. Mom suggests lemon oil and I do have some, but that bench especially needs stronger medicine. What would the experts here advise?

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post #2 of 11 Old 07-15-2020, 07:41 AM
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Photos will help but more than likely stripping and refinishing will be the best answer.

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post #3 of 11 Old 07-15-2020, 07:43 AM
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many questions here, since we can not see what you are working with.
and - we are not there in person to give somewhat accurate methods.
there is a big difference in the terminology to "restore" or "refresh" a finish.
and to what degree do you want to bring it back to. what are your realistic expectations.

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post #4 of 11 Old 07-15-2020, 09:22 AM
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Consider a padded fabric cover for the bench. Whoever plays the piano will appreciate it, too.
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post #5 of 11 Old 07-15-2020, 10:14 AM
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Traditionally, pianos have been french polished. These days I would consider epoxy to give that deep shine.

https://www.google.com/search?q=fini...C1fAPwaGzkAU50


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post #6 of 11 Old 07-15-2020, 10:45 AM
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Black lacquer, sanded and buffed with a auto grade buffer.
That's how you get a flat, mirror finish.
Just like painting a car, clear urethane will work too, just
a little more work.
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post #7 of 11 Old 07-19-2020, 11:44 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by difalkner View Post
Photos will help but more than likely stripping and refinishing will be the best answer.

David

Sorry to take so long to get back to you, but here's a photo:


20200719_102624.jpg


I think that the finish on the piano itself is salvageable, and I'd hate to lose that gold-leaf "Acrosonic" logo lettering. So for that I'd appreciate tips for getting the existing finish in better condition.


As for the bench, I agree that it probably needs to be completely refinished. I'm really a newbie at wood finishing, so use small words and don't assume that I have any pre-existing skills. I'd like for the finished bench to match the piano, as much as possible.


As far as my objective, it's simply to stop my Mom from saying, "Oh, my poor old piano!" when she (infrequently) comes to visit!
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post #8 of 11 Old 07-19-2020, 12:35 PM
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On a lower luster finish like that I would try one of the wipe on finishes
since you can't spray it.
Clean it real good with a detergent, scuff it with a gray scuff pad
and wipe on something made for wiping on.
Myself, I spray everything with conversion varnish.

JC
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post #9 of 11 Old 07-20-2020, 12:32 AM Thread Starter
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I do have some Johnson's Paste Wax. Would that be appropriate to use here?

Where's the KABOOM? There was supposed to have been an Earth-shattering KABOOM!

----Eric H. Bowen
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post #10 of 11 Old 07-20-2020, 09:54 AM
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I wouldn't use wax on any bare wood.
When I say a wipe on finish I mean like
a wipe on polyurethane or tung oil, something
that will soak into the bare wood and provide
a protective layer on it.

Maybe some of the others on here can chime in with a recommendation,
I'm not as familiar with them as I spray everything with a commercial finish.
Everyone has their own favorite.

JC
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post #11 of 11 Old 07-20-2020, 10:49 AM
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Before you do anything, try out on a small surface below the keyboard or at the back or side.
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