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Hi Everyone !
I have been asked by a customer to restore this old dresser when I visit in South east Asia. I am just learning the trade and was unsure about a couple of things.
Firstly, does anyone recognise this style or think it is a genuine antique? I cant seem to find anything similar here in the UK so it could be a colonial piece or perhaps worth nothing at all! It was bought from a second hand dealer and didn't come with any info.
I would guess a previous owner painted it this colour but cant be sure?
I am hoping to reverse the sagging by installing a sturdy hardwood back-plate between the two cupboards and clamp them in tight while gluing..
This will hopefully help the drawers function again. I only have photos to go on at the moment!
Looks like the paint would scrape off relatively easily or perhaps even with nitromors.
Sorry the pics are a bit small due to upload limits.
Any help, ideas or advice would be greatly appreciated!!
Many thanks, John
 

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Very hard for me to tell. I personally wouldn't take something like this on until I looked it over in person. The paint may or may not be original. My guess 1980's. if you are able to look at hardware you can tell a lot more. Underside of drawers may have makers mark.
 

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There is nothing simple or easy about getting paint off. It takes a lot of elbow grease. The shape of it suggests to me it may be rosewood veneer under the paint but if someone painted it I bet there is too much damage to it to refinish with a stain finish. I normally will give a customer a price to strip the paint and then after that is done evaluate the piece for further work. Usually there is a reason for the paint like big patches of bondo where there used to be veneer. I don't know what products are available in the UK. Try to find a paint remover that contains methylene chloride. Usually with paint it comes off one layer at a time so if it has 5 coats of paint on it you pretty much have to strip it 5 times to get it clean. With any remover you have to keep it wet for 15 to 30 minutes before you start scraping the finish off. Let the stripper do most of the work and try to stay upwind from the fumes. If you have access to a power washer that is low pressure or you can adjust the pressure down to 1500 psi that will help a lot. The power washer will lift the paint out of the cracks and crevaces or open grain better then anything you can use.
 

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Thanks very much guys for your replies! I think it will be best to have a further inspection as you suggest. The customer wants it re-painted so I guess I wont have to worry too much about the veneer underneath.
Also, that is a very useful tip regarding the power washer!
Thanks again for your help, John
 

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The damaged area looks like the substrate is particle board. The piece doesn't appear to be an antique, but rather more current. I wouldn't use a power washer on any wood furniture. Even at low pressure, joints can be loosened, repaired areas can get dislodged, and veneer can be loosened and removed.

Pressurized water can spew toxic stripper in many directions. Water runoff carrying stripper and residue material can be a hazard to an outside area...grass, foliage, or concrete. IOW, an ecological hazard.






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Thanks very much guys for your replies! I think it will be best to have a further inspection as you suggest. The customer wants it re-painted so I guess I wont have to worry too much about the veneer underneath.
Also, that is a very useful tip regarding the power washer!
Thanks again for your help, John
that is going to be a job that you may not want, i used to strip item's for yrs , it isn't something for a first time diy-er , no amount of money would i do this job, but go for it and check back and let the member's how you liked the job.
 
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