Woodworking Talk banner

1 - 2 of 2 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just got my hands on a couple of old (1970's) cabinets that I am refinishing. They had a dark mahogany effect stain and a very worn layer of varnish, I think, which I have sanded off. The tops, doors and edging are all white oak, the side panels are oak veneer, but the insides are ply. Its quite attractive and all, for ply, but is a completely different wood (birch, maybe?), with a different texture than the rest of the piece, and has held the mahogany stain a lot better, so that its remained a light pinky colour in the places I've sanded it down.

So, I'm going to finish the oak with tung oil. I want that natural look. What I'm stuck with is the finish for the ply. I'm loathe to sand it all back fully - it'll take forever and I'm not going to leave it 'natural' wood anyway. I need/want to cover the colour somehow. I think trying to make it match the white oak finish would be difficult/impossible (for me) and not look 'right'. I think a black finish would look striking - but how to achieve this?

Someone has suggested thinning down some oil-based satinwood, to get a really thin finish. Is this a good idea? I want to be able to tell its wood - to see the texture - through the finish. What about coloured varnishes? Or attempting the stain the ply in some way? Bear in mind this is the inside of a cabinet...

Like I said, I really don't want to be sanding down the whole piece, so I really need a finish that I'll be able to apply over the mahogany stain (no varnish) that is there, after I give it a key. Also, as you can tell, I'm no pro. So anything that requires much more than rudimentary skill might be problem for me. Any ideas guys?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
26,983 Posts
To really have a good outcome it takes a certain amount of preparation for finishing. I don't care for sanding to take a finish off. I prefer to chemically strip a finish. A remover is better able to cut the old stain that exists on the wood and bring it to a more uniform color. Then after stripping sand to at least 180 grit paper before finishing.

With what you have I believe I would be inclined to finish with a gel stain. It would be more likely to cover up any shortcomings there was in preparation.
 
1 - 2 of 2 Posts
Top