Antique furniture pieces are basically items that have aesthetic or sentimental value for their owners. It is therefore important to exercise suitable measures for preserving them properly, refinishing being one of them. Given below is the procedure for refinishing an antique furniture piece.
Prior to beginning with the refinishing job, it is essential to confirm that the furniture does not have a pre-existing layer of patina. One must also carefully read as well as comprehend the instructions given on all the solvents and chemicals that have been chosen for executing the task.
The next vital step is to decide whether the antique needs a thorough cleaning or its old finish has to be stripped off. Sometimes, cleaning can help in understanding what actually requires to be done. While in other cases, a coat of varnish can be enough to bring back the original luster.
When using a paint remover, most experts of antique furniture restoration in Sydney recommend applying a thick layer in one stroke. It would form a pudding-like skin on the surface, and placing a newspaper or plastic on it can help to keep the remover from drying out. It is important to ensure that the surface being worked on has been kept in a horizontal position. The paint stripper should not be removed until a finger can be rubbed down into bare wood.
Once the stripper has done its work done properly, it has to be scraped off using a putty knife or an obsolete credit card. Putty knife can cause damage to the wood if handled inappropriately, therefore it is more prudent to utilise an old credit card.
After that, the piece must be washed down either with water or a suitable solvent. Reading the container of the solvent is essential, in order to determine whether the product about to be used is appropriate or not. Scrubbing with help of a stiff brush having coarse wood chips can be ideal.
For removing light scratches, one can rub the surface of antique piece with a fine grit sandpaper. To sand different mouldings and shapes on the item, old felt may be used as well.
To stain the antique furniture, using pigmented wiping stain would be the best bet. It is not only colour fast, but can also be utilised for highlighting and developing grain of various wood species. The stain should be brushed on, allowed to stand for a minute and then wiped dry. After that, the finish can be put on using a piece of soft cloth and allowed to dry for 24 hours. Three or four coats of the finish might just be enough for completing the refinishing work.