How to Clean a Craigslist Wood Dining Set?

CassandraFebruary 13, 2012

What's the best way to clean a dining set recently purchased from Craigslist? It is not an antique but probably dates to the 1970s or so. The finish is intact (ie. no bare wood showing through) and I assume (correct?) that it is some type of factory sprayed lacquer. I also assume that, besides dirt, there is buildup from previous sprays/waxing. Should I wipe it down first with mineral spirits? Is that adequate for complete cleaning or does it need to be followed by, say, Murphy's soap? And then is there something you recommend to polish it? Thanks: I don't want to screw it up!

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In addition to the answers you get here, you might want to do some reading on the Furniture forum and the Woodworking forum. I imagine this question comes up frequently on those forums.

You might consider the Formby's build-up remover.

Here is a link that might be useful: Formby's

    Bookmark   February 13, 2012 at 8:30AM
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I've had success with hand-me-down or curb-shopped furniture using "Royal Guardsman" polish. This stuff goes on with a rag, then wipe off. I have found it in my local grocery store. Good luck!

    Bookmark   February 13, 2012 at 8:31AM
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I ended up using the Formby's just because it was readily available at my local hardware store. It is a mild solvent and, with a little rubbing, cut through the few sticky spots and made the wood really clean. I followed it with a lemon oil rub and my dining set just gleams! Now on to re-doing the seat cushions!

    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 1:29PM
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