restoring teak dining table and chairs

dcmarvelMay 4, 2008

Hello savvy woodworkers,

I have a circa-1950's teak dining room table and 4 chairs. It has been abused over the years and I would like to restore it.

I am not sure exactly what I need to do and what I should not do. I am thinking of sanding the top with an orbital sander. Any ideas of what sanding paper to use, how much to sand, what oil to put on after, etc.

Thank you!


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A lot of it is going to depend upon how bad it is and whether it's a veneer top or not.

Starting with sandpaper and an orbital sander is probably the wrong choice on many grounds.

If it is bad enough to need stripping, use a chemical stripper. It's messy but way more effective and less risky than starting with sanding. Once the finish is stripped off, all you need is a light sanding (e.g., 220). Starting with sandpaper is going to take forever and risks sanding through thin veneers.

The second issue is that most teak furniture is not "oiled" even though you think it may be. It's usually a flat low build lacquer. I have seen teak furniture that religiously got re-oiled annually. The result was a build up of soft and sticky oil (along with embedded fibers, hairs, etc.)

There may be some intermediate solutions if you give more information on where you are now with condition and where you want to go.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2008 at 1:05PM
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