Refinishing a table need advice :}

ElysiumJuly 16, 2010

Hi all!

I am looking for some advice. My dining room table is too small so I decided I need a new one. But I'm cheap, I like to turn something I can get off Craigslist into something I will adore. See I love a farmhouse table, just hate the price that goes with it, soooo onto Craigslist I venture.

I found a table I am very interested in and in fact I'm buying it this weekend, $60 yes please and thank you. I just hate the finish on it. I want to change the stain to suit me. It looks like a typical Rooms To Go table, but I want to make it look more farmhouse.

I also purchased beautiful windsor chairs off of Craiglist for a steal so I plan to pull together a farmhouse look.

My question is, what do I have to do to this table top to get it to the color I want? Here is are the pics of the table and what I am trying to achieve:

Table now:

Table I want:

Help me! I'm thinking a good sanding, stain, satin poly. Correct?

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Start with the methylene chloride stripper to remove the lacquer. You'll need lots of steel wool and heavy duty gloves.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2010 at 4:21PM
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All the old finish must be removed to use stain.

I wonder if a faux painting technique and varnish might be much easier. Kind of like a dark milk painting idea.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2010 at 6:36PM
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Have either of you ever heard of the product Klean strip liquid sandpaper? Wonder if that would remove the old finish?

    Bookmark   July 16, 2010 at 6:53PM
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That product is not a finish remover. It is supposed to degloss the finish so a fresh coat of paint will stick. Never tried it, never will. I already have mastered the use of real sandpaper. If you were going to paint instead of stain the chairs, I would recommend roughing the surface with sandpaper and skipping the liquid stuff.

I've used Klean strip premium with Methylene chloride. Thats the stuff you need to get down to bare wood.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2010 at 7:17PM
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Strip off the old finish....and Klean Strip is probably a good product...other products may be cheaper or smell better....but take the table outside and get it down to bare wood.
It just occurred to me....the top isn't a laminate is it? Hope not.
Then flip the table over and start experimenting with stains on the underside of the table top....when you find a color you like, flip the table back and stain it all over....let dry and apply your finish.
If you want a hard wearing kitchen table...I rec ommend poly...if you want something that will show can use a paste wax over the stain....but be aware that if you wax it you can't change your mind and apply a finish over the wax.
Linda C

    Bookmark   July 17, 2010 at 12:48PM
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Do not forget to finish all sides of all the wood, but especially the top.

Finishing only one side is a recipe for warping as the humidity changes between heating and cooling seasons.

It can even cause the top to split.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2010 at 4:17PM
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So much advice, thank you all so much!

I live in Florida so we don't really go through a heating/cooling period. And the table wasn't finished on the underside of the table before, it's 6 years old, and hasn't split yet so I am only doing the one side.

Here is what we did. Took the table outside and sanded it with a 1/3" sheet sander we bought for $20. Best $20 I ever spent. Sanded the top which took us 2 hours to get to bare wood and then go over with a fine grade sandpaper. Was so easy. After sanding we wiped it down with a damp cloth and let dry for an hour. We stained the wood and let it dry over night. The following day we deglossed the legs and painted them black. We also applied 1 coat of poly. Let the poly fully dry, I think it was like 4 hours, then applied another coat of poly. I found that the poly gave a slightly gritty texture. Is this normal?

    Bookmark   July 19, 2010 at 11:45AM
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