Newbie Question - Staining Builder Grade Oak Cabinets

jb1176September 7, 2009

Help, please! We have Merillat Classic oak cabinets in a natural stain and we want to refinish them. The problem is overwhelming to us. The cabinets are only 8 years old and are in great condition and we can't afford to replace them at this time.

Is it possible to sand and restain the yelowy oak to a more toffee color - not too red and not too dark - just enough to get rid of the yellow, honey look of the cabinets? If so, what process do I use and what product should I use?

Thanks for your help.


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Just a few warnings:

* This is a lot of work. Really a lot of work.

* Sanding is possibly the worst way to do this. You will go through a lot of sandpaper and time (see first point), you will likely not get a good result (leave some finish and color that is going to mess up your finishing) and risk sanding through veneers. Use a chemical stripper.

* Some of the finishes in use in the last 10-15 years do not strip well. They are tough finishes, but most strippers won't remove them. You would need to find out if this is a finish that you have.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2009 at 8:41AM
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Thanks for the heads up about the work involved.

If re- staining isn't the option, what about painting the builder grade cabinets? I'm particularly worried about a primer sticking to the laminated end panels. What type of primer should be used and also what is a sanding primer? I would need something that I can brush on rather than spray. I don't have the equipment or the knowhow for that.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2009 at 2:58AM
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