When attempting to restore antique furniture, there are a wide variety of tips and pointers you can use to ensure that your restoration process is a success. Whether you're restoring a dresser, desk or antique chair, the general process for refinishing and restoring your antique furniture is fairly uniform. To begin, you should set up a safe and ventilated work area to carry out your restorations. Then, inspect your antique furniture for any defects or specific areas that will need additional work.
You may also want to use a drop cloth to protect your floor as well as safety glasses and gloves to protect your eyes and hands when handling stains, paint removers and other products. If you are looking to add a new finish to your piece of antique furniture, you will need to apply stripping solution to remove the existing stain or paint on the furniture. Before applying any solution, make sure your furniture is listed on the side of the stripping solution’s bottle because some products are matched specifically for different types of wood and materials.
After you have applied the stripping solution and waited the recommended amount of time, you can use a putty knife to remove the paint or finish. For areas that are especially hard to deal with, you may want to use a steel brush as well. For additional residue and to get down to the furniture’s surface, use a lacquer thinner to complete the stripping process. For any marked areas of your furniture, use a brush to apply oxalic acid to the furniture to get rid of oil or watermarks. After the oxalic acid has dried, you can wipe the material off using a sponge and warm water. Then, you can sand and re-stain the furniture with a stain or finish of your choice. You may wish to add a final coat of Tung oil to top the furniture off as well. Enjoy!