Suggestions to repair minor scratched hardboard

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Old 05-16-13, 11:04 PM
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Suggestions to repair minor scratched hardboard

I've got a wall covered with hardboard / masonite and have a small shallow 6" scratch I'd like to repair. Can I lightly sand and wax or oil and buff or other suggestions? FYI hardboard, 1/8" to 1/4" thick, is pressed and baked, sometimes oiled, fiber.
 
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Old 05-17-13, 05:50 AM
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What kind of finish is on the hardboard? Pics might be useful - http://www.doityourself.com/forum/el...-pictures.html
 
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Old 05-18-13, 10:18 AM
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Hardboard finish is au naturel per manufacturer. Pics can't show the situation but attached is example from Home Depot.
 
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Old 05-18-13, 12:53 PM
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Unless you can buff it out, I don't know of anyway to repair/restore the finish of unfinished masonite.
 
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Old 05-18-13, 12:59 PM
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yeah if it's a scratch, there probably isn't anything that is going to take it out or hide it. You "could" try an old trick to take dents out of wood, but I don't know that it would work. Probably won't harm anything either so it might not hurt to try.

Take a damp cotton rag, like a t-shirt, and wet the area until it's damp. Take an iron (the kind used to iron clothes) set it on cotton, and iron the wet shirt on top of the dent/scratch.

If it was wood, it would raise the dent, then you would lightly sand the surface, and it would magically disappear. Unfortunately, masonite isn't wood.
 
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Old 05-19-13, 10:28 AM
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Not sure the hot iron technique would work. It works in wood because the cells still contain moisture which expands when heated and would push a small dent out. This method can even be used on finished furniture with only a dry cloth and iron. I don't think there is much cell structure remaining after the hardboard manufacturing process.

I've tried wetting and the smallest amount leaves a stain. Just an oily fingerprint is tough to work out so I don't think using something like a furniture oil would work.

I haven't tried waxing and buffing. There are several scuff marks which would be nice to have them removed. I'm just concerned with buffing that I won't be able to do just the affected area and will wind up having to do the whole surface which there is quite a lot of.

I've run across this situation several times over the years and have never found a solution. There used to be a Masonite Institute but have never received a reply from the current one. I would think with all the masonite paneled doors out there, there would be an answer. Maybe all those doors just get painted.

Thanks for the suggestions so far.
 
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Old 05-19-13, 03:08 PM
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I've painted a lot of masonite over the years [siding,doors,etc] and while it paints well, I've never heard of anyone trying to keep or restore the factory finish. Moisture is masonite's biggest nemesis so it's usually prudent to prime and and keep it painted.
 
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Old 05-20-13, 11:09 AM
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You have a point about the moisture but this is in a dry area and hope, now that you point that out, it will be OK.

The darker hardboard gives me the impression or faux finish of burled walnut. If you are familiar with the movie Inglorious Basterds the scene in the SS HQ is the appearance I was trying to accomplish.
 
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Old 05-20-13, 01:03 PM
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I have on a few occasions sprayed varnish/poly over masonite to protect it without changing the appearance much. Seems like the poly darkens it a little but I don't remember for sure - it's been a long time.
 
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Old 05-21-13, 10:45 AM
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I wouldn't mind it being a bit darker but too far along now. I had considered some kind of clear finish but too much material and no room. This was to be a down and dirty job from the start but as projects go one thing leads to another.

I've even used the hardboard as an underlayment for the carpet, neither of which is shown in pics. Also shelf liner. Just mention because of its versatility on this project.

Now that it's almost done I've found a lot of scuff marks that are more bothersome than the little scratch. Seems like a buffed out paste wax might work, just haven't tried the experiment.
 
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