Refinishing Cabinets

Old 07-16-02, 05:27 AM
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Refinishing Cabinets

Hi! I am in the middle of a refinishing cabinet job. This is my first experience with this. The cabinets were built in 1979, and they had several layers of a dark walnut brown stain on them. The stain was deep into the wood. We used citrus stripper and paint wash to strip the wood, and with applying much pressure was able to get most of the stain out.

However, some of the cabinets doors and one panel on the cabinets themselves were made with "seconds". What I mean is that they have panels that have dark "waves" (for lack of a better word) in them. The other portions do not have these. Also...after stripping the wood and getting out all of the stain on the surface, some of the wood has splotches deep in the wood.

My fear is that when I go to put the stain on the cabinets, that these "splotches" will be more noticeable.

What are your suggestions on this? Someone suggested using varnish instead of stain. What are the differences?

Thanks for your help!
Old 07-16-02, 03:51 PM
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Varnish is a clear finish (actually amber in color) the pre-dates polyurethane. What your friend may have been suggesting is a product by Minwax called Polyshades. It's a polyurethane finish with color added. I don't suggest using it.

Finding the 'seconds' with the dominant grain probably tells you why the cabinets were stained as dark as they were - to hide the wood. Not much you can do about it except stain it dark again, or paint it.

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