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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    2

    Default Renewing dried wood, drawers, etc.

    Many years ago (in the early 90's), I believe TOH did a segment on PBS which discussed renewing old, dry wood furniture - like wooden drawers.

    I believe the mixture was an equal ratio of turpentine, linseed oil and vinegar. Shake up, paint on and let the wood soak it up and dry.

    I have some nice solid cherry furniture I bought in the late 90's, made by Richardson Brothers, that has been in storage since 2003. It's in good condition, but very dry. I applied Old English almond oil to the exterior and wiped it down. However, regarding the interior (drawers), they need some moistening badly. Do you recommend the above mixture combination?

    Someone at Home Depot suggested Teak Oil, and I think that's probably not the right thing to do.

    Regarding the exterior of the furniture (solid cherry, again), the original finish is a satin-something - I can't tell if it's a spray urethane or a stain. I'd like to polish it so it shines... what product do you recommend?


    Thank you!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    1,132

    Default Re: Renewing dried wood, drawers, etc.

    That mix is pretty deadly stuff. I tried a variant of it, using alcohol in place of the turps.
    It has the property of being able to begin the breakdown of whatever finish is on wood. The oil becomes a magnet for dirt, and if it does soak in all the way it permanently darkens the wood. The formula was originally popularized be Mason & Hamlin (pianos and organs) of Boston (!) ; from the 1860's onward the recipe was included in the owner's manual of all of their french-polished instruments.
    Furniture conservators disdain such polishes.
    I would recommend a furniture wax like Johnson's or Butchers for dry-looking wood finishes. The wax is harmless, the oil & vinegar is best kept on salad greens.
    S_M
    Remove not the ancient landmark, which your fathers have set.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    nova scotia, canada
    Posts
    1,522

    Default Re: Renewing dried wood, drawers, etc.

    you made the mistake of going to home depot for supplys and advice

    your best bet is to go to a higher end woodworking supply such as lee valley or rockwell. the staff at such stores are usually retired furniture builders or avid woodworkers so they really know their stuff. also such places will carry products specific for your project
    fire up the saw and make some dust

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Renewing dried wood, drawers, etc.

    I would think that the alcohol alone would be very bad for wood; whereas Turp is balsam based, obtained by the distillation of resin obtained from trees. That might have caused your problem.

    The ratio/combo of linseed(boiled)/vinegar/turp was on an old episode of TOH; but it was for the interior (unfinished sides of, and drawers) of wood, *not* the finish. I would imagine to renew the finish you would either be looking at a literal re-finish or some other oil-based product.

    I used simple Old English almond oil and let it soak. The finish is not that bad, actually... just looks a little dry in a couple of places.

    I have put in some questions to the places recommended (at least, I think I found the right ones!).


    Thanks!



    Quote Originally Posted by Sombreuil_mongrel View Post
    That mix is pretty deadly stuff. I tried a variant of it, using alcohol in place of the turps.
    It has the property of being able to begin the breakdown of whatever finish is on wood. The oil becomes a magnet for dirt, and if it does soak in all the way it permanently darkens the wood. The formula was originally popularized be Mason & Hamlin (pianos and organs) of Boston (!) ; from the 1860's onward the recipe was included in the owner's manual of all of their french-polished instruments.
    Furniture conservators disdain such polishes.
    I would recommend a furniture wax like Johnson's or Butchers for dry-looking wood finishes. The wax is harmless, the oil & vinegar is best kept on salad greens.
    S_M

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Renewing dried wood, drawers, etc.

    My son has always had his dresser in his room. For a while, he would pull every artical of clothing out of it every morning before he woke me up. Then, i got smart, i put the dresser in his closet and kept the doors closed at night. he hasn't gotten into them since.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    1

    Default Re: Renewing dried wood, drawers, etc.

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