During our initial assessment, we will:
1. Inspect your piece of furniture and/or wood environment and provide you with a summary of overall condition.
2. Discuss available options with you:
a. Maintain existing finish. Clean and wax finish to provide a rejuvenated appearance.
b. Touch-up. Perform existing finish touch-up to renew damaged or worn areas. Address minimal structural repair during the process.
c. Refinish & Repair. Remove existing finish and apply a new finish. Address structural repairs as required.
3. Discuss the results you are seeking.
4. Recommend the option, or combination of options, that will most effectively meet your needs.
There are generally three reasons for refinishing a piece of wood furniture:
Wood surfaces have small pores that gather dirt, grime and microorganisms. Contact with hands and food can contribute to issues specific to cleanliness. Finishing wood seals the surface making it safe and easy to clean.
Wood shrinks as it dries and expands when absorbing moisture. Depending upon the overall size and form, wooden components inconsistently absorb and release moisture. This variation can cause warping and splitting to occur. A quality finish coat will protect the piece by reducing the amount of moisture variation.
Refinishing wood can bring back the innate beauty and luster of your furniture piece. Refinishing also provides the opportunity to enhance the appearance through the use of alternative coatings: paint, stain, glaze, faux finishing and many other available options.
When does refinishing make sense?
During our inspection process, there are a number of potential issues we look for that may suggest the need to refinish. These include:
- Is the finish peeling off, cracked or missing in places?
- Does the finish have several scratches or dents that penetrate the wood?
- Has the finish turned dark in places?
- After cleaning, is the finish tacky or sticky to the touch?
- Does the finish have blemishes that cannot be removed by cleaning?
- Are there dark blotches within the wood itself?
- Does the finish negatively affect the overall appearance of the piece?
If the answer is yes to one or more of these questions, you may want to consider refinishing your piece, or a portion of it, to improve overall appearance while increasing its value.
Our Internal Restoration Process
All major repairs are completed first to prevent glue from penetrating raw wood. Glue that has spilled over onto the existing finish is removed.
We hand-strip only using an improved flow-over system. We begin our work from the top and move toward the bottom of the piece, quickly and carefully removing the old finish. The stripper used is formulated to leave older urea-formaldehyde glues used with antiques intact.
Before sanding, we steam out nicks and dents to eliminate the need to remove more wood from thin veneers and precious solid woods than needed. Drawers and doors are fitted and stopped, slides and glides checked, leaves fitted and detailing completed. Minor repairs are done and all surfaces, including drawer insides. Flat surfaces are block sanded to eliminate the typical waviness associated with machine sanding.
A base stain is used to bring the furniture piece to a preliminary color. Every surface is completely sealed with a sanding sealer including all under and inside areas. This helps prevent splitting, cupping, bowing and warping by slowing the woods ability to gain and give off moisture. To achieve a more distinct figuring we often pigment the wood filler. Aniline dyes, known for their depth and clarity, are used to shade entire pieces or individual areas to specific color tones. Pre-catalyzed lacquer topcoats, selected for their water and acid resistance, are applied, and hand rubbed to the desired sheen.