Newbie Questions
#11
  
Hi,

I have a couple of very basic woodworking questions.

First, how do I know if the attached is a laminate or veneer?

In the bigger picture, I have a dining table and chairs that have been sitting in the garage for too long, and my dogs have chewed on them in quite a few places. I'd like to restore the table and chairs for use again.

I know that I can fill in the chewed areas and sand them to the point where the shape is Ok. But after that, I assume that I won't be able to stain them, since there will be so many "patches"? 

In addition to the dogs chewing it, it also has quite a few dings and scratches. Am I best off to just fill, sand and paint it, in your opinion?

Thanks for the advice!

Steve


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#12
  Re: Newbie Questions by steve.117 (Hi, I have a coup...)
Looks like solid wood to me.  Laminate and veneer are rarely used on chairs, and rarely on parts with a radiused edge.  

It doesn't look like they were stained to me.  It looks more like the finish is colored lacquer, what's called a toner.  That doesn't necessarily mean you will be able to match the finish after filling in the chew marks and dings with filler, but it might be possible.  It would take some effort to find a filler that accepts the toner the same way as the wood, however, and you most likely would have to strip the existing finish off completely to start.  As you suggested, it would be far easier to paint them after doing the necessary repairs.  

John
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#13
  Re: Newbie Questions by steve.117 (Hi, I have a coup...)
Wood filler, sand and paint would be my suggestion too. Trying to match the current finish to the new patches is above my pay grade, but I can handle a putty knife, sanding block and paintbrush well enough.  Wink
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#14
  Re: Newbie Questions by steve.117 (Hi, I have a coup...)
Thank you both for the advice! The more I think about it, the more I'm convinced that painting is my only option. There's a very slim to zero chance that I'd ever get the finish to match the existing material.

Cheers!
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#15
  Re: Newbie Questions by steve.117 (Hi, I have a coup...)
If the damage in the picture is typical or the worst, consider re-shaping the chair backs to remove the damage (instead of filling).

As long as the chairs all match, it will look like a design feature.

If you sand / scrape / file the finish off the top edge of all of the chairs along with adding more curve to the top corners of the chair backs, then the color mismatch with the new finish will look like a feature and add character.

Just a thought.
"the most important safety feature on any tool is the one between your ears." - Ken Vick

A wish for you all:  May you keep buying green bananas.
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#16
  Re: Newbie Questions by steve.117 (Hi, I have a coup...)
I agree that painting after repair is the best option. For the really bad areas, like the corner shown, I would consider cutting away the damage and glue back a solid piece of wood and then shape and sand to match. for the shallower scratches, dings, and chew marks, just use a good filler and sand smooth.
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#17
  Re: Newbie Questions by steve.117 (Hi, I have a coup...)
Just shorten the tops of al the chairs to the same. Nobody will ever notice.
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#18
  Re: RE: Newbie Questions by Willyou (I agree that paintin...)
(03-25-2021, 05:55 PM)Willyou Wrote: I agree that painting after repair is the best option. For the really bad areas, like the corner shown, I would consider cutting away the damage and glue back a solid piece of wood and then shape and sand to match. for the shallower scratches, dings, and chew marks, just use a good filler and sand smooth.

This advice about cutting and gluing a block back and shaping is what you should follow. That's how a professional restorer will fix such a damage.

If you don't have the staining skill, paint; otherwise stain. Or find someone who can help with the staining. Many local furniture shops have people with such skills.

Anyone who suggests making changes to this damaged chair as well as to ALL other chairs to match has had no real restoration experience under their belt.

Simon
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#19
  Re: RE: Newbie Questions by Handplanesandmore ([quote='Willyou' pid...)
(03-26-2021, 09:30 AM)Handplanesandmore Wrote: This advice about cutting and gluing a block back and shaping is what you should follow. That's how a professional restorer will fix such a damage.

If you don't have the staining skill, paint; otherwise stain. Or find someone who can help with the staining. Many local furniture shops have people with such skills.

Anyone who suggests making changes to this damaged chair as well as to ALL other chairs to match has had no real restoration experience under their belt.

Simon

Simon,

Speaking for myself, you are correct: I have no "real" restoration experience. I am just a woodworker.

Therefor, I do not immediately assume that restoration is the only solution to a problem.

I also did not consider painting to be a "real restoration."

Once painting became an option, it seemed reasonable to consider other options that might preserve more of the beauty of the wood.

The OP will certainly choose the approach that seems best for their own situation and skill sets.

Sorry if my suggesting out-of-the-box options offended you.

Ivan
"the most important safety feature on any tool is the one between your ears." - Ken Vick

A wish for you all:  May you keep buying green bananas.
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#20
  Re: RE: Newbie Questions by iclark ([quote='Handplanesan...)
Ivan,

I'm not offended in any way by your suggestion or anyone's in this thread. I was trying to point out when a project needs to be restored, the scope of restoration should be kept to the least where possible. Especially in the antique restoration trade, the "original" state should be preserved as much as possible unless it's the wish of the piece's owner to do otherwise. When a work I receive for fix was glued together with hide glue, eg, I'd never grab the PVA bottle unless PVA or epoxy or whatever is a better solution in the long term.

Of course, the professional/best practice approach is not always the right approach for amateurs since tools, techniques and experience are factors to consider. The back fix (excluding the staining part) is within the ability of most woodworkers who have acquired the basic woodworking techniques of sawing or routing, gluing and shaping.

Simon
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