|Project by Pooka||posted 03-01-2014 08:48 PM||1115 views||0 times favorited||10 comments|
This is a solid maple end table that belonged to my grandparents. I am guessing it’s from 1940-50 or so.
Before, middle and after photos included. Used cabinet scraper and random orbit sander to get from bad to smooth. Used Minwax Ebony stain to get the color. Sanded to 400grit and used between 3 and 6 coats of General Finishes Enduro-Var Semi Gloss (depending on the part – the legs and pillars were easier to do than the top).
I just couldn’t seem to get the top of the top piece to finish without bubbles and runs, so I gave up this morning and did an old-fashioned Elbow Grease sanding to 1500 grit, then rubbed in a final polish of Rottenstone. Finished off with a buff with the same wheel I do my pipes with. It’s glass-smooth, but still matches the low-gloss of the rest of the table.
I didn’t count the hours, but I’ll call it maybe 15-20 actual working time.
There are three tables in this matched set. One more like this one and third is a coffee table (only one level). I won’t finish them in the same way. This one is for my Southwest style girl so it got the rustic treatment. The other two tables will be clean wood with just the clear finish to display the beautiful maple.
This is my first major furniture project, so you can probably guess that there was quite a bit of learning involved. Clearing off the old finish was pretty easy as I had just recently discovered CABINET SCRAPERS! What really made things hard was my lack of experience with clear finishes. I used the advice of a couple of Rockler associates to figure out what I could use, and I’m VERY happy with the results of the Enduro-Var, though I still couldn’t seem to make it perfect. I’m guessing it’ll just take more practice.
In the end, whatever genius built this thing sure didn’t take much time to do a precise job of drilling, so each component had ONE AND ONLY ONE place where it fit. That made for quite a fun reassembly.
I’m real proud of this resuscitated relic, and my daughter just plain loves it.
-- Slice, whack, smack, bang bang, sploosh, scrape, done.