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Forum topic by finishingup posted 639 days ago 858 views 0 times favorited 28 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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finishingup

7 posts in 841 days


639 days ago

I did a job for a friend recently, it was an Oak 5’ by 4’ Oak table. He wanted me to strip it, stain it, glaze it and finish it. He said he wanted it done ASAP. So, I got it done in a few days. The finish looked great! Happy that I was able to whip it out fairly quickly, I gave him a call only to hear that he wasnt going to be able to pick it up because his truck broke down. I had nowhere to keep it, so it sat in my back yard in the sun room for a week. I covered it in blankets to protect it as much as I could from the elements. I get a call from him on Friday saying that he’s going to have a friend of come pick it up so we can deliver it on Monday.

Today is Monday. I went out back to give it a once over. I could see that the week duration of the table being exposed to the weather caused a raising of the grain in an area as well as a split in the finish. Curious if anyone else has ever dealt with a scenario like this, and how they dealt with, not only the table, but with the friend whom you did the job for.

any advice would be truly appreciated.


28 replies so far

View Mark Smith's profile

Mark Smith

491 posts in 664 days


#1 posted 639 days ago

I havn’t dealt with it, but if it were my I’d just tell him what happened and then fix it at no charge. Tell him though that once it’s done he needs to make arrangements to come get it ASAP because you’ll have to charge if it needs more repair work because you can’t properly store it.

-- Mark Smith, Tracy, CA., http://www.markscustomwoodcrafts.com

View Tennessee's profile

Tennessee

1447 posts in 1139 days


#2 posted 639 days ago

I went down this road a few times with customers when I had my refinishing shop. Is especially bad when you are taking up some of your shop while trying to do other projects. From my perspective, people were given a date of delivery, give or take a few days that I felt comfortable with. Beyond that, we had capability to pick up and deliver. Never depend on people, since he may have a broken down truck, may be short on money, something else came up that has his attention, etc. Now, you took a chance and put it outside, (albeit covered), and now you get to refinish it again and repair the split at the minimum to preserve your abilities. People will talk about your work, and you don’t dare deliver that.

On the other hand, you can protect yourself somewhat by having the ability to deliver yourself. I know one time a lady set up delivery, and when we got there and set it up, she then told us that she didn’t have the money and would we trade for a birdseye maple set in her basement? I said no, we would truck the piece back into the van. She said she would call the police, so I had to remind her of her signature on the order sheet. She paid.
From then on, we got the money from people BEFORE we took it into the house. Just some reflections from a guy who did refinishing for people for twelve years. Most are great people, but about once a year you get a rummy.

-- Paul, Tennessee, http://www.tsunamiguitars.com

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finishingup

7 posts in 841 days


#3 posted 639 days ago

thanks guys. by the way, The first pick was how it got to my house, the second pic is the current state its in now.

View Tennessee's profile

Tennessee

1447 posts in 1139 days


#4 posted 639 days ago

Nice work!!

-- Paul, Tennessee, http://www.tsunamiguitars.com

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finishingup

7 posts in 841 days


#5 posted 639 days ago

here’s a picture of the area that split. If anyone has any suggestions on how to fix it without completely stripping it back down and starting from scratch, I’m all ears.

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112008 posts in 2202 days


#6 posted 639 days ago

My best guess is to take it apart so you can rip the top where the crack is, so that it’s no longer there and glue back together as perfectly as possible. if necessary sand where the joint is and use a air brush to touch up your color and then shoot the repair with lacquer. If it still does not look good shoot the whole top with shellac and then reapply your color and clear finish. I don’t think there’s an easy out.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View dhazelton's profile

dhazelton

1173 posts in 921 days


#7 posted 639 days ago

That split doesn’t follow grain – is it veneer? I don’t know a fix, other than trying to glue and clamp things together but that split will always show, even if just a little. The blotching of the finish looks like it hadn’t fully cured before it was covered.

View Don W's profile

Don W

14824 posts in 1192 days


#8 posted 639 days ago

Are you sure that’s a split and not a scratch? I’ve never seen wood split against the grain like that. Can you see it from the under side?

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

View Tedster's profile

Tedster

2270 posts in 836 days


#9 posted 639 days ago

I normally would never argue with Jim, as he really knows his stuff, but in this case I say no, no, no…. do not try to cut, re-glue, air brush… or you’ll end up buying your friend a new table.

I have to agree with the others, it looks more like a scratch. But if it is a split, the thing to do is open it just a little, from underneath, with something very thin, like a butter knife. Maybe use 2 or 3 butter knives… I can’t tell how long the split is. Then work some glue into the split, using cellophane or similar thin material to work the glue into the split. Pull the knives out and clamp it till the glue cures.

As for the finish, I would refinish it again. Bummer, but lesson learned. We’ve all been there before. That lesson is…

A) You charge for storage
B) You never store a customers project in the outdoor elements, even covered, even if they are your friend, even if you have to trip over it for a week or two or five.
C) You don’t provide storage.

-- I support the 28th Amendment. http://www.wolf-pac.com/28th

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112008 posts in 2202 days


#10 posted 639 days ago

If it’s veneer check with Sal at http://www.monsterwoodshop.com/

or start with the big guns charles@charlesneilwoodworking.com

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

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a1Jim

112008 posts in 2202 days


#11 posted 639 days ago

Hey Hey Hey Ted ! Ha Ha Ha :))

Your approach might be better,just for the reasons you state, but … sometimes forcing cracks open can splinter wood.
making it impossible to glue back together without cutting out a larger area of wood . It’s all a crap shoot.
I agree with A,B, and C.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View DaleM's profile

DaleM

910 posts in 2008 days


#12 posted 639 days ago

So you say that’s a split in the finish, but not the wood itself? What kind of finish did you use?

-- Dale Manning, Carthage, NY

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112008 posts in 2202 days


#13 posted 639 days ago

Looks like Dale can read far better than I can :)) I’ve never had just finish crack like that, that’s weird. Now I’m back to the questions others had asked. Are you sure it’s not a scratch?

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View Cosmicsniper's profile

Cosmicsniper

2199 posts in 1783 days


#14 posted 639 days ago

What products did you use?

-- jay, www.allaboutastro.com

View Don W's profile

Don W

14824 posts in 1192 days


#15 posted 639 days ago

Don’t feel bad Jim. A split in the finish? That’s stranger than thinking it was a split against the grain. Now I’m intrigued.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

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