Removing poly or varnish

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Forum topic by Knothead62 posted 11-14-2013 11:04 AM 618 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2581 posts in 2378 days

11-14-2013 11:04 AM

Topic tags/keywords: varnish poly question finishing oak

These are some oak school chairs and have either a poly finish or varnish. They aren’t that old so I’‘m thinking a poly finish. My wife sanded on of the chairs but that didn’t get all the finish off.
I have some citrus stripper, but it is hard to ventilate the garage/shop this time of year. Any suggestions for a DIY stripper that doesn’t have the fumes? Thanks.

3 replies so far

View Bill7255's profile


344 posts in 1702 days

#1 posted 11-14-2013 11:22 AM

There is a stripper called “soy gel” I think. It works very well and no fumes or burning to the touch. Kind of expensive and I have seen it at Lowes, Menards, or HD.

-- Bill R

View OggieOglethorpe's profile


1172 posts in 1527 days

#2 posted 11-14-2013 01:00 PM

I haven’t tried Soy Gel, but I love Franmar’s soy-based brush and spray gun cleaner sister product. It’s the only thing that will touch super-durable varnishes and dried latex paint.

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2581 posts in 2378 days

#3 posted 11-14-2013 05:19 PM

Thanks! I’ll look at the local box stores and hardware stores. I have 8 chairs to work on this winter.

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