Damaged dining table finish

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Forum topic by jsquared posted 08-01-2014 10:16 PM 1277 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View jsquared's profile


61 posts in 3271 days

08-01-2014 10:16 PM

Topic tags/keywords: repair finishing damage finishing rustic question

My neighbors accidentally spilled the liquid from one of those plug-in room scent things, and it basically stripped some of the finish off the table. It almost seems like it took some of the color out of the wood as well. It definitely ate thru the topcoat.
I have not ever finished a dining room table so I am not familiar with what may have been used on this one. When I tested putting a bit of the General Finishes High Performance water-based polyurethane on it, the effect was not really noticeable. It seems like I may need to try staining it a bit darker or using some other type of clear coat to come close to matching the original finish. Can some of you finishing gurus offer suggestions? Thankfully, they just want it close and don’t expect it to be a perfect match. However, I’m a perfectionist so I want it to almost not be noticeable. Thanks for your suggestions.

-- Jsquared, Texas

6 replies so far

View TexPenn's profile


459 posts in 3922 days

#1 posted 08-01-2014 10:59 PM

Get some more of the stuff they spilled on the table in the first place & strip the whole table with it.

-- Ted, TX or PA

View Manitario's profile


2702 posts in 3117 days

#2 posted 08-02-2014 12:03 AM

I’d sand back around the area to blend in the stripped patch and then play around with different coloured stains on scrap until you find a good match.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View Beatnik's profile


37 posts in 1635 days

#3 posted 08-02-2014 12:15 AM

Is that huge or a small spot on an edge ? If it’s a small spot you can get some Mohawk powder stain to match the base color, mix it into some clear lacquer (I spray it from a can into a small cup) and brush it on. Use graining pencils to fake the grain in and spray it over with lacquer. Takes practice.

View Finisherman's profile


227 posts in 2084 days

#4 posted 08-02-2014 05:18 PM

I would try getting a can of coloured lacquer, known as a toner within the finishing trade, from a company like Mohawk or Stewart Macdonald. Apply the toner in light mist coats until the colour is right and then apply a clear lacquer topcoat. If that doesn’t work, you can always strip and refinish the table.

View Paul Maurer's profile

Paul Maurer

162 posts in 1789 days

#5 posted 08-03-2014 11:44 PM

– strip and refinish the table.

- Finisherman

Sometimes being a perfectionist sucks.

View Clint Searl's profile

Clint Searl

1533 posts in 2595 days

#6 posted 08-04-2014 12:40 AM

Yeah, do it right and strip & refinish.

-- Clint Searl....Ya can no more do what ya don't know how than ya can git back from where ya ain't been

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