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PostPosted: Fri Nov 13, 2015 9:55 am 
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Joined: Wed Oct 11, 2000 12:01 am
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Location: Montgomery AL USA
I haven't been on the site in a long while...

We bought a new home and it has the typically blanched oak cabinet doors and cabinetry.

I am not a huge fan of oak (with the exception of quarter sawn) maybe because it seemed to be everywhere in 90's and I always liked darker woods (walnut, cherry, mahogany, etc).

I think these cabinets just have a straight polyurethane over them.

I would like your recommendations on how to darken them up substantially.

Would I need to shellac (padding shellac?) or sand them to prep them first?

Would there be any advantage in pore filler over the oak?

What kind of materials (brand name please) would you recommend? (Glazing stains??)

I really want them to be a very dark chocolate color, but I don't want them to look splotchy or make my kitchen look like a crime scene (e.g., wood abuse).

I do not want to take the cabinet boxes down, but do expect to take off the doors and drawer fronts.

Thanks!!


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 13, 2015 2:01 pm 
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Location: Rochester MN USA
JAKE LEG: It seems to me that you need to find out what the current finish actually is. Alcohol, lacquer thinner and mineral spirits should help with that as well as a really thorough wash down with hot soapy water and a good dry for any residual cooking oil vapor which has settled on the cabinets. The existing finish may have sealed the open grain of the oak so that may affect your later decisions about stain, dye or just tinted wax as well as the final finish or buff out.

Another thought on refinish/refurbish would be to veneer all the frames and faces and apply the finish to wood specie that you really prefer over the existing oak. Remember that cost is a factor relative to longevity and kitchen cabinets seem to last forever, particularly if they were built for the house.

An interesting and rewarding project!

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 13, 2015 6:43 pm 
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Location: Hamilton, MS
I have used a chemical called "Dad's Easy Strip" on several project to take off the old finish. I apply it, let it set for a few minutes until the finish is bubbling up, and then take it off with a plastic scraper. I usually do this twice. Then I put it on again and use a nylon or brass bristle brush to clean any places that the scraper won't reach. Then I use it again with very fine grit steel wool. Wipe everything down with cloth or paper towels between each procedure. I then apply acetone with a rag to take off any residue stripper. Then I sand with 220 grit sandpaper. After that you should be able to restain with what ever color you want. This is very time consuming but it has worked for me on many projects including kitchen cabinets.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 13, 2015 8:48 pm 
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Location: Rolling Meadows, IL. USA
Lacquer thinner will dissolve most finishes using it and steel wool will take off the finish.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 14, 2015 5:23 pm 
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Id sand them, down to bare wood then stain,


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