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ANTIQUE FURNITURE RESTORATION DISCUSSION BOARD

pigment vs dye stains

Posted By: Mauro Dal-Cin <mauro.dal-cin@nrc.ca> (pc233360.icpet.nrc.ca)
Date: 12/4/1 15:35

hi

sorry for the long winded posting but i thought some background on what i have tried already would help.

i have a quarter sawn oak table and chairs to which i would like to add two extra leaves to bring seating up to 10 people and leave the table uncovered.

i purchased some new quarter sawn red oak and on some scraps i tried some treatments/stains to try and get something close to the existing furniture:

one side was bleached with clorox (one plank was quite red compared to the other) and the other not. sanding was taken down to 320. i tried several stains from minwax, provincial, jacobean, dark walnut, honey oak and american/colonial oak.

none of these came close to the look of the exising furniture, in particular, the flecking on the new pieces really didnt stand out well.

the next step was to try and strip the varnish from an old leaf. the varnish came off easily enough, but any attempts to remove the existing stain (so that i can redo everything the same) had absolutely no success.

i used

deck whitener (ie oxalic acid) ammonia and peroxide (a trick a cabinet make uncle used to use in italy) straight peroxide (30%) NaOH and peroxide clorox

none of these worked at all. i worked if these stains were inorganic and therefore none of the bleaches would work. looking around on the web i found a few articles suggesting that pigment stains may have been used and this might explain why i could not remove the colour and why i could not get a close match.

so in the long run, i would be very happy to just redo the finish on the old table and keep the existing colour so long as i could get the new to match. this requires finding some pigment stains as opposed to dye stains and trying some samples. only thing is, no one knows about pigment stains! are these commercially available? what are some brand names?

other suggestions welcome too....

mauro dal-cin

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