Diagnosing a Glazing Error

      One party to a problem wanted to blame kitchen heat for a dark discoloration of some cabinetry. But an application error during the glazing process turns out to be the cause.March 13, 2014

Question
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This cabinet manufacturer told my client that this is burn or heat damage to the stove hood. I have not seen this piece yet in person, except for the photos. What do you guys think as far as possible damage cause and repair methods?


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Forum Responses
(Finishing Forum)
From Paul Snyder, forum technical advisor

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What damage? Are you talking about the glaze?


From the original questioner

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I'm still waiting for confirmation from the manufacturer. I believe we're talking about the black streak running from right of photo, 3/4 the way up, across the panel and across the round over at the top.


From contributor D:
No, that is not heat damage.

Not sure what your role is in this but if I were to be asked to diagnose it, the first thing is to figure out if that dark area is on top of or underneath the topcoat. The part that is interesting to me is how it looks like whatever it was ran down but then took a 90 degree turn to the right across the panel, which is strange.

Did the client confirm thearea was not on the panel when originally installed?

With no other information if someone asked me to guess what caused it I would think the most likely cause was there was excess glaze in the profile that ran down the bead detail and onto the panel, then it was clear coated afterwards. If it is on top of the coating, it should be able to be scuffed out and reshot with a clear coat.


From the original questioner

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I am also not confident in the diagnosis. However, I never make my decision based on a photo. Whoever took the photo could also be hiding surrounding damage. Manufacturer wants to hide excess glaze and customer wants to hide excess damage. I'm sure you understand.

I'm going out to assess and repair this week. I get paid either way but both manufacturer and customer will know my determination clearly upon completion.

I appreciate your response and hope it's on top of the clear coat. That would make for a good paying, quick repair indeed.

However, let's say this is chemical damage or in fact scorched wood. How would you approach the repair? Is there an easy way to remove darkened wood? I've repaired cigarette burns on a birch table before, and god was that alot of sanding. Could the area be bleached and refinished instead?


From Paul Snyder, forum technical advisor

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I think contributor D diagnosed the cause. The dark run looks exactly like the effect you get if you have a run in the dye, stain, or glaze and don't wipe it off at the same time.

You can also get the same effect by wetting the bare wood before the staining process. The swelled wood fibers absorb more stain. Anyone that ever had a drip of sweat get on the bare wood they were staining can testify to the dark splash mark it creates.

If the dark streak was created during one of the coloring steps, the only solution I would attempt is to refinish the panel. Removing the dark streak and replacing the color and blending it in is impractical.



From contributor D:
First off you have to look at the picture with common sense and ask yourself what type of heat event from a stove could cause a brown streak that runs horizontally across a panel and then suddenly makes a 90 degree turn straight up over a profile and then stops. I am not saying that can't happen but I would put the likelihood darn close to zero.

So that leads us to chemical - what type of chemical can cause the effect we see in the picture? It would be hard for the chemical to be liquid because of gravity.

It would certainly be nice to have a picture that panned out just a little bit so I could get a good look at the surrounding rails and stiles. Until then I am sticking with either the stain or the glaze being the issue, or some moisture got on it at some point in the finishing process.



From contributor R:
Certainly any heat hot enough to color the wood would have also bubbled the coating. I don't see any evidence of charring or blistering of the clear coat. To me the photo shows poor color application and sloppy removal of said color.


From contributor A:
Sloppy finishing for sure. Send it back to the manufacturer. The telltale run of dark stain over the beading says it all. Only way to correct it is to take it back to bare timber and start again.


From contributor D:
So what was the verdict?

From the original questioner

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It was definitely a drip in the glaze. I was able to strip and refinish the area in home. The repair took about an hour. Thank you for the help in diagnosing the damage. I really appreciate it.


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From contributor D:
Looks like you did a great job. Thanks for the update.

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