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White residue in mahogany grain11/6/16
I have a customer that has white residue in the deep grain of her furniture. (It is Henredon). She said the furniture guy gave her a care kit which she used and this is the result. Any suggestions for a way to get this out without hurting the finish. I think it is just wax or polish that dried white.
Try scrubbing it out with mineral spirits and a soft/fine nylon brush. It might take a couple cycles to get it out. Mineral spirits will soften the wax, not the finish.
That is such a consistent grain fill, I wonder if its actually a grain filler applied at the time of the furniture inception. If its actually a wax residue, the customer was very detailed to get into all the nooks and cranny's. ;-)
If'n its a wax residue, rich c advice is spot on, especially when he brings up the "couple cycles" approach.
What if that finish is shellac? The denatured alcohol will melt that and then you have to refinish when all they wanted was the residue to go away. No idea of the value or age of the furniture, but a good antique will loose a lot of value with a refinish.
I would try a good degreaser like Simple Green. I had to remove surfboard from the deck of a plastic boat(kids racing sailboat). The wax was put on heavy like a surfboard(my genius son).
Anyways, I was impressed by how well the Simple Green washed off the residue after I scrapped most of it off.
Use it mixed 50/50 with water. Soft plastic brush used for cleaning cars should help get it out of the pores.
Henredon furniture is finished with nitrocellulose lacquer.
What suite is this dresser from? What model number? Aston Court? How new/old is this? What about other pieces of this group owned by your customer? Same deal?
I would hesitate to use Simple Green. It contains butyl celosolve, a main ingredient of lacquer thinner. This is what gives it such great solvency.
It is a reproduction type piece from henredon. I think it is 10-20 years old
I knew it has the butyl in it. I didn't know it was in lacquer thinner. Thanks for the info. It is a really good product.
Butyl Celosolve (EB) is a nasty chemcial that was at one time classified as hazardous. It irritates me that it's in a product that is called "green", implying that it contains natural ingredients only. EB is versatile, cheap and 100% water miscible.
You may laugh at this but I've taken black
$10 says this is the white residue leftover from someone applying a buffing compound or polishing compound over the surface of the finish to give a hand rubbed effect and it was left to lodge in the open pores of the open grain of Mahagony...... Mineral spirits wash with a soft bristle brush will help some... I'd go with a good wipe down off dark old English polish... it will most likely color the white dusty powder left in the pores.. and then make sure all the liquid polish is wiped off very well with a microfiber towel.... a dark paste wax like Briwax would work well but it takes a special hand to apply it without making it look hazy... Most folks apply waaaaay to much wax
you are right on about someone fiddling with some sort of "wiz-bang" polish or wax. since the white is so consistent one would think it was from an application of something. the Briwax is a very good product, the application of wax is too often overlooked, much like shellac is. it seems like craftsmen today are only aware of one thing TIME, although it relates to cost most owners of fine furnishings really don't care if it requires an expensive treatment over the years. it is expected.
A couple of notes:
1. BriWax did (or still does) have toluene in it. To use this on furniture that's finished with nitrocellulose lacquer might cause serious and unfixable problems that will only be remedied by stripping off the finish. Toluene (or Tylol) is a dluent that can and will soften a lacquer surface and wreak even greater havoc on items finished with waterbased coatings.
Johnson's Paste Wax can be colored, I suppose. Use that. I think that this wax uses turpentine as its solvent. Turpentine is too weak of a solvent to have any effect on a cured lacquer surface.
Toluene is far more dangerous a substance than is butly cellosolve with regard to workplace safety. It's on a par with xylene (Xylol). It's noxious.
2. The amount of butyl cellosolve that's in Simple Green is unlikey enough to cause any finishing mishaps. Simple Green is the go-to cleaner for piano soundboards, and i don't recall seeing any "footprint" left behind after its use.
Way back when we had a finishing magazine for our trade, a furniture tech wrote an article on touch ups, that on many dents and gouges he would fill them with epoxy putty (Tootsieroll Epoxy, so to speak), and wetsand his fills smooth using Simple Green as his wetsanding lubricant.
I don't use Simple Green, I cannot stand the smell that it has.
To wrap up, no to BrixWax and yes to Simple Green.
Hey Dan, are you saying for sure that prior to the use of the material supplied by the furniture tech that the wood pore was not white (as is seen in the pictures)? Do I see a finish that is oxidized?
There is no reason to wax any furniture such as Henredon.To me that's sacrilegious. One has to wonder about the body of knowledge that this furniture tech has who supplied this product, if that is what caused the whiting in the pores.
Your right that a wax like Briwax could be detrimental to a nitro or shellac finish. that's why I treaded lightly and stated that most people apply waaaaay too much and it should be left to a professional that knows how to use the product.... if you slop it on it can melt lacquers and shellacs... but used delicately and correctly it can really bring out some details in a piece of furniture... briwax absolutely has a toluene free formula... but as I stated a bottle of liquid old English in a dark color would most likely remedy the issue and applied quarterly to maintain it and wiping it down thoroughly with a clean rag as not to leave the dark residue to get on fabrics would be a very quick and simple solution to the problem... I am not a basement hobbyist. I started out in restoring furniture for years in a professional shop over twenty years ago and learned tons about restoration/repair and refinishing... years later I now run a finishing facility that's runs well over 300+ gallons of chemical coatings a week including some automated and U.V. curing machinery... I started with the basics and now I'm in a very technical and precise environment with coatings. I still have more to learn...
I agree with Shane - I used some Meguiers on a mahogany box lid - same issues as the photos. Try Simple Green with a toothbrush on an inconspicuous spot - wipe with damp cloth immediately. My 2 cents.
I have restored many pieces of furniture with white residue in the grain. It usually is done by the user applying the wax and not buffing it off properly. My solution is mixing equal parts of pure gum turpentine and pale boiled linseed oil ( do not use normal linseed oil ) then apply it with the grain with a cloth, or if needed with 0000 grade steel wool. Then as the white disappears use a clean cloth to thoroughly wipe off the excess oil. This will also give the timber a nice finish.