Label remover trick
Here’s a slick route to remove those pesky labels from boards and plywood. Heat the label with a hair dryer and peel it off with a putty knife or sharp chisel. Go slow and tug gently and it’ll came by in one piece and leave no scraps behind to tease away. Even though the place will seem clean, there will be a little adhesive left on the wood, and the label footprint will reappear the second largest you set a finish over it. So rub the spot with acetone and sand softly to remove it wholly. What a handy label remover! Thanks to Kurt Blankholm for this hot tip-off. Find out another great label remover with a can of WD-4 0.
Plus: Incredible Wood Finishing Tips
Hand-Sand the CurvesSand curved surfaces–and other areas an electric sander can’t reach–by hand. Treat all areas equally, employing the same progression of sandpaper grits for both hand and power sanding. Start with 80 -grit to sand away blemishes, then use 120 -grit and finally 180 -grit. Employing these exact grits isn’t vital( 100 -1 50 -1 80 works too ), but it’s important to progress in steps, removing deeper scratches and leaving finer scratches each time.
Sand Without ScratchesA random orbital sander leaves scratchings that are practically invisible, so you are able to sand across joints where grain changes direction. But move slowly( about 1 inch per second) and apply light pressure. Otherwise, you’ll get swirly scratchings.
Test Stains Thoroughly! You can’t rely on those stain samples on display in stores. Actual color differs a lot, depending on the type of wood and how you prepared it for finishing. So save scraps from your project, operate them through the same sanding process and use them to test finishes. If you didn’t build the item you’re finishing, run tests on an inconspicuous area–the underside of a table, for example. Test stain on scraps to get the coloring you want. Leaving excess stain on the wood for longer or shorter periods won’t affect the color much. If it’s a custom colouring you’re after, you can mix stains of the same brand.
Test Clear Finishes, TooOil-based poly has an amber tone that can dramatically change the color of stained or unstained timber. Water-based polyurethane affects the color only slightly. The same stain was used on the samples shown in this photo.
Sand With the GrainSand with the grain when hand sanding or use a belt sander. Scratches are hard to see when they operate parallel to the grain. But even the lightest scratches across the grain are obvious, especially after staining.
Inspect Before You StainTurn out the illuminates and glisten illumination at a low slant across the wood to reveal flaws. Flag the problem areas with masking tape and sand them out.
Consider a Wood ConditionerSome timbers absorb stain unevenly, which causes dark blotches to seem. Birch, maple, pine and cherry can all play this ugly trick on you. It’s hard to eliminate this effect, but you can limit it by applying a wood conditioner before staining. Conditioner also avoids wood’s end grain from assimilating more stain than the face grain. Get a quart at a home centre or paint store.
Renew Woodwork Without RefinishingIf your stained and varnished woodwork is looking a little shabby, you can save day and money with this quick fix. You don’t have to strip the finish from your dingy woodwork. Just head to the store and pick up timber stain that’s a close match. We like gel stain for this fix, but any wood stain will work. Start your renewal project by cleaning the woodwork with soapy water. Rinse with clear water, then gently scrape off any paint splatters with a plastic putty knife. When the wood is dry, dip a rag into the stain and wipe it over the timber. Bare places and scratches will pick up the stain. Finish by wiping the woodwork with a clean cloth to remove the excess stain. After the stain dries for a few days, you can add a coat of furniture wax or wipe-on poly to really liven up the old timber.
Better Brushes are the KeyUsually, a brush is the best tool for applying polyurethane. For water-based poly, a synthetic brush( such as nylon or polyester) is best. For oil-based poly, use a natural-bristle brush. In either occurrence, plan to spend more for a good-quality brush. Quality brushes hold more finish, lay it on smoothly and are less likely to leave lost bristles in your clear coat. If you clean your brush following the end of use, it’ll serve you well far into the future.
Leave Mistakes Alone( Usually) When you notice a run, missed spot or other problem in the polyurethane you applied minutes earlier, you’ll be seduced to brush it out. Don’t. The finish may seem wet, but chances are it’s already sticky, and brushing will only make a mess. There are a couple of exceptions to this rule: You can pop tiny air bubbles with a pin, and you are able to pluck out a hair, a lost bristle or unfortunate flies employing sharp tweezers and a steady hand.
Wipe Instead of BrushWipe oil-based polyurethane onto hard-to-brush surfaces use a soft, lint-free cloth. Wiping leaves a thinner coat than brushing, so you’ll have to apply more coats. Water-based poly becomes sticky too fast for wiping.
Use a Pad on Large AreasApply water-based polyurethane to large surfaces fast by using a paint pad. Water-based poly dries quickly and may not allow enough “wet” time for brushing out big areas.
Spray on the Final CoatHere’s a trick for getting a glass-smooth finish on your next woodworking project. Start by brushing on a coat of gloss polyurethane. Let it dry overnight. Then lightly sand with 320 -grit sandpaper to remove imperfections. Use a tack cloth or vacuum cleaner and soft brush attachment to remove the dust. Repeat this process for the second largest coat. Finish up by spraying on the final coat. You can buy aerosol can of polyurethane in satin, semigloss and gloss finishes. Any of these can go over the gloss coats. Brushing on the first two coats allows you to build up a thicker layer of finish with less cost and attempt than spraying from cans. And utilizing an aerosol can to apply the final coat produces a professional-looking finish, free of brush marks.
Don’t Sand Through the StainWhen sanding between coats, it’s easy to scratch right through the clear coat, removing the stain below. So sand super lightly after the first coat, just enough to cut down any dust whiskers on the surface. If there are bigger problems–such as runs–deal with them after the second coat when you are able to sand a bit harder. To repair rubbed-through spots, merely apply new stain. Immediately wipe away any stain that get on the surrounding polyurethane.
Sand Curves With a PadWhen sanding between coats, smooth curves with a steel fleece replace such as 3M’s Scotchbrite pads. Steel wool leaves fibers behind, which has resulted in stains in the finish.
Sand Fine Surfaces With Wet/ Dry SandpaperLightly sand between coats with 400 -grit wet/ dry sandpaper, which won’t fall apart when it gets wet. A little water provides lubrication and keeps the finish from clogging the paper. Sanding after each coat( except the last) scratches out imperfections and roughens the surface for better adhesion of the next coat. In most cases, this is a quick undertaking, more like wiping the surface than sanding it. When the sanding is done, wipe away the residue with a damp cloth.
Three-Stage Brush-Cleaning SystemSave time and mineral spirits with this three-container brush-cleaning method. Partially fill three receptacles with mineral spirits. When you’re done working for the day, swish your brush around in the first container. Wipe it along the edge of the receptacle to remove as much finish as you can. Then repeat the process in the second container. By now the brush will be pretty clean. Suspend the brush in the third receptacle. Drill a hole in the handle and suspend it from a wire or dowel so that the bristles aren’t resting on the bottom of the container. Put a lid on the first two containers, and wrap plastic wrap or aluminum foil around the brush manage on the third container. You can use the same mineral spirits for several brush cleans. When the first receptacle gets too full of old finish, dump it into a fourth receptacle labeled “used mineral spirits.” Shift the second and third receptacles to positions one and two, and pour clean mineral spirits into the one you emptied and place it at the end of the line. You can reuse the mineral spirits from the “used” container after the finish resolves. Decant it carefully to avoid stirring up the gunk on the bottom.
Scrape Paint FasterSteel scrapers work great–for the first few minutes. Then they need to be sharpened or replaced. But a carbide scraper blade will stay plenty sharp for a long time, even when you’re removing thick paint buildup. In addition to a reversible carbide blade, this heavy-duty scraper has a knob on top for two-handed operation–a must for tough scraping tasks. You can even flip the scraper over and use the knob as a hammer to define protruding siding nails. If you’ve ever rubbed paint from an old home, you know how handy that is.
Work Faster With PyramidsThese handy plastic pyramids hold your project off the surface so you can paint the edges easily. Better yet, you can finish the front of doors( or the top of shelves) without waiting for the back to dry. Paint the back of the door and define it painted side down on the pyramids while you paint the front. The sharp phases on the pyramids will leave only little places on the wet paint, and they’re easy to touch up afterwards. You’ll find plastic pyramids at home centers, paint stores and hardware stores.
Trim-Painting ShortcutIf you have lap siding to paint, you can save a lot of time by painting the edges of window and door casings the same coloring as the siding. Most pros do it this style, and the beauty is , nobody will ever notice this little shortcut. Caulk the joint between the casing and the siding as usual. Then when you paint the siding, just extend the paint onto the edge of the casing instead of meticulously cutting in. If you get paint on the face of the casing, wipe it off with a wet rag to create a neat edge.
Hiding FlawsYou can hide scratchings with permanent-ink felt-tip markers. You can either use the furniture touch-up markers available at hardware stores and home centers, or, to get an exact match, buy markers at an art supply store that carries an array of colorings. For thorough coverage, you may need to dab the ink onto the scratch, let it dry, then even out the color by stroking lightly across it with the tip-off. Keep in mind that colourings tend to darken when they soak into wood fibers.
Clean Dirty, Greasy, Gummy SurfacesThe results of a simple surface cleaning with mineral spirits may astonish you. Polish buildup and the clay embedded in it muddies the finish but will wipe away. Don’t use stronger solvents; they might dissolve the finish itself. Soak a coarse, absorbent, clean cloth with mineral spirits and wipe the finish. Keep applying and wiping until the cloth no longer picks up clay. Then do a final wipe with a fresh, clean cloth. Clean crannies, grooves and engraved areas with cotton swabs dipped in mineral spirits.
Patch GougesFill in gouges with colored putty sticks, sold at most hardware stores and home centres. This putty works well for small holes and nicks but is somewhat trickier to use as a fill for larger injury like we show here. Unlike hardening putties, it remains soft and somewhat flexible, so you have to shape it carefully. And it won’t hold up under heavy wear. Buy several sticks of putty similar to the color of the stain you want to match. Scrape flakes from each, then mixture and knead them with your fingertips until the color is right. The heat from your thumbs also softens the putty for easy application. Induce the patch slightly darker than the furniture; lighter will be more obvious. Press putty tightly into the gouge with a small flat stick, then flatten it and scrape away the excess with the stick’s long edge. Round the end of the stick with sandpaper. Wipe away any putty adhering to the wood around the gouge, and smooth the surface of the putty with a clean cloth. A thin, light-colored line will usually appear around the perimeter of the patch. Use a matching marker to color this line. Spray the patch with two or three quick passes of shellac, then after it dries, a few quick pass of spray lacquer–either high gloss or satin, depending on your furniture’s finish. Never apply lacquer or polyurethane/ varnish directly over a putty patch; it will leave a permanently soft mess. Shellac will harden; however, the patch will remain somewhat pliable under the finish, so don’t endeavor this on a heavy-wear surface.
Wipe Away Scratches and Recoat the SurfaceYou can buff out fine scratchings using very fine( 0000) steel fleece saturated with clear Danish petroleum.( You can also use ultra-fine automotive rubbing compound .) The process shown here only works for scratches in the finish itself , not scratches that are all the way into the stain or the timber. Pour a generous amount of clear or neutral Danish petroleum onto a very fine steel wool pad. Rub the surface with the oil-saturated pad utilizing your flat hand. Rub with the grain, never against it or at an angle to it. Continue scratching until you remove enough of the clear surface finish to eliminate the scratchings, but be careful not to remove any of the stain below the clear finish. Rub not only the scratched region but also the area around it in gradually lessening quantities. Be careful to scratch edges or corners overly; they wear through quickly. Wipe away all the Danish oil with rags or paper towels, then thoroughly clean the entire surface with mineral spirits several times to make sure all the petroleum is removed. If any petroleum remains, the lacquer won’t adhere. Let the surface to dry overnight before applying lacquer. Spray the entire surface with clear lacquer. Move the spray can in one continuous, straight stroke, allowing the spray to extend beyond the edges in all directions. Wipe the nozzle with a cloth after each stroke to prevent drips. Move with the grain, and make sure the slant of the spray remains the same all the way across. Maintain the spraying aimed away from other surfaces that you don’t want coated, or mask them with newspaper. CAUTION: Rags and steel wools saturated with Danish oil can spontaneously combust if left bunched up. Dry them outdoors, spread out loosely, when the petroleum has dried, you can safely throw the rag and steel fleece in the junk.
Read more: familyhandyman.com