Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

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desredmon
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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby desredmon » Tue Jul 10, 2018 4:03 pm

Sorry to say I am more comfortable with a gouge or fuller than I am with technology, so here are additional image links...
https://scontent.ftol1-1.fna.fbcdn.net/ ... e=5BDF6DFA
https://scontent.ftol1-1.fna.fbcdn.net/ ... e=5BA08AE2
https://scontent.ftol1-1.fna.fbcdn.net/ ... e=5BA23A7A

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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby AsonnyA » Tue Jul 10, 2018 5:07 pm

That pic didn't do me much good. You have a Yahoo account? If so, load the pics (create a Photostream) on Flickr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/tags/yahoo/
Picasa, Photobucket, etc, are other free photo posting sites. Then post a link to the/your photo site.

What kind of wood is the cabinet made of?

You state you *dissolved the top coat with denatured alcohol, then later you state you think the top coat is lacquer. Those statements don't jive. Alcohol dissolves shellac, not lacquer. Acetone (lacquer thinner) dissolves lacquer. I suspect you should have used a (rattle can, spray) chemical stripper, like KleanStrip. It would have sprayed into those nooks and crannies, then scrubbing with a stiff plastic brush and tooth brush, then scrub-rinse with mineral spirits, would have made quick work of the stripping process.... pretty much be done with the stripping head aches you seem to have had. *At the end of your post, you state you're not sure what the finish is. If alcohol melts it, it's shellac.

If the cabinet's finish is shellac, then you may have an easier time refinishing, than if it's lacquer. If it's shellac, it may have been tinted, but more likely a stain was also used. Your pic suggests, to me, the finish or stain may be or is related to a red mahogany color, but I really can't tell or analyse much. You might could try a spray stripper, on an inconspicuous spot, to see if that improves your finish/stain/coloration removal.

> My goal:
> To restore the original amber over red-brown finish with a fairly even finish with the original visual depth of finish.

Amber shellac comes to mind, as does red mahogany. If you opt for this combo, test the application on the backside of the curio or on a piece of scrap (same kind of) wood. You might consider thinning the red mahogany solution (see below paragraph) and apply several applications of the lighter shade, to creep up on the desired shade you are wanting. Test all your solutions, see how they pan out. Write down your solution recipes, as you go.... don't rely on memory.... , so you'll know what recipe works best. Allow your testing to dry, for appropriate dried (color) look.

Other options: Lacquer is easily tinted with TranTstint dye. You can make a non-flammable stain using water + TranTint.
Can use alcohol to mix a stain solution, also. Test some recipes for best coloration. http://homesteadfinishingproducts.com/t ... quid-dyes/

If you commit to a final stain application and it's not quite right, like not dark enough, then tint your finish and creep up on the better shade of color. These techniques require practice, to get things right. Do some testing.... lots of testing, if need be.

I'm not sure what else to comment on, about. Bob might have more or better insights into this project.

Sonny

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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby AsonnyA » Tue Jul 10, 2018 5:11 pm

I see you posted more pics. I'll look at them more closely, later. .... have some other tasks to do, right now.

Sonny

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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby Bob Boardman » Wed Jul 11, 2018 8:43 am

Sonny - my thoughts/comments are identical to yours, esp. about using stripper and it being shellac finish.
Only other thing I can think of is that the red color on the cleaned board in the 1st pic posted is definitely not a pigment stain. Could be dye or some type of mordant stain ike iron and apple vinegar or muriatic acid. Usually these stains fade over time, but if covered with a dark mix of finish and color, they can seep into the wood.

Dsredmon: You could try a 2 part bleach to remove the color if you wanted to get to a "clean slate". Other than that I'd listen to Sonny
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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby desredmon » Wed Jul 11, 2018 1:36 pm

https://www.flickr.com/gp/141355217@N07/6C7ZH4 I think that should work...

It must be a shellac finish because I have almost all the finish stripped with just the alcohol, the biggest time killer is carving out new pieces to replace missing or broken pieces.
I think I will try using the transtint dye you suggested with the amber shellac top coat on a few scrap pieces I had to replace and see if I can come close.

Thank you both for the insights!

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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby AsonnyA » Wed Jul 11, 2018 5:11 pm

> https://www.flickr.com/gp/141355217@N07/6C7ZH4 I think that should work...

Yep. Flickr is easy to load, use, etc. - https://www.flickr.com/photos/43836144@N04/

In selecting your shellac, select Sealcoat. It's dewaxed. Home Depot and Lowes, here (Lafayette, La), stopped carrying Sealcoat. I do have dewaxed flakes, but it takes a while to dissolve the flakes.... just an inconvenience, though.

As to your TransTint mix/solution, if you use alcohol or water, then you might wet/dampen your woodwork, first, before applying the dye solution. Test on some scrap. By dampening your work piece, first, you are better able to smoothen out, spread out the coloring, as you wipe/brush on the dye solution. If you apply the dye solution to dry wood, the color might absorb/concentrate on a flooded spot. The wet surface allows for less absorption in one spot, hence allowing you to spread the solution for best even coloring over the whole area being worked, i.e., no moddling of color coverage. Not sure I explained this well enough.... Do you understand what I am trying to say, here?

Sonny

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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby desredmon » Fri Jul 13, 2018 7:10 am

I think I understand, the idea being to dampen the surface just enough to avoid the very dry areas absorb more dye than those places that are somewhat less dry. Glad I have started adding the site to my morning browsing. Thanks again for the advice.

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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby desredmon » Wed Jul 18, 2018 11:40 am

OK another beginning dye user question, is it normal for dye to not be as prominent as the premade stains I am used to? I usually use minwax stains and I seem to get more differential between harder and softer lines in the wood but less overall coloration with the dye than I kind of expected. I used a starting recipe of 1c denatured alcohol, 1c lacquer thinner, 3/8oz transtint red mahogany 1/8 oz medium brown transtint which I brushed onto my test pieces as a drench coat and allowed 5 minutes for penetration before wiping off with a cloth rag. I like what I am seeing but am struggling to understand how it is working. With the dye being finer particular medium, I think that what I am seeing is the color is extra dark in mixture but by the time the carrier evaporates the color is deeper into the wood resulting in a less vibrant surface color (judging by the edges of the test piece). Am I right that they dye should look somewhat darker in suspension than it will appear on the finished piece (accounting for the porosity of the wood)?

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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby Bob Boardman » Wed Jul 18, 2018 1:57 pm

Minwax stains are a mix of pigments and dyes, and usually have a little sealer in them. Sealers are light coats of finish. Pigments make these stains appear darker. Additionally, the pigments sit ON the wood, whereas dyes get INTO the wood yielding a darker color.
And Yes, you're correct. The dye will usually appear darker in solution than in the wood.

Some things for you to try on your samples:
1) Apply a light coat of finish to an area that has some dye on it. Finish acts like a "lens" and adds depth to the dye.

2) Apply some diluted finish to an area that has some dye on it. Dilute the finish 2 parts water to 1 part poly/finish (assuming it's a water base finish). Apply a coat and let it dry; then you can either: A) apply another coat of your current dye, or B) make a stronger dye solution. Apply these and evaluate. If you don't like the look, wipe off the new coat of dye after a minute or so. The light oat of finish you applied will prevent the new coat from sinking into the wood. If you like the look, follow steps you used in 1st dye application.

One of the advantages of dye, is that you can "build" the color to the exact shade you want. If it's too light, seal what you have then add another coat of same dye mix; if too red, seal and add a lighter brown solution; if too brown, seal and add light red solution, etc.
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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby desredmon » Mon Sep 03, 2018 4:34 pm

A big thank you for all you guys’ advice, the woodworking and wood finishing part of the project is finally done (been a long summer with school and overtime at work). I am attaching the pictures of the final wood frame while I still must wait on the resilvered mirrors to arrive and reinstall most of the glass...

https://www.dropbox.com/s/vuoujlk3xbu2j ... 1.jpg?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/axgdjcttptbzn ... 2.jpg?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/9jsvjhckickjs ... a.jpg?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/qru74dnfwiazh ... b.jpg?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/qtw926k2gzgrk ... c.jpg?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/rxqqwlb8rhjff ... d.jpg?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/qkm0bv4lxu6wh ... e.jpg?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/svfbzbpav9unk ... 3.jpg?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/jykkg60i7krx2 ... a.jpg?dl=0

In all honesty the dye is still somewhat splotchy because I tried to minimize the amount I reduced the thickness. And I left the original 1940’s restorations’ veneer on the bottom shelf though to highlight the age of the piece…
Any advice (or criticism) on anything else I missed guys?

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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby Bob Boardman » Mon Sep 03, 2018 6:27 pm

I think you did a fine job! Congrats!
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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby AsonnyA » Mon Sep 03, 2018 7:19 pm

That looks really nice. Good job.

Originally had curved glass on each side (installed from the inside)? Protect and/or be careful with that front door glass. Curved glass is really really expensive!!!

After about 75 years, old glass will start to have a blue shade of color to it, an effect of UV light. Also, glass is a super-cooled liquid and after many years, it will flow downward, having a thicker bottom, than top. The thicker bottom will often have a waviness to it. Old glass panes with bubbles in it: the bubbles will elongate as the glass flows downward.

If or when need be:
Keep an eye out for curved glass cabinets, say, on Craigslist and the like. You might can find a cabinet with exact size curved glass panes.... probably can buy a used cabinet much cheaper, than buying a single new curved glass pane. Though one can order a particular curved glass, many old pieces have standard size panes, so you might can luck up and find a match/replacement from another cabinet.

Sonny

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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby desredmon » Wed Oct 17, 2018 3:38 pm

Final images, with resilvered mirrors (yah mercury mirrors are a problem), and all of the components added. I could not have come close to this good of a job without you guys' help and advice.
https://photos.app.goo.gl/2mxyXDYGxQ764Z8k6
https://photos.app.goo.gl/7wcoAcZFebXX7shr5
https://photos.app.goo.gl/79jBimx7MnFdu5Ju6

Next project will be restoring a 1940's desk with blotched finish...

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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby Bob Boardman » Wed Oct 17, 2018 4:29 pm

That's some fine looking work. =D>

Good job with the color
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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby AsonnyA » Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:07 am

[quote="Bob Boardman"]That's some fine looking work. =D>

Not quite so fast, Bob. Desmond has screwed up, royally!

Desmond, you need to install a few pics of Grandma and Great Grandma inside the curio.....

Otherwise, very nice job.

Sonny

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Re: Antique lacquer over red pigment or dye restoration (should be photo heavy)

Postby Bob Boardman » Thu Oct 18, 2018 9:17 am

Sonny - Right you are! Good catch. :lol:
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