Furniture Refinishing

Furniture Refinishing
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Monday, May 17, 2021

Restorations on Antique Furniture

  Our specialty is restoring old wooden furniture to help preserve history.  Call on Dave's Refinishing service, if you are looking to have special care on your pieces.  We have pickup and delivery service for most furniture we work on.  We work on only one or two customers at a time, to give your furniture the best possible attention to detail.  Call today and Dave will be happy to help with your #furniturerefinishing needs. 815/795-3417. or go to to learn more about Dave's services. Mobile Users Click to Call 815.795.3417

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Re-finishing without stripping

  I find it amusing that I keep hearing the phrase "refinish with out stripping".  Some places sell products that can hide scratches, that is wiped on to an existing finish, and they say re-finish with-out stripping.  Technically this is not possible.  These products are just a band-aid on a wound and most of the time it just makes a mess.  To re-finish, means to take off the old finish and put a new one on.  It is not possible to re-finish anything unless you take off the old finish.  Hence the word "Re".  Any other process is either a re-furbish, touch-up, re-work, or topcoat, not re-finish.  So if you want a piece re-finished, then the old finish has to be removed in order to do just that.  A finish on wood protects the wood and when ever someone puts something on top of an existing finish,they are messing with the finish and not replacing it.  Same thing with oils and polish.  People think that they are protecting the wood by polishing, but that is what the finish is for.  Polishes just mess with the finishes that are protecting the wood, and not the wood itself.  Hope this clears up some of the confusion caused by people trying to sell their furniture care products.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Wood Color Samples

  I occasionally get ask if I have any color samples to choose from.
In my business, I custom mix colors for each piece that I work on.
So I only have a few generic samples made up of some basic colors.
  When refinishing furniture, you never know what the piece will look like until it is stripped.  Because there are so many ways to color and finish furniture.  You can take two identical pieces and stain one brown and another golden oak.  Then after stripping them they may look similar to each other or completely different. It depends on the finish that was put on over the stain, the drying process, and also the brand and types of stain and finishes.  Once a piece has been finished, the wood is sealed. So after stripping a piece it will not absorb stain like it did when the wood was raw.  So this is why custom colors have to be made after we see the results of stripping.
  This is why I always ask my customers to bring me something they want to match to. Then we do all that is possible to match their choice.  It is best to bring something like a drawer, a door, or a small piece with the color they would like to achieve.  Sometimes we have to use toners, which is colored lacquers to adjust the colors.  This helps a lot.
  If I were a furniture manufacture, or a cabinet shop, I would have samples to choose from, because then we are starting out with new wood, and set colors and types of wood to choose from. This is the only time samples make sense.  There is just no way I can show a sample and honestly tell my customer your furniture will look just like this sample.  Because it might or it might not.  This is where the expertise comes in.  We have to custom make the colors for each piece in order to get close to the desired effects that the customer wants.
  So what I am trying to say, is if I made my samples the same as the furniture being worked on then stripped the sample, it will give an idea of the end results for the piece in question.  The problem is we have no idea what kind of stain, curing process, and finish that was used in the first place, so this option would be a big guessing game.
  I usually do not have any problems making the colors my customers want.  It is not easy to do, but that is why there are re-finishers like me to restore your piece the way you want it.  So when it comes to color samples, they just serve no productive purpose for my line of work.  They are only used as a guideline in color matching. 

Monday, July 3, 2017

Polishing furniture or cleaning?

 When it comes to using a polish on wood furniture, I recommend only cleaners, such as Murphy's oil soap or a mild soapy solution.  If your  polish does not say cleaner on the label, then do not use it.  Oils from our own skin and every day grime can build up on furniture, especially where touched with hands often.  The oils from our skin builds up and start to soften and become part of the finish.  It makes the finish come off easily and can also turn the finish dark where handled.  When you try to clean it off, it will remove some of the finish with it.  If you  clean periodically with cleaner, it does not have a chance to soften the finish and weaken it.  Obviously the polish industry will not tell you this, because it would cut into their profits.  I have to thank them for keeping me busy restoring furniture that polish has destroyed.
  Most dirt and grime that gets on furniture is water soluble and will clean off easily with a damp rag.  I always tell my customers to use a damp rag followed by a dry soft cloth.  This is because some people use a wet rag and leave water residue on the surface, which is not recommended.  Water is woods worst enemy.  If your messes do not clean up with water, then you will end up calling a re-finisher like me, to fix the mess you make trying to clean things that should not have been near the furniture in the first place.  Like glues, oils and fingernail polish and removers just to name a few.
  Over the years I have also discovered that using polish on furniture makes it more susceptible to water rings, white marks from hot pads under a hot pot, and moisture trapped in the finish.  This is less likely to happen if polish is never used.  After about 6 years of using polish on furniture you will start to wonder why all the sudden you are having issues with the finish.
  A finish such a lacquer, paint, or varnish is put on wood to protect the wood.  When you use polish, you are not helping the wood that is sealed by the finish.  You are just messing with the finish, not the wood.  A lot of people think that the polish is protecting the wood,but that is what the finish is for.  When furniture looks dry and someone tells you to use an oil polish on to rejuvenate the wood, you are just messing with the finish and if the finish is worn off, then you just make it very difficult for a re-finisher like me to do a nice job.  That is because where ever the finish is missing, polished soaks into the wood itself and discolors it and also make it difficult for a new finish adhere properly.
  Remember that a finish, is what gives the furniture it's sheen and protects the wood.  Not the polishes.  Polishes just make the furniture in your home, need restorations.  If this happens to you, call me at 815/795-3417 and I will help you get your furniture back to looking like it should.........Dave F.
 Dave's Touch-Ups, Inc. Marseilles, Illinois.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Prices Increases keep hurting us all.

   For three years in a row we keep getting notices from our material suppliers, that due to the cost of making and shipping finish materials, there has been an increase in cost that is really getting way out of hand. With EPA regulations, taxes, and special shipping fees, we also must increase our refinishing cost. Starting April 30th 2013, we will be increasing our prices by 15%, which is less than the increases we have had to endure over the last three years. We can no longer stay in business, unless we push this cost on to our customers. With todays gas prices, this is not helping our economy at all.
 We will continue to try and save our customers money in any way we can and will continue to be competitive in the industry. We strive to give our customers the best prices we possibly can. Please understand, that we do not have a choice if we want to stay in the refinishing business. We will try to find the best materials, but we all know we get what we pay for. So we will not settle on cheap brands, that do not hold up well or meet our top quality standards.
  We promise, at Dave's Touch-Ups, Inc., you will not pay more than your fair share.
 Please visit us at our official web page. to learn more about Dave's services.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Water is Woods worst enemy

Water is the cause of most of my work. I get furniture with raised grain and water rings from a glass sitting on the furniture with out a coaster. I have seen the best finishes get ruined by water. Floods, leaky ceilings and spills that don't get cleaned up in time. Most finishes can hold up to water, but only for so long. If it sits on a finish long enough, it will either make a ring or penetrate the finish and start attacking the wood. The best thing you can do is use coasters, and wipe up any water as soon as possible. Some finishes are more prone to damage, because they have to much polish built up on them. This increases the chance of white water rings. I recommend you clean your furniture with a damp cloth followed by a soft dry cloth. Polish is not needed, as the finish is what is supposed to make the wood look good. When you polish furniture, you are polishing the finish, and it just builds up over time. Most dirt and grime is water soluble and will clean off just fine with a damp cloth. If you can not get it off with this method, then you are probably in trouble already, and may need more than a cleaning to remove it. An example would be fingernail polish. This will require stronger solvents and may need refinishing. So just remember that water is woods worst enemy and should be avoided at all cost if you want your furniture to stay looking nice......Dave's Touch-Ups, Inc.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Refurbish verses Refinish

When it comes to working on furniture, I have a lot of people ask me, what is the difference between a refurbish job, as opposed to a refinish job?

It's really quite simple.

If we refinish your furniture, then we will use a stripper and remove the existing finish(s).

If we refurbish you furniture, then we will either clean, touch-up, and topcoat it.

Or rub out scratches, and match the existing finish with a new finish. Sometimes all that is needed is a good cleaning only. This would also fall into the refurbish category.

Give Dave a call and we will do our best to salvage you precious pieces.

Furniture Touchups, and Refinishing, by (Dave's Touch-Ups, Inc.)

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