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Old 08-05-07, 11:50 AM   #1
Snicklefritz
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removing stains from a wood table

Someone put a drinking glass down on an antique end table and it left a ring shaped stain behind. How do you get rid of this??

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Old 08-05-07, 06:38 PM   #2
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I'd guess the table top has a shellac finish which is susceptible to damage by water. Let me look through my old copies of Fine Woodworking and see if they have any recommendations...
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Old 08-05-07, 06:47 PM   #3
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On my grandparents old table like that, the stains go away after a while.
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Old 08-05-07, 07:00 PM   #4
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First, if this end table is truly an antique, worth big $, or something you cherish, then I'd take it to a professional furniture refinisher. If not...

According to Fine Woodworking (#149, page 63), "Most damage near the top (referring to a white ring or a whitish, foggy area) can be rubbed out with some steel wool and mineral oil, rubbing compound or even fine sandpaper. The whitish color disappears rather quickly, and once removed, the finish can be rubbed back out to the original sheen. If the finish is lacquer or shellac, a light padding with a rag moistened with denatured alcohol will remove the white spot. Dampen the rage just enough that it feels like the tip of a dog's nose--moist but not dripping wet--and use a back-and-forth pendulum motion to remove the white spot working with the direction of the grain."

I'd start with the latter approach (denatured alcohol). If that doesn't work, then I'd move up to steel wool and mineral oil.
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Old 08-05-07, 07:03 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by vpiuva View Post
Seems like someone recommended oxalic acid for this question in an earlier thread.
It wasn't me...but the article in Fine Woodworking that I mentioned above talks about stripping the finish and using oxalic acid IF the damage from moisture has eaten through the finish and discolored the wood below. I was hoping the damage wasn't that severe.
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Old 08-05-07, 07:09 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Snicklefritz View Post
Someone put a drinking glass down on an antique end table and it left a ring shaped stain behind. How do you get rid of this??
Sand it out with said person's tongue
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Old 08-05-07, 07:19 PM   #7
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On my grandparents old table like that, the stains go away after a while.
Yes. And there is a lesson there.
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