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Thread: Old Dresser restoration, lots of pics

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Savannah, Ga
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    900

    Old Dresser restoration, lots of pics

    This is an old dresser my mom given at Goodwill. It was by the door about to be thrown out and she wanted to see how good I could make it look so she took it.

    Now this may be an antique but it was way too far gone to try and save the integrity of it. So I decided to tighten the hell out of it.

    All the joints were so loose I just pulled it apart with minimal effort. I had to make a few new drawer guides on the inside. It was off square by almost 2". Now it is within 1/16 of an inch square. The top was so warped that if you put the back flat on a table the front was almost 3.5 inches off the table.

    Sanded everything down to a 220 all the way around to remove imperfections. Had to reglue all the dovetails for the drawers. The sides were so far gone I had to replace them with 3/16 birch ply. I don't know what kind of wood the dresser was but it was close enough in color to match.

    The stain is a first coat of Provincial Minwax. Wasn't happy with the tone so I darkened it with a heavy second coat or Dark Walnut Minwax. The finish is a base coat of Teak Oil with 4 coats of 50/50 Helmsmann poly and Teak oil mix, sanding with 600 grit between coats. I have been told this isn't a good finishing technique and I will stay away from it from now on but it still came out looking great. Will sit in a spare bedroom of my mom's and never be used anyways.
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    Last edited by Joe Shinall; 04-27-2010 at 12:24 AM.
    I'm a Joe of all trades. It's a first, it'll catch on.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Savannah, Ga
    Posts
    900
    Ok, so not as many pictures as I hoped for. i am missing a folder of during pictures. Guess this will have to do.

    Now here is the after:
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Joe Shinall; 04-27-2010 at 12:07 AM.
    I'm a Joe of all trades. It's a first, it'll catch on.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Conway, Arkansas
    Posts
    608
    That is an impressive transformation, great work!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Stony Plain, Alberta
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    2,698
    Looks like that dresser will get a second life.
    Nice work on the restoration Joe.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Atlanta , Ga.
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    3,970
    Jam up job on the piece that had been declared dead on arrival. You did justice to the old piece. I used to pick up old pieces like that to re-do and donate to battered women.. homeless.. etc. shelters. Good to give them a new life as someone will appreciate so...why not?
    Sarge..

    Woodworkers' Guild of Georgia
    Laissez Les Bons Temps Rouler

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Savannah, Ga
    Posts
    900
    Thanks everybody. I took my time with it and tried some things I never tried before. It was interesting to see how simple it was put together. I am thinking about going around and finding some other pieces like it as far as condition and I like your idea John. Would be nice to do what I can and give something to some charities. There is an orphanage up the road that my dad actually grew up in so I might see if they need some stuff.
    I'm a Joe of all trades. It's a first, it'll catch on.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    KC, MO
    Posts
    2,038
    Super nice REDO!! Well done.........

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    sLower Delaware
    Posts
    5,463
    Nice job! I have done several old and battered pieces. Even the ones that didn't have the best construction still had some pretty wood. They have a heck of a lot more character when finished (IMO) than anything you could find at Walmart or even a decent furniture store where every piece is one of thousands that look exactly like it.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Winterville, NC (eastern NC)
    Posts
    1,455
    Joe, you performed an excellent transformation on the dresser. The original photos looks like it was on its way to the landfill. I have rebuilt several pieces similar to this over the years, so I know the challenges you faced.
    One thing the rebuilding process can show you; how not to build a piece of furniture. Some of the older pieces show short cuts, use of a soft wood for drawer runners, and the use of enough nails to build a battleship.
    But the before & after photos make great advertising if you ever decide to get into the refinishing business.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Savannah, Ga
    Posts
    900
    Thanks guys. yeah Mike, I saw they nailed everything together. No screws and no glue from what I can see. Definitely shortcut. It's not going anywhere now! There's about 20 screws in the top from the bottom side to keep the warped top from going anywhere.

    I thought about getting into the refinishing business. I have done some pieces for friends and family friends and actually made some good money and get to work in the shop at the same time. But I need a bigger shop to do it. I can only take on one piece at a time right now due to shop limitations. But that will change in less than a year with the new shop!
    I'm a Joe of all trades. It's a first, it'll catch on.

  11. #11

    Incredible

    My first response was 'are you *sure* thats the same dresser?'
    very beautiful refinish, gave that piece a new lease on life.

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