Just Say NO to Dip Stripping Furniture
June 21, 2018 05:38:45pm
The first step in nearly any furniture refinishing project is to remove any remainder of the existing finish. This removal process can be messy and time-consuming, so it’s natural to look for alternative, easier ways to do it. However, when it comes to removing the prior coatings on a piece of wood furniture, shortcuts can end up doing severe damage to your furniture.
So, what’s the difference between dip stripping and hand stripping furniture?
- Dip Stripping – The dip stripping process is quick and easy, but is very hard on the furniture itself. First, your fine, antique wood furniture is dipped into a vat filled with solvents. It’s left in the vat for several minutes (or longer) so that the chemicals in the solvents can react to the furniture’s existing finish. The furniture is then removed from the vat, scrubbed, rinsed, and left to dry. In the dip stripping process, the furniture is submerged fully, allowing the solvents to seep into all cracks and crevices of the furniture, and the chemical solvents that the furniture is dipped into are extremely harsh, with the goal of loosening the existing finish or coating as quickly as possible. The solvents do remove the finish, but they are so harsh that they also tend to cause the joints to come unglued, loosen the veneer, and can break down or weaken the wood itself.
- Hand Stripping – The process of stripping the finish from furniture by hand is much gentler on furniture but is still effective at removing the existing finish in preparation for new finish to be applied. Chemical solvents are still used, but they are rubbed on by hand, in a much smaller, safer amount. Your furniture is set on a large, shallow tray, and solvent is dispersed in small doses and wiped or brushed onto the wood, then wiped away with a cloth. This process is more time consuming but far safer on the furniture and just as effective at removing existing finish.
In short, the existing finish MUST come off of your furniture before it is refinished, and this removal process can be done in either a destructive way or in a safe way. Highly rated furniture refinishing shops know the importance of removing finish carefully by hand, and shun the use of dip stripping. Your antique wood furniture and heirlooms deserve extreme care and professional treatment, and that means saying “NO” to dip stripping.
Jax Furniture Refinishing & Upholstering is the best Jacksonville FL refinishing shop and the service to trust with your treasured furniture. Our craftsmen have spent decades honing their technique and have a genuine passion for restoring, repairing, and refinishing furniture. Homeowners throughout Jacksonville, Ponte Vedra Beach, Mandarin, Riverside, and throughout Northeast Florida rely on our expertise to restore their furniture with unsurpassed care, skill, and professionalism. Let us provide the same outstanding service for you!