One of the greatest finishing challenges when fixing a scratch on a piece of furniture is matching the repair to the surrounding wood. The first challenge is matching the stain color, and the second is duplicating the original finish.
A nasty scratch such as this one presents two refinishing challenges: First, matching the stain color, and second, duplicating the original finish.
Stain the Scratch – If the scratch has penetrated the finish and changed the color of the wood (Photo above), then begin by restoring the color. The easiest way I’ve found to do this is by using a stain marker (Fig. 1). Eight colors of stain markers are available from Minwax or Olympic. Sometimes, a combination of two colors will do the trick, so you may want to experiment on a scrap piece.
Replace the Finish – After letting the stain dry for four hours, the next step is repairing the finish. The idea is to carefully “paint” a fine line of finish directly on the scratch (Fig. 2). Wipe off any finish that lands outside the scratch.
Match the Sheen – When the polyurethane dries (4-6 hours later), chances are the sheen of the repair won’t match the table exactly.To address this, apply a thin layer of finish to the entire tabletop (Fig. 3).
If you can still feel the scratch, lightly sand the area while the finish is wet to smooth it out (Fig. 4).
After smoothing, take a cloth and remove as much finish as you can from the tabletop. The thin layer of finish that remains creates a nice, uniform sheen on the entire table.
|Once you find a color match, rub the tip of the stain marker along the scratch. Use a cloth to remove excess stain.
||When the stain has dried, use an artist’s brush to apply Minwax Fast-Drying Polyurethane to the scratch.
|To match the sheen of the repair to the table, wipe a thin layer of Minwax Wipe-On Poly over the entire tabletop.
||With the finish still wet, gently sand the scratch with 600-grit sandpaper to smooth it. Then remove excess finish.
Have a nice weekend,