Wednesday, July 16, 2014


In my real life, I do things that are not woodworking-related, and there has been a lot of that lately which makes time in the shop all but a distant memory. At the same time, the final steps of the secretary rehab involved many coats of stain (something I rarely use) to try to make the coloring a little more uniform between different woods of different ages. So I was able to every day or so quickly apply-another-coat-of-this or sand-that.

The cedar boards used for the new back started like this:

But after staining, shellacing, and waxing, they almost look at home:

The gallery was very challenging. Someone had painted part of the interior at some point and it was very difficult to sand it off without disassembling the whole thing, which was outside the scope of this repair (and budget). I did the best I could, and applied many layers of gel-stain which sits on top of the paint a bit. Lots of shellac, lots of sanding... and it is ok. Much better than it was, anyway.

Not a lot I can do about the door wood not really matching the interior desk surface, but it is all cleaned up and refinished and nicely smooth to the touch. The new hardware works great. The drawers are waxed and operate smoothly. This thing is ready for another hundred years of use and abuse.