Has anyone refinished a natural wood finish?

Jazzhead

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I am thinking about refinishing my rack tom due to some nicks and dings from the snare drum of the PO.
The rest of the kit is pretty clean and not in a condition to be refinished at all.
The finish is natural maple satin oil from 25-30 years ago, is it possible to refinish just the tom and still match it to the rest of the kit? Has anyone got some experience with this situation?
 

amosguy

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Only refinishing a whole set. Not matching an existing set. Might consult a furniture refinisher and see what advice they can offer, especially with a vintage finish.
 

JazzDrumGuy

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Can you touch up or do you think you have to do the whole thing? What is the "snare drum of the P.O."? I would think get some satin finish and hand apply but I need to see what you have going on.....
 

kb

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I don't know what the "PO" is....

I think if you re-finish just one drum out of three or four, it will NOT MATCH.

25 years of exposure will have altered the tint or color of the drums.

So, either refinish them all, or none of them.

And anyway, I wouldn't care about a few "nicks and dings," they still SOUND the same, don't they?

Good luck!
 

Jazzhead

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Can you touch up or do you think you have to do the whole thing? What is the "snare drum of the P.O."? I would think get some satin finish and hand apply but I need to see what you have going on.....
PO means previous owner, it is used a lot when dealing with cars, not much with drums I guess haha I meant the PO let the snare drum hit the tom while playing. That might work but I am not a pro in doing that.
If you check out Charile Watts Gretsch kit, it has the same finish almost and his snare rash I think was touched up but it looks dark only at that spot, not sure what he did there.
 

Jazzhead

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I don't know what the "PO" is....

I think if you re-finish just one drum out of three or four, it will NOT MATCH.

25 years of exposure will have altered the tint or color of the drums.

So, either refinish them all, or none of them.

And anyway, I wouldn't care about a few "nicks and dings," they still SOUND the same, don't they?

Good luck!
I don’t think I will refinish everything since the rest of the kit is in very nice shape. The dings do not affect the sound at all, I was just thinking it would be good if I could just refinish the tom and still match the rest of the kit but yes this is a 30 year old kit, it won’t be the same.
 

JazzDrumGuy

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Well I learned something about the PO! As for a Charlie Watts kit, interesting you mentioned that. I've studied his kit color a lot recently having scored a 13/16/22 Gretsch SSB kit (I know he has a RB from '57 or so). I also scored a 12" RB shell and I am making a C.W. tribute kit. I tried numerous dyes, stains and D.I.Y. color methods but had no luck getting an aged look. A DFO-er replied to my post & said to use amber shellac. I've almost finished the shells but that was a fantastic suggestion and they look nice and aged and have that dark yellowed look! It's pre-mixed from Home Depot and is a real pain to apply (doing it by hand) as it dries super fast, but the color is pretty much what I was going for.'

Granted, I had raw shells and so far, I've only done the 13/16/22 and all do match. The 12" shell wood seems a tad darker but I have not yet stained it. I am doing 3 coats with light 400 grit sanding in between, and I may either leave it or put a coat of poly on to protect it....still debating. This may work for you.........good luck.
 

Jazzhead

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I don’t think I would want to touch it myself. I might mess it up which might force me to refinish the 12” or the whole kit. I will show it to a woodworker or a drum restoration shop and see what they say. Worst case scenario I will keep it the way it is, it actually gives the kit some mojo but I was just trying to see if I could get in it fixed to match the rest of the kit since there is hardly any scratches on other 4 drums.
 

MillerMav

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I would also say either don't touch the drum or redo the whole kit so it matches. I know that's not what you want to hear but it won't match. Also, I agree that taking it to a furniture restoration shop would be the only trusted way to do one drum and have it get close to the rest of the kit. They would certainly have the knowledge to get it close but even they will tell you that age cannot be matched.

I am actually getting ready to "restore" a late 90's Mapex Saturn in natural wax satin finish. I am doing the whole kit because I have yet to find anyone who can tell me how they did the wax finish on that one (even the furniture guy who sprays my shells has no idea) so I am just going to strip them down and do a satin shellac which should get it pretty close.
 

levelpebble

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I also have used Howard's Restore a Finish and the second-stage Howard's Bees wax, on two M-stamp maple Slingerland kits, both with excellent results. It comes in several different shades. I would not recommend using it with steel wool - cotton rags did the trick for me. Let me see if i can dig up some before/after shots.
 

Jazzhead

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I also have used Howard's Restore a Finish and the second-stage Howard's Bees wax, on two M-stamp maple Slingerland kits, both with excellent results. It comes in several different shades. I would not recommend using it with steel wool - cotton rags did the trick for me. Let me see if i can dig up some before/after shots.
It will be great if you can share some pics.
 

levelpebble

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It will be great if you can share some pics.
Attached are some before and during shots of the FT...

Here's the DFO sales ad showing the final product.


I more recently used the same product (in a maple color) for another M stamp set. Have to wait til tonight to post those photos.

..20170402_181208.jpg20170402_181825.jpg20170402_210059.jpg20170402_214507.jpg
 

dboomer

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Howards is a reamalgamator, which means is is a very, very slow stripper. So it melts the top 20% of the finish without softening it all the way through. Then you use the steel wool to essentially smear that newly melted fining down into the scratches. If you are not dealing with deep gouges it will make scratches and water rings disappear. It really only works on lacquer.

Furniture restorers use steel wool to avoid getting lint into the wet finish.
 

levelpebble

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Here's before and after with the Howard's products on the maple finish. No steel wool, I wanted to preserve the remaining factory crustiness, just recondition and smooth the color, although it darkened a bit. Think Charlie Watts.

Already sold.
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Toast Tee

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Only refinishing a whole set. Not matching an existing set. Might consult a furniture refinisher and see what advice they can offer, especially with a vintage finish.
That's the idea I've had. I can't put a new throw off on a snare, so I know I'm out of my league here.
That's a really nice job Level!
I need a Bubinga bass drum hoop done, and I'm having more luck with furniture guys, than music stores.
I posted a thread, but no response. I'm not trying to hijack, but I'm picking up a Bubinga kit tomorrow.
Could someone tell me if this can be done to match the finish?
Thanks
 

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latzanimal

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That's the idea I've had. I can't put a new throw off on a snare, so I know I'm out of my league here.
That's a really nice job Level!
I need a Bubinga bass drum hoop done, and I'm having more luck with furniture guys, than music stores.
I posted a thread, but no response. I'm not trying to hijack, but I'm picking up a Bubinga kit tomorrow.
Could someone tell me if this can be done to match the finish?
Thanks
I would color it in with furniture markers. Then apply a clear coat over the top....
 


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