Repairing Black Ash veneer - diyAudio
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Old 19th February 2008, 03:14 AM   #1
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Unhappy Repairing Black Ash veneer

I'm repairing some Proac speakers with their basic 'Black Ash' finish.

The veneer had lots of scratches so I tried using scratch repair wax (crayons) and using a black wax polish but they didn't really help much.

So I just wet sanded with 600 grit back to the white wood under the finish and succeeded in getting all the scratches out. After allowing time for the wood to dry I dry sanded with 1000 grit and then rubbed in Nitrostain black wood dye. I've put on a few coats but it's no where near as black and opaque a finish as the original. Some areas of the wood haven't taken the stain so well and generally it looks dark brown rather than black. Basically it's been a failure!.

I can tell the original finish was sprayed on because of the overspray on the inside of the cabinet, but does anyone have any idea what they sprayed on? It has to be a completely opaque black with a medium glossy finish, but also the coating needs to be thin so it doesn't obscure the texture of the woods grain.

I'm thinking maybe they stained black and then put on a coat of thinned down very black varnish. I'd really like to get the panel I sanded looking like the rest of the speaker again although if I can reproduce the finish I'll probably the

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Old 19th February 2008, 04:22 AM   #2
el`Ol is offline el`Ol  Germany
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I would try wood wax with graphite powder as pigment, but I am not sure this will overlay the brown. The only pigment that is REALLY black is active coal (artists call it bone black). This will definitely overlay the brown, but without the glossy look.
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Old 19th February 2008, 04:27 AM   #3
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Stop crying. Post a picture of the screwed up area.
Chances are, on the factory, the speakers are sprayed with pigmented lacquer (nitrocellulose or pre cut nitro)and not stained at all. You could get same thing in a spray can and reproduce the finish. Stain is too translucent and will never give you that opacity black color.
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Old 19th February 2008, 04:28 AM   #4
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Default Re: Repairing Black Ash veneer

Quote:
Originally posted by BarakaBloke


I'm thinking maybe they stained black and then put on a coat of thinned down very black varnish. I'd really like to get the panel I sanded looking like the rest of the speaker again although if I can reproduce the finish I'll probably the

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Hi,
First, you sanded too fine. When you sand raw wood (or veneer) with very fine sandpaper, it "burnishes" the wood, making it harder to stain. 120 - 220 grit with the grain would have been good for this finish.
For stain, use thinned alkyd based paint. Yes, I said paint, not stain. You thin this with mineral spirits (Varsol). You can paint this on and let it dry. DO NOT wipe it off. It can be sprayed, and this would give the best results, but if you're careful it can be done very well with a good quality brush.
More coats will make it darker until you have the right colour. You can then clear coat this with satin polyurethane.
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Old 19th February 2008, 04:43 AM   #5
poobah is offline poobah  United States
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MJL is DEAD ON the money here.

Many ash finishes are done with "paints" that fill the pores rather than "stains".

I have done striking finishes by: sanding the wood smooth (no more than 220 -320) and PAINTING the wood black, then sanding to re-expose the pores while leaving the pores blackened.



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Old 19th February 2008, 05:15 AM   #6
el`Ol is offline el`Ol  Germany
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Maybe far too specific here, but I just googled out that iron oxide black is either brownisch (your stain) or blueish (stain common in Germany).
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Old 19th February 2008, 06:08 PM   #7
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Thanks folks. Hopefully these pictures will convey what I was trying to
describe.

These are shots of good areas of the original finish which I want recreate on
the face I sanded.

It's hard to photograph black but I think it gives the idea.

How can I recreate this finish on the face I sanded?
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File Type: jpg black ash small.jpg (84.1 KB, 476 views)
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Old 19th February 2008, 06:16 PM   #8
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Here's a closer picture
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File Type: jpg black ash (close) small.jpg (76.6 KB, 437 views)
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Old 19th February 2008, 06:31 PM   #9
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I'm inclined to agree with R-Carpenter, likely the finish was simply painted on; that is it was 'paint' not stain.

It's difficult to experiment on the actual cabinet itself. I would be better if you had a spare piece of wood. I think the first thing you need to determine is the degree of flatness of the finish; flat, satin, semi-gloss, or gloss. I'm thinking likely satin or semi-gloss. Then see if you can duplicate that.

It is possible to paint with flat black, then coat with clear satin or semi-gloss. Or any other combination to achieve the desire result, like paint it with gloss black then finish it with satin clear.

At any rate, it's a complex process trying to match an existing finish. It would be better to simply put a new finish on the whole thing. Lightly sand, choose your undercoat and spray, then choose your finish coat and spray.

Are you familiar with Candy paints. They are the clear colored paints they put over metal-flake on custom motorcylces. You could spray an undercoat of flat or satin black, then sand it lightly, and coat it with a clear gloss or satin black 'Candy'. That would give the appearance of a very deep finish.

Not worth much. Just a few thoughts.

steve/bluewizard
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Old 20th February 2008, 01:11 AM   #10
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Think of it this way. 99% of commercial speakers are sprayed in the spray booth. 99% of them use pre catalyzed or regular nitrocellulose lacquer. From the picture, it’s obvious that these cabinets are spray-painted. So, just do the same thing.
Where to find it:
Look in the phone book at “furniture restoration supplies”, “finishing supplies” Call them and ask them if they carry Satin Black nitrocellulose in the form of spray can. In US, it’s about $7 a can.
How to spray:
Nitro stinks; so either do it outdoors or with the fan in the window. It’s also flammable, so no smoking.
Lay your speaker on the side and give it a couple of thin crosshatch coats. If you get a hang of it, you could give a entire cabinet a quick overall. One can should be more then enough.
If you concern about abuse, get a can of clear satin lacquer also and topcoat with it.
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