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Finishing a Piece of High Quality Oak Furniture

My customers often tell me that they are very impressed with the exceptional finish that they receive on the solid oak furniture that I make for them at The Oak Furniture Shop. Whether it is a Coffee Table, End Table, Sofa Table, or TV Stand, each piece is smooth as glass. How do I do this?

First, a little history, I will keep it short. In 1981 I ventured out on my own to build my business making solid oak glass top coffee tables and end tables. I sold directly to furniture stores, furniture direct stores, or any furniture warehouse that purchased wholesale furniture. My designs were grouped in furniture sets to enhance any style or setting of living room furniture.

Then, for the next twenty five years, I listened to my customers, learned from them, and continued to experiment to reach perfection. You can have a well-made Oak Table or Oak TV Console, but if it does not have a beautiful finish it will not sell. If you have a moderate quality TV Cabinet or Solid Oak Table with a beautiful finish, it will sell. You are making progress.

However, if you have an exceptional quality Solid Oak TV Stand or Coffee Table with an exceptional finish, you will have a product that will sell and your customers will be proud to display it in their homes!

How the Oak Furniture Shop does it

First, you must properly sand the bare wood. Remove all mill marks, imperfections, sharp corners, and any rough edge. Every piece goes through my wide belt sander, then is hand polished with a DA Sander and inspected.

Second, very important, I finish all my furniture in pieces, before assembly. So much easier to control variations, runs and over sprays.

Third, I use an oil based wiping stain. I apply it with a 2 1/2 gallon Binks Pot and Spray Gun, rub it in against the grain, and wipe it off with the grain. Many large manufacturers use a tint stain. They just spray it on and let it dry. My way is much more time consuming and much more messy, but the results are worth it. It really brings out the grain and the beauty of the wood.

Then I seal and topcoat with a quality post catalyzed varnish. I use ML Campbell Dura Var, exceptional product in every way. Quick point, a post catalyzed varnish is mixed with a catalyst just before applying. A pre-catalyst varnish has the catalyst mixed at the factory. The post catalyzed varnish always gives you a harder finish.

To spray my topcoat I use a Kremlin air assist spraying system. It was quite an investment for me, however this is the premier spraying system in the furniture industry.

So, whether you buy a small Oak Nightstand to sit next to your bed or a 60″ Queen Anne TV Cabinet to display in your Living room, my goal is to give you a product that you will be proud to show and pass down to future generations.