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Thread: How to Clean Antique Wood

  1. #1

    Default How to Clean Antique Wood

    I received the wooden part of a Silas Hoadley longcase clock. It is the case part of the clock without the actual clock. The wood appears to be mahogany, but is covered in decades of dirt and grime from being stored in an attic. Any suggestions on how I could clean it up to see if it is worth trying to bring it back to life?

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
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    15,125

    Default Re: How to Clean Antique Wood

    I would start with Mineral Spirits and a clean white cotton rag. Do that first, Mineral spirits will not remove the original finish or topcoat and remove most the dirt and oils and old waxes. Next after that is Briwax and Steel wool, but that is smelly, dirty, nasty work.
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty-six years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum.

  3. #3

    Default Re: How to Clean Antique Wood

    Thank you! I started with the mineral spirits and a clean cloth. Mercy, you weren't kidding about the mess. It is working though. Wood underneath the grime is absolutely beautiful. Found a local restoration group and am going to have them work on it since they know what they are doing.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
    Posts
    15,125

    Default Re: How to Clean Antique Wood

    # 0000 Steel Wool is your friend. You can do amazing things with steel wool on old, wood furniture. Many are afraid to use it, but its the best tool in your toolbox.
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty-six years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum.

  5. #5

    Default Re: How to Clean Antique Wood

    I was terrified that it would scratch the wood. Nope, it peels off the layers of filth...

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