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Advice on restoring wood to its natural colour/glory

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harjthandi

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Hello - We found an old trapdoor buried within a wall during a recent home renovation. I'm not sure what the wood type is, but the door was in pretty good condition but felt a little damp to the touch. One side was painted but much of this has faded/ peeled off. I dismantled the door and removed the metal hardware in order to give it a good sanding, but there are grey patches in the wood that I'm assuming is moisture that i cannot remove, and its difficult to sand any further.

I plan to turn the door into a coffee table by sanding down, finishing and adding some legs.

I'm assuming the wood has a very high moisture content after what potentially could have been decades in the wall. So any advice on removing the moisture, getting rid of the grey patches and treatment for the wood would be much appreciated.

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Thanks!
 

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MikeG.

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Was the door on the inside or outside of the wall? What did it lead to? What were the screws like which held it together (that will give a good idea of the age)?

It's probably wise to assume the moisture content is high, but it may well not be. I don't work with tropical hardwoods so I can't tell you what the species is, I'm afraid.
 

harjthandi

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MikeG.":qa5m038h said:
Was the door on the inside or outside of the wall? What did it lead to? What were the screws like which held it together (that will give a good idea of the age)?

It's probably wise to assume the moisture content is high, but it may well not be. I don't work with tropical hardwoods so I can't tell you what the species is, I'm afraid.
Hi - so the door we found was on the inside of an exterior wall. It had been bricked over on the wall outside so we only discovered it when removing the plaster inside. The room it was in used a shop so it was a form of access door from the outside to the cellar in the room floor! In terms of the screws, they were around 5x50mm wood screws - were in pretty good condition to be fair with some rust on the screw heads. The metal hardware was totally rusted.
 

MikeG.

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I'd say that dates your door to maybe the last 20 years of last century, perhaps. 1980 to 2000, plus or minus.....
 

Doug71

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Only a guess as it's hard to tell from the photos but the wood could be Keruing.

I mainly say that based on the half lap details of the boards. Keruing is often sold in this profile, it is used for trailer and truck bases, a kind of low quality but tough hardwood.

You would not normally use it for joinery but someone might have had a few lengths kicking about and thought they would make a door out of it.
 

AndyT

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Probably the simplest option to finish the table and bring some warm colour back is to oil it.
Boiled Linseed Oil is cheap and easy. (Raw linseed oil is similar but takes much longer to dry.)

Tip some oil on a rag, wipe it over the wood. After about an hour, wipe off any excess oil.
Repeat daily until satisfied.

It's only moderately durable but very easy to revive with another coat with no need for sanding or scraping.
 

harjthandi

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Doug71":91k5eom1 said:
Only a guess as it's hard to tell from the photos but the wood could be Keruing.

I mainly say that based on the half lap details of the boards. Keruing is often sold in this profile, it is used for trailer and truck bases, a kind of low quality but tough hardwood.

You would not normally use it for joinery but someone might have had a few lengths kicking about and thought they would make a door out of it.
OK, thank you for the suggestion - certainly looks like it could be Keruing judging by a google search.
 

harjthandi

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AndyT":14knivpr said:
Probably the simplest option to finish the table and bring some warm colour back is to oil it.
Boiled Linseed Oil is cheap and easy. (Raw linseed oil is similar but takes much longer to dry.)

Tip some oil on a rag, wipe it over the wood. After about an hour, wipe off any excess oil.
Repeat daily until satisfied.

It's only moderately durable but very easy to revive with another coat with no need for sanding or scraping.
BLO is what i have bought in order to finish this project. I like the warm feel and look it provides. my question is, what is the best way to remove the grey colour in the wood? It appears more on one side of the wood than the other and is quite deeply penetrated looking at the edges..
 

MikeG.

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It's a stain in the wood. The only way to get rid of it is to remove the wood that holds it, so plane off the surface until it's gone.
 

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