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Lane Cedar Chest Refinishing and Veneer Repair




Gah..... She's a sight for sore eyes, I know.  Not many people would dare take on such a project. I mean, it's not as if Lane Cedar Chests are hard to come by.  But as so often is the case, sentimental value played a role in this job,  so I decided to restore it for my client.  Now, when it came into the shop, it was covered in wood grain contact paper. I had no idea of the condition until I stripped the paper off.  Below, I used chemical stripper to remove the paper, just as I do when removing finish.



The stripper softened the contact paper nicely, and I was able to peel it right off. A second coat removed the painted finish that was under the contact paper. For more "How To" on stripping, browse around the Learning Center. You will find plenty of information to assist you.



After a couple hours worth of work, the chest was stripped clean.



Overall, it was a nice looking Walnut Cedar chest. These chests always finish up very nice, but most I come across share a common problem....veneer issues.  More times than not, when I get this style Lane chest in it will require some veneer work, but this one ranks up there with one of the worse I've worked on. Any worse than this and It wouldn't be worth the effort to restore.


In this tutorial, the veneer repair is what we will focus on.  This is a universal problem on any type of veneered furniture, as well as a universal method of repair.  As you can see, the problem is severe! It's all around the base as well, not just isolated to one area.


So how do you fix something like this without all types of mad skills and equipment?  Well,  some skills and some tools will be required....obviously. However, no skills we don't all possess and the tools won't cost $50 and you'll be able to use them again on another project, further reducing the cost.



In this Video, Rod shows us how to deal with the loose veneer and how to prep the repairs for grain painting.

Below, we've now sanded the entire chest with the orbital sander and 150 grit paper.  I followed that up with 220 grit and then applied a light stain and sealer coat.


Below, you can see I've applied a couple coats of finish, and I'm now ready to grain paint the damaged areas on the bottom molding.  I always get at least half way through the finishing process before I do any touch up and grain painting.  This way I won't sand off any of my touch up paint when I finish sand between coats. 



Enjoy this Video: Rod takes you step by step through the touch up and grain painting process and explains what products he uses. This process makes the difference between an OK job and a stunning job! 



Below, The damaged area that Rod showed you how to repair and grain paint in the above videos.  Who would ever know?


And Finally, a few shots of the completed Cedar chest as it gets ready to go back to it's owner.  Pretty great transformation and nothing that most people couldn't do themselves...with a little guidance from The Refinishing Studio, of coarse :-)


Don't forget that all older Lane Cedar Chests have recalled locks!!  See our Feature Tutorial on Replacing a Lane Cedar Chest lock for all the how to of getting and installing your new lock...it could save a child's life!


Happy Finishing


Your Hosts,

Rod & Jen Keyser

Owners of The Restoration Studio LLC


“Our goal at The Furniture Refinishing Studio Learning Center is to help empower you to step beyond the realm of ordinary, and assist you so that your furniture restoration projects become extraordinary. We are passionate about furniture,and we understand the importance it plays in everyday life.”

Rod & Jen Keyser The Restoration Studio LLC