Painting furniture

Have some old pine stuff in our spare bedroom I was thinking about painting.
Does anyone have any recommendations for the best type of primer, paint, and protective coating? Ideally I want to avoid oil based paints due to the mess, smell and drying time. Not looking for any fancy effects like distressing - just a single colour.
It looks like the current finish is a microporous wood stain (i.e. not waxed or anything).
TIA, Midge.
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See if you can find the microporous wood stains under the name of Hicksons Decor and made by Hickson and Welch of Castleford. Prepare the wood well and put five or six coats of stain on very thinly. It only takes a few hours to dry and gives a beautiful finish.
Something over 20 years ago I bought a secondhand pair of Spendor BC1 monitor loudspeakers ex BBC. They were the usual chipboard but with proper wood laminate on the top and finished with a lacquer. They were a bit bruised. I removed the speaker panel (it was screwed in) and used an orbital sander to remove the lacquer using finer and finer paper to get a fine smooth finish. I wiped them over with turps to remove the dust and rubbed them over with fine wire wool several times until they were both smooth and clean. I then put on five coats of Decor over a week, rubbing down lightly between each and they came up beautifully - which they still look to this day. If only I had remembered to stain the underside of one of them!
Otherwise look at products by HG (Dutch?) or Lasutect (Danish?) which are also very good.
--
Woody

harrogate three at ntlworld dot com
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Thanks woody - I'll take a look around.
Midge

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