Hardwood refinishing question

I am currently refinishing a hardwood front entry door; oak, I think.
I have just about completely removed the old poly and stain by sanding. However, in a few areas, the surface wood is just a tiny bit softer and more fibrous. I assume this is due to some moisture penetration under the old poly.
These areas are still pretty solid -- can't dent with a thumbnail. But I can see and feel a subtle difference when sanding them.
What can I do with these areas prior to painting with fresh (oil based) poly? I don't think sanding all of the slightly soft material away is going to be practical.
I have seen various "wood hardener" products in the big box stores but have never used them. Are they appropriate here and do they work? Some other treatment?
FWIW, this door is fairly well sheltered under a deep entry porch.
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Malcolm Hoar wrote:

Seems to me you're on the right track using a hardener treatment. One that comes to mind is MInWax, part of their restoraation package with the Bondo type filler. However, it is a resin + solvent system, and the resin may or may not be hard enough for your purpose. Given that situation, I would likely use a well thinned out oil based polyurethane for maximum penetration and resand after thorough cure. Take advantage of the spectrum of colored poly's to get the final finish you want. Weathered oak may not repond very well to the usual stains and fillers. Good luck.
Joe
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On Oct 22, 6:38 pm, snipped-for-privacy@malch.com (Malcolm Hoar) wrote:

I would sand until good wood, to see what the door will look like and how damaged wood affects it wipe on paint thinner liberaly on the whole door to see your work, often sanding must start with 50g then 80g then 120 and 200. Be sure to use a product specified Marine, boat shops or Ben Moore, P&L are top products. The quality is in the prep- sanding.
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