Wrong staining product used- how can it be corrected?

My kitchen cabinets (from a 1938 house) are solidly built hardwood. They are stained a very dark color but are a bit tired-looking where the stain is wearing off. So the painter who did the outside of my house said that he'd sand and stain the cabinets along with my very nice front door (round top with big hinges) which had a lot of scratches and a white film (mold?) was spreading.
Yesterday his helpers did the cabinets. They very lightly (barely) sanded them and wiped them down with a solvent. Then they painted them with Minwax Wood Finish ("penetrates, seals, stains") in dark walnut. To make a long story short, the cabinets are still tacky-wet after more than 24 hr. I told my mother, who knows about these things but is 200 mi away, and she said they used a penetrating product on a surface that was probably sealed and impervious, so it's just sitting on top and he has to rectify it.
I can call Minwax on Monday to get advice but when the painter comes tomorrow, I need to know what the options are so he doesn't experiment. Is there a way he can wipe off the tacky stuff and go back to the way the cabinets were before? Right now I just want to punt this project but I don't want the cabinets ruined.
The door is another problem. He has it HALF sanded (sanded spots and not-sanded spots) and said Friday that his strategy will be to use the same product as the kitchen which he thinks is dark enough so that he won't need to remove the hinges, numerals, etc. and sand the whole door. He anticipates that the stain will cover the sanded parts and the non-sanded parts uniformly. First, I doubt it. The finish that is remaining is very very dark, the underlying wood is reddish. Second, based what happened on the kitchen cabinets, it's not going to work as a stain over that old finish in the non-sanded spots. Third, this is an exterior door and I don't know if this product is an appropriate one. Fourth- this is my beautiful front door and I'm afraid he's going to ruin it!
Help! What to do about the cabinets? What to do about the door?*
Thanks for any advice to solve this fiasco.
Sue(tm) Lead me not into temptation... I can find it myself!
sue at interport dot net
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Curly Sue wrote:

I suppose you paid the guy in full, in advance, and don't have a written bid? Here is a link to "Minwax Wood Finish", which instructions say to apply only over bare wood or over itself. http://www.minwax.com/products/woodstain/woodfinish-direct.cfm
The stain should be wiped off after soaking in for a bit. Can probably get rid of tackiness by wiping with mineral spirits and allowing it to dry, then clear finish.
I would not finish a door with the hardware on it.
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Curly Sue wrote:

Your mother is right. _____________________

Maybe yes, maybe no. Wiping it off with paint thinner *may* remove it...unless it has started to polymerize...to set up. In that case, about the only thing is paint remover. ________________________

Where did you find this guy??? Penetrating oil (which is what he is using) simply won't work on a sealed surface. When you say your things are stained now do you mean that they are stained and then had a clear surface finish or that they are finished with something like a house stain. If the former, you can see every nuance of the wood. The latter sort of stain is more like a paint and comes in both opaque and something less so (term escapes me) that is still a paint like material but allows some wood detail to show through.
I sure can't tell you what to put on your door but I *can* tell you that it needs to be properly prepared for the material chosen. If it were my door, all hardware (including lockset and hinges) would be removed and it would be sanded entirely and uniformly to a degree suitable for the chosen finish.
-- dadiOH ________________________
dadiOH's dandies v3.0... ...a help file of info about MP3s, recording from LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that. Get it at http://www.gbronline.com/xico / _________________________________
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first, to long a line, Email me, and call me ,,,,...second hes no pro ,,,, and you are no pro , you both know . . 25 out of 100...... to long to discuss or type
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Minwax Wood Finish in Dark Walnut is actually a mixture of a dye and a pigment stain in a polyurethane binder. The word "Finish" is a misnomer if you think that a finish coat need not go on top of it. It is intended for use on unfinished wood. It is still sticky in your case because the stain is intended to be applied and then wiped off so that only a small amount remains on the wood. As you have learned, a small amount goes a long way on unfinished wood. It sounds like the painter "painted", your words, on a stain and let it sit there. It will never fully cure when applied that thick. You best bet is to start wiping with mineral spirits and remove what you can. Some of it is bound to have cured but hopefully, very little. Worse is that you may not be able to remove it equally from all parts of the cabinet. This is a classic example of why there are painters and wood/furniture finishers/refinishers. They are two different trades. I would NEVER let a painter refinish some cabinets anymore than I would like a furniture refinisher paint my walls. There are a few who are good at both but not many. The painter you have shouldn't be allowed to go near wood finishing products including hobbyist grades like Minwax.
Good Luck.
To email, remove both ngs.

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wrote:

I would have thought refinisher too, but when I stopped in a furniture store that advertised "refinishing" they told me they only do furniture. Plus, I had asked around regarding what type of contractor would be the proper one to refinish my front door and was told "painter."
You're right the mineral spirits take off most of the gunk but not all of it. Fortunately even with the unevenness, it doesn't look any worse than before he started, and actually somewhat better (after all, I did want them redone because they were tired and shabby looking). So if he can clean off the stickiness I will be grateful it wasn't worse and learn my lesson. But I'll do the front door myself next month as I have the vested interest to put in the time to sand it correctly, take the hardware off, etc.

Thanks :> This group has been a godsend for me over the past three years!
Sue(tm) Lead me not into temptation... I can find it myself!
sue at interport dot net
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Might try strong TSP solution as it sounds as though further work will be done. Almost suggested a stripper but backed down to TSP. Please let us know what happens.
On Sun, 13 Jul 2003 20:49:07 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@nyc.rr.com (Curly Sue) wrote:

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Bob Bowles wrote:

The product isn't water soluble - I think TSP would make a mess. New stain likely would clean off down to previous finis/bare wood with mineral spirits, and allow further sanding or clear finish when excess is removed.

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If you soup up TSP enough, it can be used to do some simple finish stripping but then you will have started to do just that on the cabinets, strip them. A reputable refinisher would strip them down and start over. Once everything that can be is removed by mineral spirits, and assuming it doesn't look less than adequate, a hobbyist could scuff sand and seal with shellac. Then a toner or glaze could be put down as needed to even it out and finally topcoat with something that will withstand a kitchen environment. In fact, the kitchen environment may be the problem. The cabinets may need to be fully stripped so a proper finish can be applied.

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wrote:

Sure will. He's coming back Wednesday.

Sue(tm) Lead me not into temptation... I can find it myself!
sue at interport dot net
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a
finishing
Not every refinisher will take on cabinets due to the large number of pieces but many do. In fact, some specialize in architectural finishing / refinishing / restoration / conservation. Not that it matters at this point but I have to wonder who suggested a painter for your front door. Virtually all refinishers will do front doors. They do everything from fiberglass to multi-thousand dollar mahogany doors.

Good for you! It's not nearly as hard as some people make it out to be. Do all the prep work properly, get good quality finishes, and I bet you will have something to be proud of.
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On Sun, 13 Jul 2003 01:18:14 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@nyc.rr.com (Curly Sue) wrote:

Anyone who calls themselves a painter better not be so lazy as to find a way around NOT removing hardware before applying a finish....
I'd seriously consider looking elsewhere for someone who knows what they're doing.
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