Ten years ago I made and installed red oak interior window sills. Minwax
stain and clear lacquer finish. Now in need of new finish due to sun damage.
With light sanding would poly be compatable over lacquer?
Others will have their own ideas, but this is mine when dealing with a
damaged finish. I would sand all I could off without damaging the
stain color to keep the deteriorated finish from 1) contaminating my
new finish, and 2) keep my new finish from bonding correctly.
After sanding and cleaning really well, I would hit it with a quick
coat of shellac based sanding sealer or 2# cut of dewaxed shellac.
Sand lightly, and apply new finish. That is if you are going to seal
But I would not use poly if I thought I might be refinishing these
again in the future. You will have a mess with the crumbly or flaking
poly, and not much will make it look really nice again. If you got 10
years wear out of a lacquer that is exposed to lots of UV, you did
really well. I would go right back with that finish.
A bonus would be that if you put on lacquer the first time, you could
sand, wipe down with lacquer thinner, and reapply your lacquer finish
and skip the sealer/shellac.
When you want to recoat in a few years (don't wait until the finished
is toast), scuff sand, clean with lacquer thinner and put some more of
the same finish on it.
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