Refinishing bay window floor

About a year ago, a puddle of Windex spilled into one of the corners of my bay window. Before I noticed it, the polyurethane finish was damaged. Now that I'm getting around to restaining and finishing it, I'm running into two problems.
A picture of the corner is posted here - http://tinyurl.com/6mbgjg - and also at alt.binaries.test.
Time - 7/30/08, 2:46 pm Subject - Bay window floor Sender - Ray K
I used a varnish remover called Citristrip, which rinses with mineral spirits.
The first problem is the black stains that look like mildew or mold. I put a few drops of full strength ultra Clorox on them; it had no effect. I've tried sanding them away, no luck. If mold or mildew, they are deeper than I wish to sand. The same type of stains also are present, to a much less degree, at the opposite corner (which was never damaged by Windex or any other liquid).
(The window is located in Central New Jersey, subject to a yearly temperature range from about zero to 100F. There is insulation below the floor.)
The second problem is the raised wood grain, even though the stripper was rinsed with mineral spirits, not water. Even using a 150 sandpaper, I can't get rid of the raised grains. In fact, using sandpaper or even just just rubbing with a dry paper towel worsens them.
Any suggestions for dealing with these problems other than - horrors - paint? I don't have any experience with applying veneers.
Thanks,
Ray
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It looks like something in the wood is reacting with one or more of the liquids you have tried thus far. IF the wood or top veneer is oak it is likely that the tannic acid in the oak is reacting with something that has an iron compound in it. Could be as simple as well water that has a moderate amount of suspended iron in it, but basically tannic acid and iron equals the black like you have. It also looks like the black is worse where the liquids were the most concentrated and dried. The black residue will typically be below the overall wood surface where it collects in the pores of the wood, almost impossible to sand out.
Fortunately there IS a fairly effective solution that fixes this issue. You had the right idea trying to use a bleach to lighten it, however you were using the wrong type of bleach. What you need is Oxalic Acid solution. I am not sure where to get it anymore, not long ago you could buy Oxalic Acid crystals at most good hardware stores, failing that try google. It is also used to remove similar discoloring from leather and leather goods. The container should have appropriate mixing instructions. It usually doesn't significantly lighten surrounding wood which makes it almost ideal. It "bleaches" the iron compounds out as the water evaporates from the mix, should work in your situation given the picture you provided. Also, I mentioned OAK, but that is not to say there are many other wood species it will work on just as well. Good luck no matter what fix you try, regards, Joe.
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Oxalic acid might be obtained through your local college chemistry lab. Know a student? No mixing directions for use, though.
Sonny
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Sonny wrote:

Thanks to wikipedia, I found that I already had oxalic acid right under my kitchen sink, hiding out in a can of Barkeepers Friend, readily available at any supermarket next to the scouring powders.
I sprinkled some on the problem area, followed by several drops of water. Swished it around with a damp sponge, but it didn't help. Maybe I didn't leave it on long enough (because I don't like wetting wood for extended periods). Or perhaps the problem really isn't iron spots.
I'll also tried a non-chlorine bleach; no luck. On a long shot, also tried vinegar, a weak acid; again, no luck.
BTW, I do believe the wood is oak.
Thanks, Joe and Sonny, for the suggestions. Time to get out the paint or - even worse - the contact paper. Maybe a Formica laminate would work nicely; then I never have to worry about water spots from watering the plants I keep in the bay window.
Ray
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Figuring I had nothing to lose, I made a paste of oxalic acid and water to the consistency of toothpaste. I left it on the problems stains for about 10 minutes. Still no luck.
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Two methods:
(a) A nice contrasting latex paint that goes with the painted window molding.
(b) Gel Stain of your color choice.
Ray K wrote:

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wrote:

http://www.nextag.com/psa-oak-veneer/products-html
Regards, Tom.
Thos. J. Watson - Cabinetmaker http://home.comcast.net/~tjwatson1 / tjwatson1ATcomcastDOTnet
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Tom Watson wrote:

Thanks, Tom, for that lead. I need a piece 17" x 7 feet, which means a 2'x8' piece, which costs about $70. I wonder how much a carpenter would charge to paint it an simulate a wood grain as Ricod suggested.
Ray
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A carpenter wouldn't do faux finishing, and you probably don't want to know what a pro faux finisher would charge. Get a book out of the library on faux finishing. The stuff isn't rocket science and there's some forgiveness to the process as you can wipe away what doesn't work and try again.
R
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This is a multi-part message in MIME format. --------------070206090909060703020903 Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit
RicodJour wrote:

Good suggestion.
Since I use that window to hold houseplants, I'm surprised nobody suggested using artificial grass. ;-)
--------------070206090909060703020903 Content-Type: text/html; charset=ISO-8859-1 Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit
<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN"> <html> <head> <meta content="text/html;charset=ISO-8859-1" http-equiv="Content-Type"> </head> <body bgcolor="#ffffff" text="#000000"> RicodJour wrote: <blockquote cite="mid: snipped-for-privacy@m73g2000hsh.googlegroups.com" type="cite"> <pre wrap="">On Aug 1, 11:08&nbsp;pm, Ray K <a class="moz-txt-link-rfc2396E" href="mailto: snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net">&lt; snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net&gt;</a> wrote: </pre> <blockquote type="cite"> <pre wrap="">Tom Watson wrote: </pre> <blockquote type="cite"> <pre wrap="">On Wed, 30 Jul 2008 15:16:11 -0400, Ray K <a class="moz-txt-link-rfc2396E" href="mailto: snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net">&lt; snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net&gt;</a> wrote: </pre> </blockquote> <blockquote type="cite"> <blockquote type="cite"> <pre wrap="">Any suggestions for dealing with these problems other than - horrors - paint? I don't have any experience with applying veneers. </pre> </blockquote> </blockquote> <blockquote type="cite"> <pre wrap=""><a class="moz-txt-link-freetext" href="http://www.nextag.com/psa-oak-veneer/products-html ">http://www.nextag.com/psa-oak-veneer/products-html </a> </pre> </blockquote> <pre wrap="">Thanks, Tom, for that lead. I need a piece 17" x 7 feet, which means a 2'x8' piece, which costs about $70. I wonder how much a carpenter would charge to paint it an simulate a wood grain as Ricod suggested. </pre> </blockquote> <pre wrap=""><!----> A carpenter wouldn't do faux finishing, and you probably don't want to know what a pro faux finisher would charge. Get a book out of the library on faux finishing. The stuff isn't rocket science and there's some forgiveness to the process as you can wipe away what doesn't work and try again.
R </pre> </blockquote> Good suggestion.<br> <br> Since I use that window to hold houseplants, I'm surprised nobody suggested using artificial grass.<span class="moz-smiley-s3"><span> ;-) </span></span> </body> </html>
--------------070206090909060703020903--
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Only if the plants are artificial - otherwise use real grass. ;)
R
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It doesn't have to be a veneer. You could cut a piece of finish plywood or use Pergo-type flooring to cover the bottom. Make a template out of paper or you could use tick sticking for the layout. The only thing you'd need to address would be concealing the front edge of the the plywood.
Another alternative is to stain the wood so the offending stain becomes hardly noticeable. Or you could paint it, paint it and wood grain it, or use wood grain contact paper. =:O
R
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I had be thinking about Pergo. But it's about 7mm thick and presents the front edge challenge. On the plus side, the crank handles for the two side windows would still clear a 7mm higher floor.

I'd like the floor's stain to match the trim's stain, as it originally did. A darker stain would mask the present problem, but not match the trim.

I like the idea of wood graining it. Never did it before, but I could easily practice on scrap material. Thanks for that suggestion.
Ray
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