Theater chairs

I bought five connected fold down theater chairs. Looks like 50's. They are made of laminated wood, similar to plywood, and are curved. The type like they used to make curved barstools and chairs and desks out of. They are in decent shape, but are separating a little here and there. What would I use to get them back to original. I would imagine glue inserted in the cracks and held together with a clamp of wood pieces band saw cut to fit the contour. Which type of glue:
And there is black paint, covering up a nice pine color underneath. It looks like latex, as it is coming off in flat flakes about an inch square. What would be the best way of getting off the wood without introducing much water, or something that may cause it to delaminate or cause further damage. Thanks.
Steve
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Yellow giue works, so does epoxy. I'd use yellow, simpler.
No need (probably) to make clamping cauls, a bunch of spring clamps should work fine. If you don't have a bunch they are easy to make by cutting 3/4"-1" rings off a piece of 2" PVC pipe, then cut a slot actoss each ring do you can pull them apart. The diameter of the PVC pipe used depends upon the thickness of what you want to clamp.

Sand paper springs to mind :)
I kinda doubt that it is latex if from the 50s...they still had real paint then. Might be lacquer too in which case, lacquer thinner would save much sanding.
--

dadiOH
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On Saturday, July 26, 2014 3:57:51 PM UTC-5, dadiOH wrote:

Making spring clamps: I've made foot long "clothes pins". 3/4" square stock for the legs, a pivot block between 2, with strips of cut (tire) inner tube wrapped around the legs.
I like the PVC idea. I'll have to try that.
Sonny
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On Saturday, July 26, 2014 10:22:32 AM UTC-5, SteveB wrote:



My suggestions. Remember what you paid for them. This is classic refinish ing 101.
Take the whole set apart after you label/number each piece. Remove all har dware. Buy a good finish stripper and strip the pieces once at a time. I use Kleen Strip in the orange can (K5?). Wash with cheap lacquer thinner, not soap and water, water, or anything else. Lacquer thinner. Inspect all wood surfaces for damage, staining, etc., to decide if you want to clear c oat, stain, paint, etc. Determination of your coating will determine how m uch you finish sand before coating application.
Repair wood as needed. Cut cauls to conform to shapes as needed. Use fille r pieces of wood if pieces of edge laminate are missing. For this type of repair I use 30 minute epoxy I buy at Hobby Lobby. I use epoxy for its hol ding power, but also for its ability to harden. If you use a wood glue and the surfaces aren't clean, there may be adhesion problems. If you fill in a bit with epoxy, it won't shrink later, and if needed, the epoxy will hard en enough to successfully fill voids. If any of it is exposed, then the su rface of the glue should be treated or roughed up (as with any other glue) before finishing. When you are repairing, fill any worn screw holes with a soft wood plug and >>yellow<< glue to make sure new screws will grab. Thi s needs to be done now, not later so you can sand down the plugs as needed before applying your finish.
Apply your desired finish to the wood/laminate.
Use the same method for the metal hardware, but remove all rust and careful ly clean any pivot areas that probably received lubricants over the years t o prevent squeaking. Lubricants can dry up, their solvents leave and they can turn to a gummy material that won't hold finish.
Prime the metal before you paint. All of it, not just the bare metal.
Buy new screws, bolts, nuts, and whatever else you need to reassemble. The se aren't priceless antiques so don't worry about authenticity. Take your mechanical fasteners with you and match them up on the hardware store's rac k.
Put it all back together.
As you can see, it is a process. If you skip steps, you will pay for it la ter. Be patient, dont' get in a hurry and plan your work.
Robert
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wrote:

But the paint may not have been put on in the '50s
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On 7/26/2014 2:06 PM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Thanks for the suggestions, guys. I paid $60 for them, and have two people interested at $350. I want them to look nice, so will take my time. Five seats will be a bit of a job, but I think they will look very nice refinished with a light wood stain and clear topcoats. I have a small Sears sandblaster that seems to work fine on such jobs, and I think it will save me a lot of work, and give me a good base to prime. I hope my daughter in law doesn't see them, as she has a home theater room. She thinks if I paid $60 for them, I ought to throw in the work and materials for $25 tops. She says it's so easy, a woman could do it.
Steve
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On Sunday, July 27, 2014 9:30:37 AM UTC-5, SteveB wrote:

Unfinished and you get an offer as that, i.e., unseen finished condition. What kind of offer will you get, once they are restored?
In good restored shape, I'd think they might be worth double that, but the market dictates the value. Do the work, then advertise them and see what offers you get, what better offers you may get. But sometimes I do restor ations just for fun and reimbursement fees, not for profit, so much.
I'd like to see the refinished results, also.
Sonny
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On 7/26/2014 2:06 PM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Buy a good finish stripper and strip the pieces once at a time. I use
Kleen Strip in the orange can (K5?). Wash with cheap lacquer thinner,
not soap and water, water, or anything else. Lacquer thinner. Inspect all
wood surfaces for damage, staining, etc., to decide if you want to clear
coat, stain, paint, etc. Determination of your coating will determine how
much you finish sand before coating application.

filler pieces of wood if pieces of edge laminate are missing. For this
type of repair I use 30 minute epoxy I buy at Hobby Lobby. I use epoxy
for its holding power, but also for its ability to harden. If you use a
wood glue and the surfaces aren't clean, there may be adhesion problems.
If you fill in a bit with epoxy, it won't shrink later, and if needed,
the epoxy will harden enough to successfully fill voids. If any of it
is exposed, then the surface of the glue should be treated or roughed up
(as with any other glue) before finishing. When you are repairing, fill
any worn screw holes with a soft wood plug and >>yellow<< glue to make
sure new screws will grab. This needs to be done now, not later so you
can sand down the plugs as needed before applying your finish.

clean any pivot areas that probably received lubricants over the years to
prevent squeaking. Lubricants can dry up, their solvents leave and they
can turn to a gummy material that won't hold finish.

These aren't priceless antiques so don't worry about authenticity. Take
your mechanical fasteners with you and match them up on the hardware
store's rack.

Thanks for the excellent info. What kind of clearcoat? I have used McClauskey's (?) before. Is that overkill, or would a generic do as well? Suggestions? Is there any chance of stain/varnish reacting with clear coat and bubbling? I had a car do that once.
Thanks again.
Steve
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On Monday, July 28, 2014 6:11:53 PM UTC-5, SteveB wrote:


Hope it helps, Steve.
My suggestion will make many here gasp with dispair... I would use Minwax clear, oil based polyurethane. While I don't have the results, articles, t ests, documents or other cites for you, I can tell you it always winds up i n the top 10% in blind testing by professionals. And those findings always result in indignant screaming, teeth gnashing, gasps of disbelief, and out right denial.
Other finishes have to be better... after all, they cost more so that must mean better, right? Plain old Minwax and Defthane work well for me. Minwa x takes the edge though as it dries harder, and makes a more abrasion resis tant top coat. Believe me, I have tried just about everything (practical) under the Sun if it will make me money, save me time and give a good finish . And being a professional, most companies will send me their product to t ry as a sample.
I have my favorite, but it is expensive and must be sprayed. So with that in mind, I wouldn't have any problem at all with Minwax. I have put it on desk tops, and just left a long time client's house today that has a dining room table I finished with Minwax. Still looks perfect; it is a dining ro om table, a get together table, a craft table, cookie making table when the kids are around, etc. In a rake light, the table finish is still excellen t and there are very few minor scratches. I would give that top finish a h earty thumbs up as it is about 5-6 years old now and actually looks new. I t is three coats of Minwax "satin" over hard maple butcher block. The tabl e top was sanded naked (to 220gr to remove the old finish completely), wash ed with lacquer thinner, and the material applied with a pad.
NO SANDING BETWEEN COATS. NONE. Just sayin'...
If your surface is clean you will have no bubbling simply because you appli ed your finish over stain. Remember to stir your coating, no shaking allow ed. If you have any problems, it will be because you overwork the applicat ion of the urethane and pick up the stain with your applicator. Even if yo u don't see it, you can easily mottle the color and shadings by repeatedly going over a surface to "smooth out" the applicator marks.
Since I spray everything possible, I don't worry about that. But if you ar e hand applying and find the stain is picking up (check for ANY color on yo ur applicator) then stop, spray dewaxed shellac on the surface, then carry on with your top coat in a couple of hours. The bottom of one of those sea ts would be my test bed for not only color, but proper application techniqu e and method.
Robert
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On 7/29/2014 9:36 AM, Sonny wrote:

What kind of offer will you get, once they are restored?

but the market dictates the value. Do the work, then advertise
them and see what offers you get, what better offers you may get.
But sometimes I do restorations just for fun and reimbursement fees,
not for profit, so much.

Good advice. Thanks. People know I scrounge, so ask me to watch out for things they want, and their price ranges. Of course, sometimes, it comes out that the value is in excess of their projection, but I still give them first right of refusal. Sometimes, it takes a long while, sometimes I never find what they want. But it sure makes it easier buying something when you know you have interested buyers, rather than just taking a chance on an item.
Looking at these, and all the stripping, and work, I agree that they might come in at more than $350. I was thinking of just painting over, but there is such nice wood underneath, and it's pretty solid. I think it would look great with the black off there, a light stain, and a clearcoat.
Steve
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On Tuesday, July 29, 2014 3:09:51 PM UTC-5, SteveB wrote:

It isn't an item with a particularly markup:
http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_sacat=0&_nkw=vintage+theater+seats&_frs=1
among other examples...
Robert
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On 7/29/2014 5:38 PM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

I have historically done much better than ebay prices on Craigslist on items where shipping becomes an issue. I advertise in Las Vegas, and there are people there who have quite a bit of disposable income. We will see.
Steve
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On Tuesday, July 29, 2014 9:43:01 PM UTC-5, SteveB wrote:

Good luck!
Hope you make a mint. There is a lot of tedious work ahead. You sure deserve more than your asking price.
Robert
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On 7/29/2014 8:17 PM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

This is new for me. I haven't really redone any furniture before, but have some pieces to be done. I'm doing it more for the experience than anything else. I can see that refinishing furniture is labor and cost intensive, takes a lot of time, takes a lot of space, and is messy. I think this will be a good starter project. Winter is coming, and it will be a good indoor project to be taken at a steady pace. Luckily, there is not a lot of reconstruction or repair to be done. I'll try the sandblaster and see if I can improve on cleaning metal over the paint remover process, or compare them. I am building up my stock of wood tools, organizing my bench, consolidating and repairing power tools, and just learning some basic things. I do metal work primarily, and would like to do some combination work, like work with hand made hand hammered metal accents. It's all fun, but a guy would have a hard time making a living at it.
Steve
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On 7/30/2014 10:27 AM, SteveB wrote:

Had limited experience doing that (providing the woodworking to go with someone else's metalworking), but what little I've done was satisfying, and paid surprisingly well.
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RE: Subject
IMHO, the project is far too labor intensive to ever recover your labor costs, much less material costs, unless you are willing to work for $3-$4/hr.
As far as sand blasting is concerned, you ONLY do it outside in the drive way.
Might try to reclaim sand for a 2nd pass if you can.
Even garnet is an expensive blasting material and you want to seal the metal as soon as it is blasted clean.
This project could become a bottomless pit in a hurry.
Just my opinion.
Had a guy down the street who did glass bead blasting.
Made him a deal.
If he didn't build boats, I wouldn't blast clean things.
Lew
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