How to Darken Oak Furnishings with Ammonia Fuming

In this video I reveal a historical method for darkening white oak furnishings with industrial strength Ammonia, inside a makeshift plastic fuming tent, and I do it on a pair of Shaker design quartersawn white oak end tables. My latest video & & article showed how these end tables fit together (more overpowering as the fuming procedure advances, so know when you open the tent flap.So where do you find industrial strength Ammonia? Industrial ammonia(25%-28 %Ammonium Hydroxide)is a bit hard to find in your area these days. Back in the mid 90’s when I took architecture classes in high school (down the hall from my woodworking class), ammonia was quite common. The school saved ammonia since we had a blueprint maker for printing our blueprint strategies. Local designers and engineers likewise utilized ammonia. So a lot more business provided it. Now days, with the introduction of computer system printers, there is less need for ammonia and less local suppliers. I eventually located a laboratory supply business that brought it in Richmond, Virginia( about an hour drive from me … here it is for anyone living in Virginia). And after that, after buying it from Richmond I discovered that you can purchase it on Amazon ( here)for about what I paid, consisting of shipping. Oh well.Step 3: Inspect the Furniture Occasionally Some people utilize test sticks, or little scraps of wood from the very same lumber that they’re fuming(tucked just inside the tent)to gauge the progress oftheir furnishings in the fuming camping tent. I personally want to see the whole piece of furniture,so I open the camping tent flap extremely briefly every few hours. These end

tables were left in the fuming tent for a little over two days. Some people leave theirs in for shorter periods of time. Just go according to your choice. I do, however, do some sample test sticks prior to fuming the furnishings, to obtain an approximation of how long the fuming will take. However this is optional. If you can discover clear plastic sheeting, that’s an even better choice. I had nontransparent plastic sheeting in my garage, so that’s exactly what I used.The furniture pieces will have a dull gray appearance for the duration of the fuming, so do not leave them in until they look sensational … due to the fact that they won’t look stunning up until you use your surface. Just utilize your judgement.Step 4: Remove Your Furnishings from the Fuming Tent When you feel that your fuming process has reached it’s desired results, open the plastic tent flap door, carefully remove the ammonia. Dilute it actually well and dispose of it … or just pour it into the toilet. Ammonia is a cleaner, so just scrub your toilet with it. And urine contains ammonia, so there’s no issue here. Plus, this ammonia has lost much of it’s strength after fuming. Just take care to never blend

ammonia with bleach. The mix will produce a lethal gas!! After you’ve safely gotten rid of the ammonia, simply leave the tent flap open for a couple hours, and let the furnishings piece” gas off”. Take the furniture piece back to your workshop, and let it re-acclimate to the humidity level of your workshop for a couple days before applying a surface. Here’s a picture of completion tables before the fuming so that you can contrast it with the fumed tables above.Step 5: Use a Finish The most rewarding minute comes whenyou use the first coat of surface on the freshly fumed oak

furnishings. You can use essentially any surface over the top of ammonia fumed furniture. Two of my favorite methods are blow. OIL/ SHELLAC/ WAX SURFACE INSTRUCTIONS: For furniture pieces that won’t get much abuse, I really like using boiled linseed oil with dewaxed shellac,

and a wax top coat. Apply the boiled linseed oil freely till the wood won’t absorb anymore, then wipe the oil off with a clean cotton cloth after letting it sit for 10-15 minutes. Then apply several coats of thinned dewaxed shellac with a cotton fabric. If the shellac isn’t primarily dry within 30 seconds(after blowing on it), then thin it with more denatured alcohol. This will prevent running and will permit a nice build up of the shellac

. This is why it’s a smart idea to utilize a test board

that you’ve fumed with your furniture. Gently sand after the very first coat of shellac, then apply a couple more coats of shellac. You truly only have to await less than a minute in between coats of shellac, if it’s been properly thinned. After the last shellac coat has actually dried for at least an hour, you can then use a paste wax with 0000 steel wool. Buff it out with a clean fabric within 10 minutes or less. A top coat can be used over the shellac, prior to the wax, as long as you use dewaxed shellac, and not typical shellac. A protective top coat won’t adhere to waxy shellac very well. Below is an excellent protective surface.< img src = alt width =102 height = 200 data-lazy-type =image data-lazy-sizes= "(max-width: 102px )100vw, 102px" > WIPING VARNISH SURFACE RECIPE & INSTRUCTIONS: This is a simple, charming, and protective wood surface dish that is based on a recipe that my pal Will Myers shared with me. I like it because it draws out the figure and offers depth with some oil, however uses security that a table needs, without getting a plastic look. It’s likewise quite easy.Use a lint-free fabric, or old tee shirt scraps to wipe on a first coat. Wait 10-15 minutes, then rub out the

excess with a clean cloth. Let the & first coat dry for three days.Repeat the above steps two more times.After the last (3rd)coat has dried for 3 days, gently scuff the surface again, and buff with a good furniture wax. Waiting a week prior to applying a wax surface is even much better so that the surface gets a nice long time to solidify. Make sure to follow the can’s guidelines since leaving wax on too long prior to buffing it out can trigger you issues. I believe 10 minutes is a normal max wait time for buffing.Please leave your remarks or concerns listed below!