Removing water-based varnish / woodstain

6 Jun 2004
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United Kingdom
I hope no-one has the same problem as mine!

I decided to use a water-based woodstain / varnish on an internal pine panelled door but first used a SPIRIT-based woodfiller to make good some blemishes (knotholes, screwholes from a previous owner's attempt at panelling (vandal!!), etc.) The filler went in and rubbed down nicely and the colour match to the original wood was fine. But when I put on a water-based varnish / woodstain - DISASTER. All the areas which had been filled showed up as pale patches, not just the defect but also the area around it where I'd knifed-in the filler. The filler had proofed the wood against the stain!

Now I want to remove the varnish coat and start again but have found that the varnish does not react completely with paintstripper and goes to a sticky gunge which (if left) sticks back on to the wood. Yukkkk!

Does anyone have a good method for removing this type of varnish / woodstain??
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i have just stripped beams with varnish on and took it off with a heat gun and then sanded it down.

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