Restoring/altering the look of floorboards

19 Apr 2006
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United Kingdom
Thanks for looking! :)

In my hallways are some floorboards which were treated with some sort of pine finish about fifteen years ago, and finished with shiny Aqualac, or at least I believe so as I found some leftovers of it in the cellar when I moved in.

Obviously since then they've become quite worn overall, with completely bare wood in sparse, small patches. I had thought to just carpet over, but because of the narrow dimensions it would be quite expensive to do that, and so I would rather restore the floorboards, which aside from aesthetics are in very condition .

I have a belt sander and a palm sander, and my plan is to use them with a roll of P60 ally oxide I have lying around to achieve bare wood everywhere. Then some P120 to make it smoother. That's where it gets a bit hazy.

I want the floor to be a darker, richer colour than it was originally, and if possible shiny but not as much as the average wooden floor. Would applying some sort of shellac stain or French polish, followed by Aqualac be a suitable method? What about wax, which I know absolutely nothing about - should that be used in addition to stain, in which case before or after, or is it rather an alternative to staining?

The cheaper the better, but if it comes down to it I'll spend a bit more on superior products if they mean a noticeable improvement or make an important difference in durability.

Woodcare is one of my worst disciplines, so any advice greatly appreciated! :)
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A Golden Oak HardWaxOil colour might do the trick for you?

As for sanding: if the floor is really dirty and scratched, you might be better off starting with 40, then 80 and finishing with 120.
(In the event you select lacquer or varnish you'll have to end with grit 150 - not 120)

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