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paul cbc

Refinishing '71 Oiled Walnut Cornwalls

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I have done a search of the forum to glean refinishing tips for my '71 Corns.

Wanted to run my method by folks to make sure I'm on track and dont' goof6.gif

My Cornwalls are in pretty good condition considering the age. Some small (light) scratches, and water marks. One larger stain/mark on one speakers side where it might have been oreintated for listening at one point(vertical Horns).

Initially I had planned on just covering up the horns and woofer with plastic/visqueen but to save misfortune figuring I should open up the cabinets and pull the parts.

Light sanding to start-Grit suggestions? Palm sander or all by hand w/ block.

Figure a sanding from a coarse grit up to a finer grade 2 or 3 sandings.

Finishing with several coats of Boiled Linseed oil.

Please let me know what I am overlooking as I wish to do this right the first time. Thanks to Tom/Allan I have acquired a set of pie slice logos. And from the seller a roll of Cane grill cloth from the Klipsch Factory.

I'm no Bob Villa, but feel with folks help and being careful, I can do these speakers justice12.gif

paul

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Orbital sanders sand across the grain. I don't know what finish your speakers came with but I'd sand in the direction of the grain only, I had excellent luck with garnet sandpaper as recommended by Andy (HDBRbuilder) but some kinds of finishes will clog it right away.

What are thew serial numbers of your CW's? That might give a clue as to the original finish.

Tom

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Tom,

Thanks for the reply.

My Cornwalls say the following on their tags:

C-WO-15

2J163

C-WO-15

2J164

On the side of the cabinets, stamped into the wood are the letters:

U

S

A

I have a Makita pad sander that vibrates. Would this be sufficient, or should I seek out another sander?

Really want to do this right and appreciate your help!

paul

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There is a thread titled "Oiling my New Cornwalls" with the last post 4/18/03 in this forum, that may be of some interest to you if you haven't already found it. HDBR use to finish Klipsch speakers for a living.

I've done refinishing as a hobby for years. I'm working on a pair (1980) now, that are in great shape to start with, but need a few touch ups. I personally (as a weekender) would only do hand sanding with grain. Never with anything coaser (a word ?) than 400 grit. I have removed a light water stain with 1000 grit and minimal effort this weekend.

Mike

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I would never use an orbital sander on this veneer. It will go across the grain 1/2 the time. The veneer started out as GOOD veneer, but it is too thin for non-pros to use power equipment on IMHO.

The CWO is Cornwall Walnut Oiled, therefore the thread I mentioned above would definitely be if interest to you.

Mike

Non-Pro

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Mike,

Thanks for the reply and the link to the thread-very informative.

A couple questions came up:

Should I use the "woodsoap" mentioned, and if so before or after light sanding?

Also, would the acetone and tack cloth be used.

Sorry for the ignorance16.gif

& thanks

paul

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----------------

On 1/11/2004 11:17:31 PM paul cbc wrote:

Mike,

Thanks for the reply and the link to the thread-very informative.

A couple questions came up:

Should I use the "woodsoap" mentioned, and if so before or after light sanding?

Also, would the acetone and tack cloth be used.

Sorry for the ignorance
16.gif

& thanks

paul

----------------

Paul,

I would use the wood soap first. It can remove/deminish things you might try to sand and thus remove or diminish the need to sand, or not, but doing it first at least gives the wood a chance to give up the stain.

Per HDBR the acetone is fine.

Now be aware that "aged" wood/veneer obtains a "patina" as it ages. If you just spot/area sand, those spots/areas will look "new" compared to the surrounding veneer with "patina". Once you start sanding..... It does depend on the depth of your sanding as to how much "patina" is removed or if it is enough to be seen.

If these are nice speakers take your time. Patence is a virtue!!!16.gif

The only _____ questions are the ones you don't ask. 8.gif

Mike

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Mike,

Thanks again for your help.

I'll start with the woodsoap first. Is this similar to the saddle soap my dad gave me to use on my baseball mit and shoes when I was a kid-but for wood?

The speakers are acceptable as is. I am hesitant to sand too much as I would be pretty bummed to sand through the veneer. But yes, I would sand as evenly as I am able to yield a consistent finish. My goals are to clean up any nicks and scratches, see what ground I can gain on water stains and the like and above all give the speakers a nice finishing that will PRESERVE them for years to come.

I'm off to bed. Will post again as I progress.

Many thanks for your help!10.gif

paul

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I agree with the above. Certainly, being cautious is the way to go.

I've had some good luck with getting out stains with 400 (or 320) paper and furniture oil on walnut Forte II and Quartets. This is by hand and sanding with the grain and concentrating on the ring shaped stain. Yeah, it took some elbow grease.

My thought is that it is tough to remove much wood with 400 paper. I was quite surprised to find that the stains did come out and were indeed that shallow. Maybe the oil dissolved or floated out some the stain particulate.

The Forte need more work. As mentioned above by others, the patina is compromised. So I'll have to go back and even things out.

This is a bit contrary to my preconceived notions. The 400 wet or dry paper plus oil was enough to remove stains and there was no need to go to coarse paper which would be a very big threat to the veneer. Maybe it just takes off the first few wood cells.

Best,

Gil

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Gil,

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

When sanding with 400 did you do this wet or dry. If wet just with water?

paul

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You would not want to get the wood wet. This would raise the grain and create more sanding for you after the wood dried.

You can see some things I've done here: My Refinishing Page

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I used furnature oil from the local hardware store. It is found in supermarkets too. Sometimes it is called furniture polish. It is just light crankcase oil with some perfume and color.

Gil

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Paul,

DO NOT SAND until you really research this. The veneer layer is VERY thin and it could easily be sanded through - exposing the birch ply underneath. I would give serious consideration to the need to really do this. A better and safer approach would be to lightly steel wool the wood then oil the CW's with danish or Tongue Tree Oil - my preferred choice on any bare wood. Edges sand faster too so be careful!

Do you have pics? I use to build and repair guitars and have a fair amount of woodworking background - if I see pics I can better recommend a course of action.

Mark

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Ward, Gil, Mark,

Thanks for the replies.

Ok no wet sanding!

I will indeed continue to research before jumping in-I appreciate the points2.gif

I don't have a digital camera, but will work on borrowing one to post some pics.

That should help a lot-good suggestion.

Nice work on the linked site by the way. Those projects look superb!

My thanks,

paul

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Paul, I've had good luck sanding cabinets with a random orbit hand-held power sander. The ones made by Dewalt have a break on them so they don't spin out of control. The Makita's do not have a break and are more aggressive.

It always amazes me how I can get deep scratches out of veneer without sanding through. But you do need to be very careful not to go through the veneer. It really depends on your skill level in general. Some people just have a knack for doing things, while others would be through two layers of the inner core plywood layers before they realized something wasn't right.

If they were mine, I'd take all the drivers out and sand em down and put a new finish on them.

Greg

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Greg,

Thanks for the advice.

I think I'll go real easy and light on the sanding, and doing it by hand with a soft block.

Again, the speakers look pretty good as is, a few spots but do deep gashes.

I'll try an borrow a camera to clue folks in.

Take care,

paul

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Make sure you are well rested (and/or not drunk, too/either) before you sand them. Nothing like being rudely awakened by thumping your head on the cabinet when the sander finally busts a hole through the box!

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I just purchased used Cornwall’s vintage 1988. They are black and it looks like they might have been painted in the past. Bottom line I want to sand down to the veneer and refinish them. I understand I need to be careful not to go through the veneer. Any suggestions would be appreciated..

 

Mark

image.jpg

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@Kram Snave Personally, before sanding, I would remove all the drivers, etc., to make them more manageable and then use some type of stripper like Strypeeze and a plastic scraper.  This should get the brunt of the paint off versus wasting tons of sand paper getting clogged up with paint.  Using a nylon brush, or firm toothbrushes, with the stripper should help get down into some of the grain if it's penetrated in some.  There are thin bristle copper wire brushes I also use if it's really in the grooves.

 

Also, what does the back tags say on them?  What wood finish were they originally?  

 

You might ask a moderator to move this to your own thread which will get more exposure versus adding it on to a 15 year old thread.

 

@CECAA850  @dtel

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