I bought a 2 part wood bleach as apparently this is best for taking the natural colour out of the wood. There are other products that are more suitable for removing wood dye or water staining.
Here's what I'm using:
The problem I have is that there are some grease marks which have not lifted out. They have penetrated into the pine.
|Can you see them?|
I wanted to see how the bleach would work on these areas, so on the table leg where I removed the wax, I smeared a fingertip dipped in olive oil.
Then I applied part A of the bleach.
(This leg will be painted over so it's perfect to experiment on.)
Bleach part A is on the darker areas of the picture. I left the middle dry for a colour comparison. At this point the bleach treated bits look darker because they're wet. I didn't apply it as liberally as I might on a flat table top as it was running. I let that sit for 10 mins. It said 10-20 mins but I'm impatient.
I did the second coat with part B and saw an almost immediate lightening. You're supposed to leave it for 2 hours. After one and a half hours I wanted to go to bed and the wood didn't seem to have lightened any further so I cleaned it off with a cloth and water.
Here's the result when it dried:
As you can see, the oil spot hasn't bleached. Hmm....
There is a difference in the bleached areas. It's not as big as I was hoping for. This could be because I didn't apply as liberally as the instructions suggested. Also the picture is not great as it was taken at night.
The picture below might be better to show the lightened areas.
|This picture might be just as bad actually.|
So what to do about those grease spots? After 5 mins of net surfing I read that lighter fluid can get them out. Tracking that down was a bit tricky.
And really, I think I may have killed a few brain cells, even though the window was open wide, but I can't see much difference after using that. If any.
So I'm embracing imperfection and going ahead with the wood bleach anyway. Apparently you can even do it twice if it's not light enough the first time around.
So stay tuned for the next gripping instalment of 'adventures with wood bleach' and I should have a pale scrubbed pine table top to share with you next time.
If you think I'm being a bit half arsed and slow about this, let me tell you I am not! The white spirit needs a couple of days to disappear before you can apply the bleach. And the quest for lighter fluid delayed me further.
Plus I have been living with a great fear that the TV people will phone and say, ''Can we pop round tomorrow?'' so I have been painting the hallway furiously to remove all tiny hand prints and even painting skirting boards! Because telly folk care about these things. Probably.
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