Joe A from the Stroudsburg Home Depot was helping me decide if I should use a chemical stripper. I was unsure if the top was a laminate or veneer, or just a thick finish. After sanding and testing some MinWax, we determined it should be stripped. It's the only way to repair a finish that is this damaged.
Before stripping. I used BIX brand. You spray it on, let it sit, and use a plastic scraper to remove the finish.
Cabinet top stripped and sanded.
This is hours of work. After the chemical stripper is washed off, I used a detail sander, hand sanding with various grits of paper, and also steel wool.
I applied 2 coats of the MinWax Poly Shades, and then remembered that I decided I liked the color/finish of stain and a gloss. I think the PolyShades can finish a little streaky. It's never as smooth as a clear finish over stain. Luckily, I had stain in a good color, and had already purchased a gloss clear coat.
This is after the PolyShade was sanded, before a coat of stain to even it out.
This is today, after the regular stain, and with one WET coat of clear Minwax Polyurethane. Challenging photo day!
Two more coats to go, and then 3 on the bottom of this. So far, I'm LOVING the look of the wood grain, and the color. Much better than the PolyShades.
More on the cabinet later!