Eco-Friendly Furniture Refinishing – Part 2

Mahogany Podium
(Solid Mahogany Podium – soda blasted with ACE Model 2-PS Soda Blaster- total time 35 minutes – Picture courtesy of High Grade Finishing / Ainsworth Antiques, Enfield, CT)

Hi Everybody! Welcome to my blog about soda blasting, the environmentally friendly cleaning method that uses a form of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) in place of other non-environmentally friendly, and health hazardous blasting medias like sand.

In my earlier postings, I explained what soda blasting is, what makes soda blasting such a unique cleaning process, some basic information on air compressors, on soda blasting equipment, and on a few popular applications. Once you understand how soda blasting works, it is much easier to appreciate why it is such an effective, safe, and eco-friendly cleaning method for many different types of jobs.

As I mentioned before, soda blasting has become a worldwide phenomenon! As I think back over the last several years, I am amazed at all of the different types of projects that I’ve been involved with, from helping do-it-yourself home owners, to assisting all kinds of businesses, large and small. I enjoy hearing from people, who have used soda blasting on their projects based on my recommendations. It is very satisfying to know that I’ve helped someone achieve completion of an important job.

In my last blog posting, I wrote about a very large furniture refinishing project, involving over 200 wooden church pews. Today, I want to tell you about projects involving individual pieces of antique wooden furniture. A few weeks ago, I got a phone call from Russell at High Grade Finishing / Ainsworth Antiques in Enfield, Connecticut. Russell had heard about soda blasting and wondered if it would be applicable for stripping antique wooden furniture. He had grown tired of using chemical strippers or farming out the stripping, and dealing with inconsistent results and timeframes.

Russell is a very thorough person, and he wanted to be sure that soda blasting would do what he wanted it to do. I recommended that he use the ACE Model 2-PS Heavy Duty Portable Soda Blaster with a fan tip nozzle for the best results. After a number of phone conversations and emails, he decided to give it a shot. With his permission, I want to share the emails and pictures that he sent me yesterday.

“Yesterday we used the ACE soda blaster for the first time ever. The results were overwhelmingly great. We stripped off old varnish and lacquers on 9 separate items. I timed each item to the minute. The 9 items were completed in just 99 total minutes on just 1 -50 lb. bag of maintenance flow soda. Below I have posted just a few of the items with strip times. Every item came out smooth and spotless leaving much less sanding to do, unlike chemical stripping.”

elman chair before 1 elman chair stripped 2


soda arm chair before 1 soda arm chair stripped 2


“Platform rocker whole chair stripped in 5 minutes, top has burl walnut veneer no damage at all. It stripped all the detailed areas instantly much quicker than chemical stripping.  This machine is going to save us a fortune. We used to farm out a large portion of the stripping. We no longer have to do so, nor do we have to rely on other vendors to do an adequate job.”

platform rocker before ed. platform rocker stripped whole ch. platform rocker stripped ed 2.

As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. Soda blasting really is one of the most exciting, environmentally friendly cleaning processes available today. We are all put here on this planet for a short time, so let’s make the best of it and help preserve it for future generations.

Thanks for reading my blog! – The Soda Blasting Guy

3 thoughts on “Eco-Friendly Furniture Refinishing – Part 2

  1. I am just learning about soda blasting. I have a 1928 baby grand piano that I want to refinish and this looks like a great way to strip of the old stuff (which looks like it has a bad paint job over the original laquer). What courseness of soda do you use for furniture blasting?

    • Hi CH,
      Thanks for reading my blog. I would recommend starting with Armex Flow M soda blast media and blasting at a low pressure using a fan tip nozzle. I would also recommend test blasting an old scrap piece of painted wood first, so that you get the hang of it before tackling that baby grand. For a more detailed explanation, give my friends at ACE Automotive Cleaning Equipment a call. They have years of experience in advising people on all kinds of soda blasting jobs. I think you’ll find them to be most helpful. Thanks again and good luck! – The Soda Blasting Guy

  2. Pingback: Index and Links Archive for The Soda Blasting Guy | The Soda Blasting Guy

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