How can I make the chest top look better on this Lane Ser# 146030?


I have 3 matching pieces - dresser, side table and cedar chest that are Style 481777. All have some damage on the tops, looking for suggestions on how to fix. Thank you

q how can i make the chest top look better on this lane ser 146030
q how can i make the chest top look better on this lane ser 146030
q how can i make the chest top look better on this lane ser 146030
q how can i make the chest top look better on this lane ser 146030
  17 answers
  • Kathy Gunter Law Kathy Gunter Law on Mar 11, 2020

    Rejuvenate might work. Also, Old English makes a scratch cover in 2 colors. You might try the light one.

  • Gk Gk on Mar 11, 2020

    The tops do look pretty scratched up and worn. I think I would consider sanding with a fine and extra fine sandpaper to smooth everything out. I would then check into General Finishes water based stain. There are a few different color choices and it is so easy to apply with very little prep. You could then finish it with either their clear sealer or a waterbased polyacrylic. General Finishes has 2 types of stain--the gel version is a more solid color stain so make sure you pick the one that will give you the results you desire. Minwax also makes some good stain products as well. I am NOT fond of their PolyShades products--which is a stain/poly combination--because it is hard to get a good finish that doesn't look streaky and it requires quite a few coats to get a nicer looking finish. This is a REALLY nice set! I have never seen the "Pioneer" version of Lane! Nice!

  • It looks like the tops will need refinishing. Use an orbital sander with fine grit sandpaper. You will need to try to match the finish, or try using a tung oil finish.

  • on Mar 11, 2020

    Consider Restor-a-finish. :)

  • Vimarhonor Vimarhonor on Mar 11, 2020

    Hello. It may be necessary to sand and restain seal the items for the best outcome.

  • Dee Dee on Mar 11, 2020

    I would lightly sand, just to make an even finish not to take off the finish. Then I would get some General Finishes stain and restain the pieces. I would buy Spar varathane and put a nice hard layer on the top to seal.

  • Megan Megan on Mar 11, 2020

    Oh I LOVE these! I would definately sand the tops and retain! They will turn out beautiful! What great about them being nice and worn is that usually sanding takes less time!

  • Marie Karen Marie Karen on Mar 11, 2020

    Thank you for the help! These are not my style but date back to 1941 and have been in my husband’s family.

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Mar 12, 2020

    Hello Marie,

    If they have dig's and dings, use a wood filler and then rub down, or try Wax crayons the colour of the wood rubbed across the damage to build up and fill the dings. Best wishes.

  • Michelle Leslie Michelle Leslie on Mar 12, 2020

    Hi there, I'm hoping this video will give you enough pointers to restore the tops of your beautiful set -

  • I would remove all the old stain and varnish using and orbital sander first. Then add new stain to the colour you want and seal with oil based polyurethane. They are beautiful pieces.

  • K. Rupp K. Rupp on Mar 12, 2020

    Yes sand everything down starting with 180 grit and work your way up to 220. Tack cloth, Vaccuum. Then decide if you want to paint or stain.

    It looks like it is solid wood....I can't tell from the pics but if there is any peeling veneer, I have a post I wrote on how to remove the veneer easier. Here is the Hometalk post:

    Looks like a great project. Good luck!

  • Redcatcec Redcatcec on Mar 12, 2020

    From your good pictures (thanks for posting them) it looks like superficial damage to the tops.

    Start by removing the hinges and knobs, clean them up. Use and orbital sander to remove the effected parts and to strip any existing stain/varnish. Vacuum and wipe the pieces down with a damp cloth, let air dry. If there are any noticible dents, dings, or scratches left at this point they can be repaired by wood filler that closely matches the wood.

    If you decide to paint and if you choose chalk paint you do not have to prep the wood, just paint at this point, remember you'll need a wax or topcoat to protect the chalk paint, It has a tendency to flake otherwise if left without a top coat.

    A new stain maybe the way you'd consider going, they have polyurethanes with the stain in them.

    Another thought could be to change out the knobs, the originals are part of the characteristics of these pieces, but you may prefer something else, you can experiment with different knobs.

    Something that I learned recently is chests ( the long one without drawers) can present as an excellent hiding place for children. I would disable the lock if there is one, they can be trapped in and suffocate. I don't mean to be morbid, but would want to share information on safety.

    Best to you on your beautiful project.

  • Beth Beth on Mar 12, 2020

    If you don't want to sand and refinish it--and believe, me I understand; I don't like having to do that either--you could try putting a fabric runner or large doily on top to hide the scratches. I like the look of runners and fabric on wood!

  • Marie Karen Marie Karen on Mar 12, 2020

    This has been very helpful and learned they are Virginia House Hard Rock Maple wood. I am ordering a replacement piece from Lane for the cedar chest lock as it is a hazard. Thanks for all the suggestions!

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Jan 15, 2021


    Can you share Photo's of the actual damaged areas?

  • Lifestyles Homes Lifestyles Homes on Jan 19, 2021

    I wouldn't over-restore these pieces and just sand down the tops, as described above.

    Unless you find a very low VOC polyurethane, I wouldn't do this project until late Spring when you can open some windows or do it in the garage.

    Also, you might consider using a sanding sealer too.