Introduction: Bamboo Chair Refinsihed

About: I am a self taught average carpenter. I started doing carpentry for the first time in 2010. I have moved up to being a finish carpenter and installer. I am also self taught on Auto CAD and Adobe Illustrator…

As an introduction, I was given several chairs to refinish. The chairs are made out of Bamboo, however this was not visible as over the years, they had been refinished with an opaque finish that ended up covering all the bamboo, so it literally looked like a "painted chair".


Paint Stripper

Presser Washer


Finish (Your Choice, I chose a Lacquer Clear coat)

Step 1: Paint Stripper


So, first thing to do is to lather paint stripper on the areas where you want to remove the paint. In my case, this was the entire bamboo structure. Follow the instructions of the paint stripper you buy, but generally this should say to lather it on and then let it sit for about 15 minutes.

You will know when it is working as you will see the paint start to bubble off. See photos.

As a note, do not let it dry as then the paint just attaches itself back to the surface it was on.

Step 2: Pressure Washing

So this was a new thing for me, I have not used a pressure washer before to strip paint off, but I was tired of having to sand it by hand.

As you can see in the short video, this worked beautifully. Everywhere that I put the paint stripper on, it came off just great. You want to move at a slow and even pace in order to keep this simple. It comes off better that way.

The only downside of this is that all the fabric on the chair is soaking wet, however I put these in front of a fan for a couple hours and they were totally dry.

As a note, by the time you are done with the pressure washer, there are a lot of fibers that have come loose. For the chairs I am doing, these are handled by me doing sanding, in the next step.

As another note, please read the safety warnings of the pressure washer and do not point this at any family or friends, or even at yourself. It does hurt. :)

Step 3: Sanding

The next step is sanding. I use 150 grit sandpaper to get off anything I missed with the paint stripper as well as any loose fibers from the pressure washing. This is now a very fast step and for my chairs, has to be done by hand due to the bamboo being round.

Step 4: Finishing

For this step I will just give broad direction as every finish is different. I used a lacquer clearcoat to finish them.

You can see in the before and after photos, the natural look is very appealing.

After finishing I will replace any of the fabric piping that may have been damaged due to the pressure washing.

Step 5: Completed Cycle.

This shows the chair before and after so you can see the difference.

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