How to Get a Thick Build-Up of Finish on Wood Table Tops

A wood table is a reliable piece of furniture for any room in the home.

Wood tables are exposed to heat, liquid, and hard objects daily.Wood tables are exposed to heat, liquid, and hard objects daily.
If you have a wood dining table, you would be smart to create the most protective surface you can to prevent damaging the wood from heavy use. By adding multiple layers of polyurethane to the wood finish, you can create a protective surface that will continue to preserve the table for many years to come.

Sand the surface of the table using 60-grit sandpaper to remove the current stain and polyurethane on the table. Continue to sand the table and legs until you expose the natural grain.

Sand the table using the 120-grit sandpaper. Pay particular attention to rough edges and work your way over the entire surface to create a smooth, stainable finish.

Clean the table using degreaser and an old rag. Spread degreaser thoroughly over the surface and work it into the grain. Use a second rag to remove the degreaser, dust and dirt from the surface. Let the wood dry before you continue.

Spread stain over the wood with stain rags, working it into the grain in a circular motion. Allow stain to penetrate the surface for five to fifteen minutes depending on your desired depth of stain. Remove stain using an old rag, rubbing the surface until there are no puddles left. Let it set for six hours before adding a second coat of stain if needed.

Apply polyurethane over the entire surface of the table using a 3-inch foam brush. Apply a thin coat and allow the polyurethane to set before applying additional coats. The drying time generally ranges from six to eight hours depending on the brand.

Add additional coats of polyurethane in the same manner until you reach the desired thickness.

Things You Will Need

  • Water based wood stain
  • Water based Polyurethane
  • 60-grit sand paper
  • 120-grit sandpaper
  • Four 3-inch foam brushes
  • Old rags
  • Stain rags
  • Rubber gloves
  • Degreaser

About the Author

Nicole Byerly has been writing since 2003. She has published multiple works that have appeared in "Campus Philly." Byerly is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in cybersecurity at Utica College.