How to remove perminant ink from wood without ruining finish.

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Charles J P, Jan 1, 2002.

  1. Charles J P

    Charles J P Cinematographer

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    We have what appears to be bleed-through from when someone was scribbling on paper with a pen on our dining room table. It is a natural wood color and has a semi-glossy finish. It is not regular ink, but is probably from one of those gelly roll pens. Is there anything that will take it off without ruining the finish? It is a swirl scribble pattern about the size of a quarter like someone was trying to get the ink started. Any ideas?
     
  2. Bill Catherall

    Bill Catherall Screenwriter

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    Try some WD-40 and a soft rag.
     
  3. Charles J P

    Charles J P Cinematographer

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    I tried Goo-Gone, a fairly powerful citrus oil cleaner for removing sticky stuff like glue and gum. It dont even touch it. I was wondering if acetone in fingernail polish remover would damage the finish.
     
  4. Bill Catherall

    Bill Catherall Screenwriter

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    Fingernail polish remover or acetone might remove the varnish. My daughter once marked all over a nicely painted wall with a Crayola crayon. Water didn't take it off, Goo Gone didn't take it off either. We looked up Crayola's website and they recommended WD-40. Took it right off without damaging the paint. Give it a shot. If it works then we can chalk it up for another one of WD-40's many uses. [​IMG] Also, you can then use the Goo Gone to remove the oily residue the WD-40 will leave behind.
     
  5. Sean Conklin

    Sean Conklin Screenwriter

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    I agree both WD-40 and Goo Gone are my favorite cleaning agents.
     
  6. Charles J P

    Charles J P Cinematographer

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    I'll pick up a can of WD-40 tonight. Its not like I would never use it. I'll let you guys know if it works, just to satisfy your curiosity.
     
  7. Charles J P

    Charles J P Cinematographer

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    The WD-40 did not work. It looks like pencil drawing, but it wont come off, so it has to be bled through ink. I dont know what to try next. What's going to bug me more, the marks, or posibly screwing up the finish? [​IMG]
     
  8. Bill Catherall

    Bill Catherall Screenwriter

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    That's unfortunate. What's worse is that from doing some quick research on the internet I've found that if the ink has penetrated the finish it's almost impossible to remove it from the wood. The only options are to redo the finish, or leave it as is. From my quick reading I've discovered that most appraisers consider ink stains to be part of the natural patina of the wood and don't discount it. [​IMG] Another option is to enroll the kid that did it into art school and hope they become a famous artist. Then those scribbles will be worth millions. [​IMG] [​IMG]
    If you can narrow down the type of pen or marker that was used (if you aren't absolutely certain it was a gelly pen) then I'd call the company up and ask them if they have any solvents that will take out the pen marks but not ruin your finish. You may also try calling up some furniture refinishing/restoration shops and see if they have a solution. Finally, give 3M a call. I'm sure if a solvent exists that will work for you...they will make it.
    Good luck!
     

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