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pewternhrata

Audioholic Chief
Possibly @MrBoat I picked up a pair of old triads, veneer is very dry with some light scratches. I'm guessing what is considered open grain. Not sure how to properly clean them and get them back to life. I've read to use mild soap/water, barely damp cloth with the grain, and to stay away from oils, waxes and the like, looking for any advise to get these looking their best. I'll edit later with some pictures of the current condition soon.
 
Swerd

Swerd

Audioholic Spartan
Possibly @MrBoat I picked up a pair of old triads, veneer is very dry with some light scratches. I'm guessing what is considered open grain. Not sure how to properly clean them and get them back to life. I've read to use mild soap/water, barely damp cloth with the grain, and to stay away from oils, waxes and the like, looking for any advise to get these looking their best. I'll edit later with some pictures of the current condition soon.
If the veneer is open grain, clean it with the thinner used in open grain finishes such as Watco Danish Oil. I believe that's mineral spirits. Check to be sure.

Dampen a clean cloth with the thinner, and wipe the surface of the veneer. It should clean things up. If the veneer really has an open grain finish, the thinner will wet and temporarily darken the veneer. It may even make the grain show up better. As the thinner dries, it should return to it's paler original appearance. If you see that, then you know you have an open grain finish. If you like, after cleaning and a very light sanding with fine sandpaper or 0000 steel wool, apply a coat of clear Watco Danish Oil. It will penetrate the wood grain and dry, leaving a coat of linseed oil, but maintaining the open grain.

If the veneer is sealed, such as with a polyurethane varnish, the thinner should have little effect on the wood grain color. You can clean it mild soap and water. After that, you may want to go with light sanding to remove scratches, followed by another coat of poly. You'll have to decide if you want glossy, satin, or matte poly.
 
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MrBoat

Audioholic Samurai
Possibly @MrBoat I picked up a pair of old triads, veneer is very dry with some light scratches. I'm guessing what is considered open grain. Not sure how to properly clean them and get them back to life. I've read to use mild soap/water, barely damp cloth with the grain, and to stay away from oils, waxes and the like, looking for any advise to get these looking their best. I'll edit later with some pictures of the current condition soon.
Hard to say. I am always at the point where my next option is to strip/sand anyway so, any oil or finish restorer liquid I might try would just get stripped off anyway if it didn't work out. If the grain is checked, or the grain is actually visibly cracked, we're at the point where a sand and grain-fill/refinish is in order. It helps also if you know what finish is on there. You can pretty much rule out two part urethane. You would almost have to leave them outdoors to mess that up. If it's varnish, sometimes a wipe with boiled linseed will renew it enough. Dry veneer almost always indicates an oil finish. I would get some boiled linseed and try it on an inconspicuous (bottom?) area. If the scratches are across the grain, I would likely try applying linseed with the grain with 0000 steel wool to blend the scratch.

If the company is still in business, try giving them a call and see what they used. Yes, a rag dampened with mild soap will help get them cleaned.
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Overlord
If the veneer is open grain, clean it with the thinner used in open grain finishes such as Watco Danish Oil. I believe that's mineral spirits. Check to be sure.

Dampen a clean cloth with the thinner, and wipe the surface of the veneer. It should clean things up. If the veneer really has an open grain finish, the thinner will wet and temporarily darken the veneer. It may even make the grain show up better. As the thinner dries, it should return to it's paler original appearance. If you see that, then you know you have an open grain finish. If you like, after cleaning and a very light sanding with fine sandpaper or 0000 steel wool, apply a coat of clear Watco Danish Oil. It will penetrate the wood grain and dry, leaving a coat of linseed oil, but maintaining the open grain.

If the veneer is sealed, such as with a polyurethane varnish, the thinner should have little effect on the wood grain color. You can clean it mild soap and water. After that, you may want to go with light sanding to remove scratches, followed by another coat of poly. You'll have to decide if you want glossy, satin, or matte poly.
The problem with poly is that it doesn't really like to stick to itself after the previous coat has dried. It can, however, be cleaned pretty aggressively.

I agree with the previous poster- call Triad and ask what they used, since they're still very much in business.
 
Swerd

Swerd

Audioholic Spartan
The problem with poly is that it doesn't really like to stick to itself after the previous coat has dried. It can, however, be cleaned pretty aggressively.
You're probably right about that if his speaker cabs have a poly finish. And that might be why those speakers don't look poly coated to him. They don't have that impervious plastic-like look & feel.
 
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pewternhrata

Audioholic Chief
Awesome, thanks for the advise. I'll keep it updated, hopefully get at this soon
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Overlord
It really does have a dry unfinished texture and feel. Wish me luck, hopefully my experience in staining comes in handy even though I would prefer not to stain these.
You could test the finish on the bottom, to find out what it is, but calling Triad would be a good idea. I would think they didn't use nitrocellulose lacquer because it takes a long time to fully harden, but it's still possible if they imported the cabinets- it was also banned for use by manufacturers in parts of the US because of the chemicals in it, but they can use it if the spray facility meets EPA specs.

You would need to strip all of the finish off of the cabinets if you want to stain it- if you want to clean the finish, take them outside and wipe the surface with Naptha, but wear a mask for use with chemicals (it will indicate this on the packaging). Naptha won't soften the finish, but it will remove a lot of dirt.
 
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pewternhrata

Audioholic Chief
Started with watco rejuvenating oil, seemed like it should be 'harmless'
I'll most likely do a coat all around and go over with 0000 steel wool. Impressed overall at a quick wipe, up close the light scratches darkened slightly but not noticeable from a foot or more away (also under the impression it may lighten up as it fully dries)
 

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MrBoat

Audioholic Samurai
Started with watco rejuvenating oil, seemed like it should be 'harmless'
I'll most likely do a coat all around and go over with 0000 steel wool. Impressed overall at a quick wipe, up close the light scratches darkened slightly but not noticeable from a foot or more away (also under the impression it may lighten up as it fully dries)
That actually looks quite proper to my eye. Can't really go wrong with Watco.
 
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pewternhrata

Audioholic Chief
Applied with 0000 steel, 'buffed' after dry, darkened scratches cleared right up. Wayy easier than I thought. There are some trouble spots, a slight crack or peeling on edge at a very few places, not sure it's worth really digging into. Now I just need to clean the driver and surrounds, options for that? Just surface dust no tears thankfully, the 'baffles' that the mids are mounted into have some grime that cleaned up with damp cloth but look a little faded in a few spots, would be nice to freshen those up as well. Lastly, 2 screws are sitting a little loose on the mid, does the toothpick trick work (guessing a little wood glue with that) or should I goto a slightly larger diameter screw? I moved them upstairs to their new home and they sound phenomenal, that being said after I got rid of my svs ultras. Extremely happy with the soundstage even without a sub.
 

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