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Varnish nightmare

We recently purchased a used log cabin to use as a guest house. We didn't notice at the time of purchase that something had been sprayed (some sort of a dark stain) all over the interior walls and then varnished over. We tried sanding it off to no avail, as the varnish just gummed up the sand paper. We are now using Jasco environmentally friendly stripper - but this is a sticky horrible HUGE job. Is there any other way to get this stain off the walls? It has been varnished in. UGH! HELP!

Re: Varnish nightmare

From your description, I'm wondering if someone didn't apply some raw linseed oil to the logs rather than varnish ... or applied varnish over the top of raw linseed oil.

There are no driers in raw linseed oil and so it never cures out/sets up. It remains gummy....and would "merge" with any oil based varnish that was applied over the top.

Have you tried removing the stuff with just some straight mineral spirits? You'd likely have to give the MS a minute or so to soak in before the RLO would come off...*if* this works at all.

Lacquer thinner would be another potential option, but rubber gloves and good ventilation would be a must.

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