Podiums and pulpits are essential for speakers, pastors, and teachers. When a podium or pulpit gets a lot of use the finish becomes chipped, and may even peel. Replacing it could cost a small fortune. If your wooden podium or pulpit is looking a little dull you can refinish it to bring it back to life. This article will show you how.
The first thing you’ll want to do is to make sure all of the papers and books have been removed. Many podiums and pulpits have shelves or drawers. Be sure they are empty then take the podium or pulpit outside to the work shop or garage. If your church or organization does not have a work shop or garage just set it on the side walk or in the parking lot when an extension cord will reach.
Plug in the extension cord if you are using one and ready your electric handheld sander with a piece of rough grit sand paper. Use the rough grit to remove all of the old finish from the wood surface. Once all of the old finish has been removed switch to fine grit and go over it again. The insides of shelves and drawers may be easier to sand using a single piece of sand paper rather than the electric handheld sander. Don’t forget to sand the leg and the base. Be sure to sand all edges too.
When you have finished sanding with the fine grit dust the podium or pulpit off well using a dry cloth. Do not use a damp cloth because you don’t want any moisture in the wood. Once the podium or pulpit is dust free proceed on to the next step.
Choose a stain color that will match the décor of your church or institutes interior. Use a soft dry cloth to rub the stain on in a circular motion. Use another dry cloth to quickly wipe off any excess stain as letting it set or remain will cause dark spots. If you are happy with the color after the first application of stain you can begin to apply polyurethane. If not apply another coat of stain to richen and deepen the color.
You do not have to wait to begin to apply the poly. You can do it immediately after staining. Slowly pour some of the polyurethane into a clean paint tray. Avoid shaking or stirring the poly as it will cause air bubbles to form which will transfer to and blemish the wood surface.
Apply the poly using a large foam paint brush. Brush on a good even coat then wait half an hour before brushing on the second coat. A third and even fourth coat may be applied if desired for maximum shine and protection. The poly will leave the surface of the wood moisture resistant and cleanable. The podium or pulpit can be wiped down with disinfectants or cleans after each use, or at the end of each day.
Allow the final coat of polyurethane 24 hours to dry before using. If you’ve refinished in a garage or workshop just leave it there over night. If you’ve refinished outside on the side walk or in the parking lot it will need to be brought back inside. Be very careful not to dent or smudge the poly when you are moving it. For those refinished outside it’s best to wait at least 2 hours before attempting to move the podium or pulpit.