Old pianos lose their shine and luster over the years. This article will show you step by step how to refinish your piano and piano seat.
Step 1: Lay plastic, or a painters tarp down on the floor underneath and around your piano. This will protect your flooring from the mess of sanding and from the stain or paint. If your piano is near a wall, or walls, cover them with plastic too.
Step 2: Cover the piano keys with plastic. Use masking tape to hold the plastic in place. You do not want any dust or paint to get on or in between the keys. Lift the lid of the piano. Place plastic over the open space and use masking tape to hold it in place. It’s also very important to not allow any dust or paint in this space as well. Put the cover back down once you have the plastic in place. If your piano has any emblems or hardware they should be covered as well.
Step 3: Use an electric handheld sander with rough grit sandpaper to remove all of the old stain, varnish or paint from the entire surface of your piano. If you are also refinishing the piano seat sand that as well. Once you have gone over everything with rough grit switch to fine grit. Go over the entire piano again using the fine grit then go over the seat again. Rough grit sand paper removes the top layer and any damages to the wood. Fine grit sandpaper prepares the wood for refinishing.
Step 4: Use a shop vac to clean up all of the dust that was created when you sanded. Wipe the piano, and seat down well using a dry cloth. It’s very important that no dust remains on the wood. Any remaining dust will interfere with the new finish.
Step 5: Use either stain or a glossy black spray paint meant for wood surfaces to refinish your piano. To keep the natural wood look choose stain. Apply stain to a clean dry cloth and rub it onto the wood in a circular motion. Use another dry cloth to remove excess stain quickly. Do not allow excess stain to set on the wood or it will result in dark spots. One the first coat of stain has been applied look at your piano and seat closely. If you are happy with the richness of the color move on to step 7. If not apply a second application of stain.
Step 6: For a black, glossy finish use a glossy black spray paint made for wood surfaces. Hold the can eight to ten inches away from the wood and spray on the first coat. Work in a back and forth motion. Move the can quickly, but not too quickly. Moving too slowly will cause runs and bubbles but moving too fast will leave the paint looking spotty and uneven. Spray the entire piano, and the seat as well. Allow the first coat of paint one hour to dry then apply a second. If you are happy with the coverage move on to step 7. If not, apply a third coat and allow it another hour to dry before moving on to the next step.
Step 7: The final step is to apply a protective coat of polyurethane over the entire piano and over the seat if applicable. Poly will enhance the shine of your glossy black spray paint and will protect a stained wood surface. Polyurethane is water resistant. You will be able to wipe down your piano and seat with a damp cloth when it needs to be cleaned or dusted. Use a large foam paint brush to apply the poly. Let the first coat dry for one hour then apply a second. Allow the second coat to dry for at least twelve hours before using the piano. Wait a few hours after the final coat of poly has been applied to remove the plastic. Enjoy your newly refinished piano and seat for years to come!