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Antique Furniture/Jenny Lind Bed - Double Size


QUESTION: Dear Robert,

What would be a good finish to use on the repaired areas of my bed?  And, is there anything uniquely desireable about this bed?  What do you recommend for filling small dings in the wood?

I bought a spindle bed from a local consignment shop that was marked Antique Jenny Lind Bed.  At home I found that the wood around one of the side rail mounts was badly split.  The side rails attach with metal tabs that insert into slots in the headboard/footboard, which I've come to learn means it's no older than mid-20th century.  I made a fairly good repair using West Epoxy and a bazillion clamps.  However, to clean up the epoxy and unevenness of the splinters I had to sand quite a bit.  I believe the wood to be walnut with a matt finish, but I'm no expert!  The finish may be some sort of oil and/or wax because the epoxy that dripped onto finished wood peeled right off.  I think epoxy would stick like crazy to varnish.

ANSWER: use the follow up function and post close picture of the damage area at the rail connection.  one close picture of the wood grain.  need to see connector of the rail or the place into which it connects.

is there a label on the back of the headboard.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

Repaired area
Repaired area  

QUESTION: Dear Robert,

I am attaching the additional photographs you requested.  I have more that might be helpful, but am limited to 2 per posting.  These are the repaired area, and a no-flash picture of the wood.  I found that a tripod and no flash gave a much better image of the grain detail and color.

There is ink printing on the back of the lower board of the headboard.  The first line reads, all in upper case, "NO 5511" and the second line reads, "CANDLELIGHT PI?".  There is a 3rd character, but it cannot be read.

Thank you,

I see no walnut grain here.  might be tulip poplar stained walnut, light walnut.

to repair the color.  first use some shellac and a rag.  wipe some shellac on the bare area and wood around where it needs to be colored.  this will keep the stain from absorbing uncontrolled. then wipe with 320 paper to smooth.  you can use artists colors (oil or water) to mix a color to match and brush it on.  mix the color on glass so you can hold it up to the wood to see if you have it right.

have fun with it and once colored where you want it, spray some shellac on from a spray can to lock it in.  couple of coats, once dry smooth and wax to match.

hope this helps

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robert klein


Regarding American antique, vintage, and collectible furniture I can help with wood identification, styles, age, periods, historical coatings, materials, techniques, repair, restoration, refinishing. Please read instructions for posting.


I have been in the antiques furniture and restoration business and in the sales of American antique furniture for 40+ years and have continued my education in the trade attending workshops and seminars through several organizations.

Professional Refinishers Groop, Int., AIC, Antiques Dealers Association

BA Florida State University BA University of West Florida 1971

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