Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Silvertone Radio / Phonograph

I think this is the last piece of furniture that I have to share with you that I have personally refinished.  I bought this Silvertone (from Sears) radio / phonograph combination at one of the estate garage sales of the lady that lived next door to me.  It had two layers of paint on it and was a pretty sorry sight.  I gave $5 for it with the stand.  The radio works, but the tuning string is broken, so you have to open the case up to tune it.  Working condition doesn't really matter to me much on this one, as I use it as my night stand.  It's the perfect size for next to the bed.

When I bought it, it was "antiqued" in red with a brown stain applied over it.  I noticed that a lot of the furniture items from the owner's house had been finished this way.  Some of it was in red, like this radio, some was in blue, and there were a few pieces in green.  After starting to work on stripping it, I discovered that there were two layers of paint on it, with a green paint and stenciled designs under the red paint.  How could I get so lucky?  Before I started using chemical stripper, I discovered that the original finish was never sanded before painting.  I used a razor blade glass scraper and was able to peel the paint off with a little patience and a lot of elbow grease.  I then applied a new coat of polyurethane over the original finish.  The base was a different story, and I couldn't get the paint to scrape off.  I resorted to stripping it with chemical stripper and refinishing it.  Unfortunately, I didn't have the right products available to perfectly match the original blond finish, but it is pretty close, and with the lighting in my bedroom, you can't really tell.


  1. That is beautiful and a true find. And $5, well I say the price is absolutely right. Congratulations! Stan

  2. Amazing piece! Again I'm impressed by your tenacity in refinishing furniture that has been abused!


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