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My wife inherited an old cedar chest from her favorite aunt. It is a beautiful piece of furniture that is estimated to be over 60 years old, and all hand crafted. The only problem with the cedar chest is that it no longer has that wonderful aromatic smell. I looked high and low for products that would some how rejuvenate the wood and bring it back to it’ former aroma. I even tried a bit of cedar extra oil on a small part, but not only did it not work, the small amount of good it did only lasted a few days.
I was explaining my problem to a fellow woodworker and our annual summer picnic in the park when one of our “mature” woodworkers overheard our conversation. “Oh, he said, that’s simple, if you want to restore the sharp smell of cedar, just give it a light sanding, a 220 grit should be fine”. And that was all he said on the topic. I thought about what he had told me all the way home after the picnic. I didn’t even wait to unpack the car, I took the old cedar chest into the shop and began gently hand sanding. I was truly amazed at how little work it took to not only nicely re-finish the inside cedar, but restore the smell to what I’m sure must be the original smell of the cedar chest when it was constructed. I really need to thank this gentleman next time I see him for giving me such a simple solution to a baffling question.
Copyright Colin Knecht