Got an old drafting table and there's wood stain and adhesive stuck on the edge: http://imgur.com/a/zyaJ0

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How can I remove the layer of gunk and clean it up a bit?

Obviously removing the edge would make cleaning easier, but I'm not quite sure that I could replicate the way it's attached now when re-attaching.

  • Welcome to stack exchange, what I could see on my phone may be able to be cleaned with mineral spirits. After that if the all rails pull apart more cleaning and thinned rubber cement on both sides and almost dryed has helped me in the pasrlike the original or a epoxy like gorilla glue or JB weld. The old way allowed for repair , new way may be stronger and last longer IF CORRECTLY placed in the start – Ed Beal Jun 5 '16 at 6:23

It appears that there are a series of things that are going on with the metal rail edge of the drafting table. Here is what I saw:

  1. There is residual celo tape or tape glue present.
  2. Original finish that appears to be a paint is rubbed off in many places.
  3. Some miscellaneous glue or finish drippings seem to be present.
  4. There appears to be some dark finish the has dripped across the rail.
  5. Some spots on the rail appear that they may even have some rust spots.
  6. The rail looks to have been dislodged from its original position by some 1/8 to 1/4 inch.

I could recommend the following steps to clean up the rails.

  1. I would try to pound the rail back into its proper position. Use a non-marring block of hardwood and a hammer to do this so the metal end does not get messed up. When doing this evaluate if the rail could be completely removed by sliding it out of its mounting grooves. If this could be done the rail can be more easily cleaned up, refinished and pounded back into place after the fact.
  2. Use something like a razor blade scraper to shave off the tape and any drips of finish and stain. This may also help remove any paint scale.
  3. Apply some elbow grease with steel wool pads to remove all of the remaining paint and finish off the rails. You could start with a coarse steel wool and then reduce to a finer pad to shine up the rail to the clear and shiny steel.
  4. Move the table to a well ventilated place.
  5. Apply masking tape and paper to cover the table right up to the edges of the metal rail.
  6. Spray on two very light coats of a clear finish such as Krylon Clear Gloss Lacquer Spray. As with any spray finish application go easy and light. Pooling of the applied material will result in runs.
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