I’m a new but enthusiastic wood refinisher—reading some books, browsing some sites,. We live in a 1916 house in Oakland, CA with beautiful interior woodwork, most of which is in great shape. But one windowsill is showing some battle scars (some water stains, and lots of general fading—photos attached). I’d like to refinish it. From my reading, the original finish is most likely shellac. 1) If I were to use amber shellac to refinish, would I first need to strip the existing marred shellac finish, or could I apply a coat (or coats?) of shellac directly to the sill ? 2) If I do need to remove the damaged finish (and I suspect I do…), what would be a good solvent to use on shellac, since denatured alcohol is illegal in California? Thank you for your help!
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