How to Age Wooden Furniture with a Torch

Upcycle Furniture

TS4000-High Heat Torch for Fast Work Times

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Breathe new life into new or old furniture by scorching the wood to create unique and attractive aged and distressed effects.

  • Torching brings out character in wood without the hassle and mess of paint and stains.
  • The longer the torch is applied to the wood, the darker it will become.
  • Applying the flame for just a few seconds will loosen residual paint or create a distressed finish—take caution not to ignite the piece you’re working on.

TIPS

  • Read our General Safety Precautions in the Information Center before starting your project.
  • Read the instructions that come with your torch before beginning your project.
  • Practice and experiment with your technique on a piece of scrap lumber before torching the furniture.
  • Use your torch on new metal hardware to achieve an aged look.
  • Always remove torch from fuel cylinder and store fuel in an upright position after completing your project.

WHAT YOU'LL NEED

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Tools

  • TS4000-High Heat Torch for Fast Work Times
  • Bernzomatic 14.1 oz. Propane Hand Torch Cylinder
  • Keep a fire extinguisher or water source nearby in case of emergency.
  • Safety glasses
  • Safety mask or respirator
  • Wet cloth
  • Work gloves

Materials

  • Wooden furniture
  1. Step 1Clean the surface of the furniture to remove any paint, varnish or other old finishes/coatings on the wood. The torch can be used to remove old paint—simply warm the paint with the heat of the torch until it softens, and scrape away remnant paint with a painter’s tool or putty knife. However, NEVER use a torch to strip paint known to contain lead.
  2. Step 2Light your torch and hold the flame two to three inches above the wood’s surface. Hold the torch over the surface longer for a darker finish. Move the torch continuously.
  3. Step 3Wave the flame across the surface in the direction of the wood grain until the desired darkness of the wood is reached.
  4. Step 4Use a damp cloth to wipe the charred wood in the direction of the grain until any char is removed, leaving the discolored grain exposed. Protect the torched surface with the finish of your choice.