Handmade Music Clubhouse

Cigar Box Guitar Headquarters - CBG HQ

  any one wanting to look for info on old cigar boxes check this site out. some real vintage boxes to look at. Plus lots of interesting reading.        http://cigarhistory.info/Site/NCM_HOME.html

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Randy I took some great photos in a cigar museum in Ybor City, Florida a couple years ago. I love the old boxes. I stopped in at our funky old hardware store 3-4 weeks ago. I stop into to look for antique hinges and brass stuff.  The owner and I talk about CB Ukes. He asked me if I was interested in an old CB he'd picked up at a garage sale years ago. It was in bad shape. The box was structurally sound but someone had used it for storing nuts and bolts in and spilled motor oil on 1/3 of one corner of the lid and side corner.  However, it is pre-Castro! He only charged me $2 so I figured I give it a try.  I've tried a couple of products/methods that were suggested online and have pulled a good amount out.  I just located a product called Pour n Restore. It's for pulling oil out of concrete. I've test sanded the box and it still has enough oil in that it clogs the sand paper pretty quickly. Once I can get the oil out it's sand away and they stain it with a black cherry and go from there. It's a beauty as far as imprinted advertising and logos. Any other thoughts on restoration? 

fill it with oil dry. then i still think yer screwed!

I'll let you know


I started out with one of those environmentally safe products called Lift Off. It took some of the oil out after two or three applications. But in itself left the wood moist and with surface oil still trying to come out that I had to keep wiping away.

Then I found a suggested product called Pour n Restore. It was at my local Sears store. 10 oz for $10.95.  It is used to remove motor oil soaked into concrete. 

You pour it on and squeegee it into place as it is fairly thick. Let it dry for 5-8 hours and it turns to a dirty looking white powder.  I brushed it off and let the wood dry out.  There was still some residue on the wood so I took an old tooth brush applied a little tap water with liquid hand soap and scrubbed the residue. Rinsed it off and hung the box on a hook to dry.

I checked it the next day and found the wood to be a bit bleached out. Not a problem as I intended to apply a darker type stain like, red mahogany, red cheery or even kona anyway.  But the oil is gone. Short of a little TLC taken when repurposing this fine old box it's for all intents and purposes... restored. :)

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