View Full Version : Aniline Wax Pull-up: Dye Refinishing: How to Restore an old Sun-Faded Aniline Waxed Pull-Up Leather Sofa?

02-11-2009, 11:50 AM
Any recommendations on how to restore this old sun-faded waxed aniline sofa?





Danny Strickland
02-14-2009, 06:55 PM
start with a heat gun and see how much wax you can move by rubbing.

i'm sure you'll need to get some moisture below the wax at some point. i'll be interested to see Rogers responce.

Roger Koh
02-14-2009, 11:02 PM
The question asked is how to restore this “old sun-fading” aniline waxed pull-up leather sofa.

And I believe the emphasis is on the word “old” and “sun-fading” problems that need to be restored with satisfaction.

Yes we can use a heat gun to try to move the wax upwards to the surface if it’s relatively new, but since it’s old the result may be mediocre.

And you are very right on the moisture content that needs to be top-up too!

Besides the topcoat is all cracked up, the deteriorating top coat need remove and new top coat (anilineTop54S™ satin or anilineTop54HG High Gloss) to be put in place.

Three components of the leather constituents need replenish or revive as well.

First it is the dyestuff, if we can wick up this dyestuff sufficiently with relaxer3.3™ to the surface we may then save the dyeing process but the sun faded areas may be questionable.

Therefore, I believe re-dyeing to the entire sofa may be desirable for aesthetic with matching anilineDye21™.

Second is the necessity to replenish the original fatliquor with fatliquor5.0™ to soften and strengthen the leather structure.

Third is the necessity to replenish the wax effect too with waxEffect95™.

Then come the prep clean before we can introduce what’s diminished, faded or cracked.

With the sample I received for color matching, let me also work out the best logical workflow to string up all these sequence of steps.

To be presented on my next post.

Meanwhile further questions are welcome.

Roger Koh
Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification #942
Leather Care Technician
Master Textile Cleaner
Master Fire & Smoke Restorer
Journeyman Water Restorer
Since 1973

Roger Koh
02-16-2009, 09:42 PM
After receiving the sample and testing it, here are the recommended sequences of steps to restore this aniline wax pull-up leather.

#1: Deteriorated Top Coat Removal:
Remove old top coats preferably using a speed control oscillating sander with 1000/1200/1500 grit sandpaper.
And vacuum follows with air-gun blast in combination with vacuuming again to control air borne dust in enclosed environment.
All nicks and repairs need be done with leatherBond3D™ and auxiliary leatherBond7A™ prior to sanding.
Do not hurt the grains of the leather.

#2: Prep Cleaning:
Degrease with d”Grease4.9™ and de-oil with d’Oil4.4™ where necessary.

#3: Scrubbing:
Scrub with anilineEraser4™.

#4: Cleaning:
Clean off sticky residues with clean3.8™.

#5: Acidifier Rinse:
Rinse with rinse3.0™.

#6: Erasing with Fine Sanding:
When the leather is dry, erase off wicked up residues, stretch (eliminate grain darkening) and fine sanding again to prepare surface for dyes.

#7: Check Surface Tension:
A very fine mist spray of surfactant3.6™ to check the surface over for blotchiness will be a good assurance that the dyeing will be evenly absorbed onto the grains.

#8: Spray Dyeing:
Spray custom anilineDye21™ concentrate on the faded areas and feather out to blend.
Speed dry with appropriate drying device and recheck for thoroughness of dye coverage.

#9: Leather Structure Softening & Strengthening:
Spray soak and brush in fatliquor5.0™ evenly to replenish original fatliquor.
Cover up with plastic sheet for a minimum of 4 hours and thereafter remove for slow drying.

#10: Replenish Original Wax Effect:
Spray soak and brush in waxEffect95™ evenly to replenish original wax effect.
Allow for slow drying until a haze of wax residue appears:

#11: Activating Surface Wax:
When a cloudy film of wax appears, activate by using a heat gun gently to melt the residual wax to a sheen.

#12: Adhesion Coating:
Apply adhesion coat by padding or by foam brush evenly avoiding streaks or drips and fast dry it to save drying time.

#13: Top Coating:
Apply anilineTop54S™ - satin sheen evenly 1500 grit sanding in between coats to build up the sheen minimum 3 coats.
Note: This top coat is tinted with the anilineDye21™ 1 drop to 10 gm.

#14: After the Top Coat:
The right side shows work accomplished.

#15: Creating the original wax pull-up effect:
The bottom left shows the new pull-up effect without the cracks when stretch.
You will have fun punching off your frustration to create a work of beauty to enhance the mellow and rich wax effect.

#16: Non-stick draggy feel with a classic leather scent that charm:
leatherScent’D™ is highly recommended for routine or periodic maintenance to reduces fingernails scratches too!

Questions are welcome!

Roger Koh

02-19-2009, 06:51 PM
We have started preparing the sofa for dye.

It looks like a dog may have had a favorite spot on the sofa, so we did quite a bit of degreasing.

We also have softened the leather with relaxer.

Soon we will be ready to dye but still are waiting for you to ship the dye.

Any word on when it will be ready?

Roger Koh
02-27-2009, 11:33 PM
Referring to #13: Top Coating:

When you experience too much dripping or streaks, simply just foam brush it!

In fact is more effective, faster and easier than spray.

Make sure to sand between dry coat to achieve smoothness of feel.

Roger Koh

04-07-2009, 10:17 AM




05-07-2009, 12:50 PM
I learned alot from this job.

It is the first one using Leather Doctor's Aniline Dye.

I liked how well it penetrated the leather.

Due to the amount of damage, I wish I would have used some semi aniline to conceal areas that didn't look as well after dying as I wanted them to.

Namely the seat cushions, which had many years of dirt and oil (from a dog, I think).

We scrubbed so much, I worry we damaged the surface.

How do you remove that level of soil without damaging the surface?

Roger Koh
05-07-2009, 03:44 PM
Prep Cleaning:

Prep cleaning is a total removal of foreign contamination from the leather surface and structure (off the surface and from the structure) with standard system d’Oil4.4 > clean3.8 > rinse3.0.

However stains have to be properly identified and work with appropriate stain remover system.

As most aniline leathers are absorbent most worn surface stains are penetrated.

Again depends on the depth of penetration, most head oils are through to the reverse side and majority can be safely removed from the reverse suede side.

Seat cushion with dogs in this case, most darkening stains if any are from saliva or blood.

These stains require d’Protein11.0 or d’Blood9.9 > d’Tarnish1.3 to remove them effectively without physical scrubbing that may damage surface grains.

Remember all protein stains gels with leather fibers, it is these alkaline products that will swell them (penetrate, lubricate and suspend) the stains to be extracted.

The depth of the stains needs a wicking process to bring them up - saturating with relaxer3.3 opens up the fiber so that these dislodge particles has a chance to float out.

Aniline leathers being absorbent can take up large percentage of moisture that’s how we want to exploit this capacity to absorb and release colloid foreign contamination without draining out its important constituents of preservatives, tanning agents, fatliquors, and dyestuff with leather-safe products (pH 3-5).

No matter how you remove the excess moisture by stretching, compressing, squeezing or vacuuming the leather at this stage still contains about 60% moisture.

This about 60% of moisture leaves the leather surface by the wicking process.

Sometimes the leather has to be rewet with rinse3.0 to allow 2 or 3 wicking process to completely remove the foreign colloids.

The bottom line for safe and effective leather cleaning depends on understanding how leather chemistry and physic works within the leather structure beyond our eyes can see.

Dry Prep:

A deteriorated topcoat retains a darkening effect when dry no matter how well you clean it - This darkens topcoat need to be shave-off with razor60.

Staking is necessary to stretch the leather to rid of the darkening effect once leather dries - Stake with stake70.

Find sanding is necessary - use 1500 sanding grit.

Grain Repairs:

When surface is damaged impregnator26 is recommended.

To reduce darkening effect each between coat need to be stake and stretched.

Aniline dyestuff is to enhance the natural beauty of the grain or to hide the ugly darkening effect due to grain damages, your choice!

We have three versions of Aniline Dyes to choose from:

1: aniPureDye21 - transparent “dye-in” (formerly anilineDye21 a change in the binder with a change in name).

2: anilineDye27 - transparent “dye-on”.

3: anilineColor25 - translucent “dye-on”.

Why three aniline version?

aniPureDye21 is a transparent aniline dyestuff that is design for penetrating superiority the way you like it: quote from above “I liked how well it penetrated the leather”.

anilineDye27 is a transparent aniline urethane dyestuff that is design with superior adhesion that bonds with existing top coat that is film forming with elasticity and stretch.

It is design for spray touch-up to even out shades that coat rather than penetrate the leather.

anilineColor25 is a translucent aniline urethane hybrid dyestuff that works similar with anilineDye27 with the difference in the hiding power.


Always Prep Clean and Dry Prep the worst areas before you can decide how the outcome to be:

1: Transparency = aniPureDye21 > anilineDye27

2: Translucency = anilineColor25 (This should be your dream product, quote from above “Due to the amount of damage, I wish I would have used some semi aniline to conceal areas that didn't look as well after dying as I wanted them to”).

3: Opacity = semiColor54 (No more an aniline look, better than pigColor64).

Roger Koh