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Furniture Finisher  What They Do

Just the Facts


Shapes, finishes, and refinishes damaged, worn, or used furniture or new high-grade furniture to specified color or finish.

This career is part of the Manufacturing cluster Maintenance, Installation and Repair pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Brushes, sprays, or hand-rubs finishing ingredients, such as paint, oil, stain, or wax, onto and into wood grain and applies lacquer or other sealers.
  • Fills and smooths cracks or depressions, removes marks and imperfections, and repairs broken parts, using plastic or wood putty, glue, nails, or screws.
  • Smooths, shapes, and touches up surfaces to prepare them for finishing, using sandpaper, pumice stones, steel wool, chisels, sanders, or grinders.
  • Removes accessories prior to finishing, and masks areas that should not be exposed to finishing processes or substances.
  • Removes old finishes and damaged or deteriorated parts, using hand tools, stripping tools, sandpaper, steel wool, abrasives, solvents, or dip baths.
  • Treats warped or stained surfaces to restore original contours and colors.
  • Selects appropriate finishing ingredients such as paint, stain, lacquer, shellac, or varnish, depending on factors such as wood hardness and surface type.
  • Mixes finish ingredients to obtain desired colors or shades.
  • Removes excess solvent, using cloths soaked in paint thinner.
  • Examines furniture to determine the extent of damage or deterioration, and to decide on the best method for repair or restoration.

Insider Info

Dig into the details and check out what people in this job have to say about their work.



Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Work in this occupation involves bending or twisting your body more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Exposed to conditions such as high voltage electricity, combustibles, explosives, and chemicals more than once a month
  • Sound and noise levels are loud and distracting
  • Work in this occupation involves making repetitive motions more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves standing more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves walking or running more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Identifying color and seeing differences in color, including shades and brightness
  • Using muscles repeatedly or over time without tiring
  • Seeing clearly at a distance
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person
  • Lifting, pushing, pulling, or carrying objects
  • Using abdominal and lower back muscles repeatedly or over time without tiring

Work Hours and Travel

  • Regular working hours and limited travel

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Finish Repair Worker --
  • Finisher --
  • Hand Sander --
  • Lacquer Sprayer --
  • Sander --
  • Sealer Sander --
  • Sprayer --
  • Stain Sprayer --
  • Stain Wiper --