Finishing Mahogany Floora- First time homeowner


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Hi! 

In some desperate need of experienced opinions.  We are in process of buying new house and before we move in, we would like to refinish the floors.  I was hoping it was an easier wood to work with like oak so we would have more flexibility with look but turns out it mahogany.  So a high quality, last forever hardwood but with a look I am not fond of in its current state.  I am having some trouble understanding what this wood would look like in its sanded down, bare state.   And also what our options would be for staining.  Is this possible to go very dark like ebony?  I am guessing the blonde look is out of the question.   And since there are three species or finishes  of mahogany it seems in this floor, how would it look if we went all dark?   I dont want to replace with engineered hardwood as its seems like such a waste but I am struggling to find any photos of these types of wood floors being refinished in an aesthetic i like.   Any help would be great.  Thanks!

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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I would not assume that the color variation shown is from different mahogany species, but simply from different trees. Such variation is quite natural, and is why fine furniture makers attempt to use wood from a single tree when possible.

As for staining the mahogany, most of us would likely prefer its natural color and grain, but I hear that it accepts colorants fairly well. Making it dark should be simple, and the darker you go, the more even the color can be. Blonde is more difficult, requiring you to bleach the wood to remove existing natural color. 

Some of the other members, like @Tpt life or @Tom King have a lot of experience in the building trades. Perhaps they can chime in with more helpful info.

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This just brings up more questions. Is it a true hardwood floor or an engineerd product? A species like that is less common to see in a typical 3/4" tongue and grove product. The reason I ask is, can it even be refinished? If it's an engineered product and the veneer is thin, then probably not, and for sure not without a lot of skill.

Beings that you are looking to buy the house and don't own it get a flooring professional's opinion. Find a company that can do a free site visit and explain the situation and what you want and see if it's possible. In the region I live it is common to bring a professional in for a consult in addition to a house inspector.

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I am going to raise the question is it even mahogany?  Unless that floor was laid a hundred years ago I doubt that it is true (Honduran) mahogany, which has become hard to come by and quite expensive.  If it is a recently installed floor it could possibly be a mahogany veneer as Cestnut suggested, but most likely it's a mahogany substitute such as Khaya (aka African "mahogany").  I suggest Khaya because the floor in the picture has a lot of yellow tones which is not typical of true mahogany.  

This is something I posted a while back, the base piece is Honduran mahogany, but it's a build journal, so more info than you need.  If you want to see what unfinished Honduran mahogany looks like you see it in the early pictures, to see it coated with "clear" varnish flip to the end.  You see it has much darker and red-brown tones and the grain pattern is pretty tight and uniform.

https://www.woodtalkonline.com/topic/30672-“offering”/?do=findComment&comment=403700

 

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Late to the party, but the answer has been given. If that was sold a mahogany, it’s African. Lots of info out there related to Khaya. I like it where I have it...carved into animal shapes in Zim. 

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