I have my refinished enclosure back. I asked the carpenter to take photos along the way and give a few details.
Sanding was done with a festool Rotex detail sander with the sponge attachment. Worked up from 100 to 120 to 150 to 180 grit.
The finish that was on there was done well and was substantial. Once the wood was sanded to a degree which I thought most of the previous finish was removed I wet the case with a cloth. As the wood dries differences not before apparent appear. The sanding process took longer than anticipated because of the good quality finish that was applied and the great care needed to not change the shape of the case. Great care must be taken to keep the sander moving at all times and not square off the contours, of which there are many.
An orbital sander is a must to avoid cross grain scratching. Not recommended for first time sanders/woodworkers.
The finish applied was 2 coats of black India ink buffed with 0000 steel wool after the first coat. Then 3 coats of wipe on poly by minwax. Light sanding between clear coats.
Expect to spend about 4 hrs. Not including dry time between the various finish coats.
This one shows one sanded and one untouched:
Examples of where getting the wood a little wet makes areas to keep sanding more apparent:
Closeups of getting around the countours:
There’s one area on the left half which isn’t quite the same and which you may spot above, and here’s a closeup:
When I picked it up he mentioned something about the wood in that spot being a little different somehow (the details escape me) in such a way that the ink didn’t set the same. There also seems to be a little gouge there so I’m not sure if there was also a small mishap while sanding that spot, or if it was there before, only filled in by the original finish. Either way, it doesn’t bother me.
The clear coat is not as silky and smooth as it was before, which is a bit of a shame. This is something I’d be interested in trying to improve, but the way that he described the original finish above (“done well and was substantial”) makes me think I wouldn’t be able to do a good job.