refinishing wooden computer desk
Hello - I am helping a friend strip down a computer desk that was damaged by dampness due to a mouse pad. When I started I used "pro stipper" to remove the existing finish and stain. The next step I sanded the desk with 180 fine sand paper. The desk was sanded and the wiped off. Then I started to stain with Minwax, red mahagony stain. Two coats were applied. At least 24 hrs. were allowed before I started to apply the finish. I then used minwax helmsman spar urethane with a china brissle brush. I noticed after putting on a thin coat, it was not taking and there was slight streaking, but wasn't concerned. Waited 24 hrs. and lightly sanded and repeated the step. Again, the same things were happening. Same with the third coat. At this point the table looks OK, but not great. I am really not pleased. Looks almost splotchy. Should I use different materials? A sponge brush vs. the china brissle? What has caused the varnish not to seem to take in some places? Please give me your imput on this matter. I really would like to finish this project and move on. I'm sure he would like to use his desk again as well. Thank you in advance for your time in this matter. I really am at a loss.