During the interim of working on the actual machine--I have also been working on the cabinet. It appears to have some kind of varnish/lacquer finish over the original wood finish. It is much darker than the orginal--which you can see when you open the cabinet. I would like to take the darker finish off, but am worried about somehow messing it up altogether. Below are some pics to show you the difference in the finishes, including the last picture of the varnish on the side of a drawer. These pictures are AFTER using Murphy's Oil Soap and Old English Scratch Remover for dark woods. I have two more finish steps to go. I am hoping that when I use the Howard's Restore-A-Finish with steel wool that it might break up some of the old finish. I'm just not sure what it will do.
The photo below is after opening the top. You can see the difference in finishes.
I would appreciate any ideas for comments about whether to pursue stripping the outside of it or leaving well enough alone. I am not sure what to do. What would you do about it?