How are the speakers finished? A black piano finish would be done differently than a wood finish, or marble.
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You will have to find out what the original speakers were coated with. I.E., you can not put polyurethane over laquer. If I recall, the old AR's were oiled and not coated. If this is the case, I would re-oil with a tung oil. It will look hand-rubbed and show lot of depth, and be very durable. Keep the oil off of the speaker cones. First, you need to find out how they were coated in the first place. Try the owners manual or get on AudioAsylum.