Question About Mineral Oil Finishing - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 16 Old 02-19-2016, 02:48 PM Thread Starter
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Question About Mineral Oil Finishing

Hello everyone!

I'm a new member to this forum. I've had a problem that I haven't been able to come up with a good solution for yet.

I make a lot of parts on the CNC. Most of these parts are essentially 3/4" plywood sheets with various pockets machined out of them.

I need to use a food-safe finish for these parts. I have been using a mineral oil/bee's wax mixture that looks nice.

Here's the issue:
The finishing part of the process is very labor intensive. It takes a lot of work to apply oil to all of the surfaces and inside pockets, etc.

I need to use a paint brush to get into all of the nooks and crannies. On top of that, it takes equally as long to remove every bit of the excess oil.

My question:
Is there a better method for this type of job? Or, is there a drying oil that would get rid of the need to spend time removing every last bit of mineral oil on the parts?

Thank you for your time!
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post #2 of 16 Old 02-19-2016, 03:14 PM
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When it comes to food-safe finishes you're pretty limited. Mineral oil is one, beeswax another, and shellac is the only other one I know of.

Why does it need to be a food safe finish though? I doubt the plywood is food safe to begin with...

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post #3 of 16 Old 02-19-2016, 03:32 PM Thread Starter
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It's a bamboo plywood. I've been told by the manufacturer that it's food-safe. I would hope that they're being truthful with me.
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post #4 of 16 Old 02-19-2016, 04:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick90Spartan View Post
It's a bamboo plywood. I've been told by the manufacturer that it's food-safe. I would hope that they're being truthful with me.
What are the items? Do you have pictures?

Since the mid 1970's all finishes sold in the US are required to be non-toxic when fully cured.

Howie..........
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post #5 of 16 Old 02-19-2016, 04:57 PM
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Here is an article by Bob Flexnerhttp://www.woodcentral.com/articles/finishing/articles_497a.shtml On that subject
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post #6 of 16 Old 02-19-2016, 08:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick90Spartan View Post
It's a bamboo plywood. I've been told by the manufacturer that it's food-safe. I would hope that they're being truthful with me.
I wouldn't imagine that the manufacturer would lie about that, I just thought you were using garden variety plywood from the local home center.

Does bamboo even need to be finished? I thought it was pretty everything-proof as is

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post #7 of 16 Old 02-19-2016, 08:37 PM Thread Starter
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The finish is almost entirely for looks. Makes the wood much darker and much more attractive. It also provides a visual contrast for the pockets with grain going the opposite direction.

I would like to keep the food-safe designation mainly for marketing purposes.

I guess the main question was if anyone has experience with this type of finishing process. It's taking me far too long per part.
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post #8 of 16 Old 02-19-2016, 08:43 PM Thread Starter
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What are the items? Do you have pictures?

Since the mid 1970's all finishes sold in the US are required to be non-toxic when fully cured.
I own a small company that makes smoking accessories.

I have read that before (about all finishes being non-toxic when cured.) Something other than mineral oil may be more appropriate. I should have already tested out several more.

Ideally, customers would be able to clean/refinish products themselves (with a kit) to remove scratches and plant residue. That's one of the reasons I wanted to stick with mineral oil. That may not be the best route to take though.
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post #9 of 16 Old 02-20-2016, 02:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick90Spartan View Post
The finish is almost entirely for looks. Makes the wood much darker and much more attractive. It also provides a visual contrast for the pockets with grain going the opposite direction.

I would like to keep the food-safe designation mainly for marketing purposes.

I guess the main question was if anyone has experience with this type of finishing process. It's taking me far too long per part.
Unless people are eating off it i wouldnt stress about keeping it food-safe. Sure, it looks good on the marketing stuff, but id wager most people are looking at it and thinking "why the merry devil does a step stool need to be food safe?". In this scenario youre making step-stools, i still have no idea what youre actually making.

Anyway, id look into spraying shellac. Its food safe, easy to apply and looks good. Alternately, you could try spraying on the mineral oil instead if brushing. Youd still have to wipe off the excess, but the application would be quicker

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post #10 of 16 Old 02-20-2016, 04:50 AM
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Probably not, because you don't want your dog to eat your furniture. lol
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post #11 of 16 Old 02-20-2016, 09:32 AM
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post #12 of 16 Old 02-21-2016, 01:46 PM Thread Starter
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The furniture finish from Vermont Natural Coatings looks like it could work very well for my parts! I will be ordering some to test out tomorrow.

Thank you for pointing that out to me.
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post #13 of 16 Old 02-22-2016, 08:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick90Spartan View Post
Hello everyone!

I'm a new member to this forum. I've had a problem that I haven't been able to come up with a good solution for yet.

I make a lot of parts on the CNC. Most of these parts are essentially 3/4" plywood sheets with various pockets machined out of them.

I need to use a food-safe finish for these parts. I have been using a mineral oil/bee's wax mixture that looks nice.

Here's the issue:
The finishing part of the process is very labor intensive. It takes a lot of work to apply oil to all of the surfaces and inside pockets, etc.

I need to use a paint brush to get into all of the nooks and crannies. On top of that, it takes equally as long to remove every bit of the excess oil.

My question:
Is there a better method for this type of job? Or, is there a drying oil that would get rid of the need to spend time removing every last bit of mineral oil on the parts?

Thank you for your time!
been watching this hoping for answers on the mineral oil. we have the same issue - a customer wants it on a small item/large qty. I was thinking of dipping the wood item in a tank of min oil/beeswax, then rack dry. have you tried that?
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post #14 of 16 Old 02-22-2016, 09:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick90Spartan View Post
The furniture finish from Vermont Natural Coatings looks like it could work very well for my parts! I will be ordering some to test out tomorrow.

Thank you for pointing that out to me.
Let us know how this works when you do your tests. It sounds pretty cool. I'm very interested in this.

Red

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post #15 of 16 Old 02-22-2016, 09:34 AM
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If you are selling 'growing pots' or something similar and you want the customer to finish/refinish by themselves and want water resistance, I would suggest sandpaper and aerosol can of spray lacquer. Lacquer was used on furniture and table tops for most of the 20th century and look how long they lasted.

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post #16 of 16 Old 02-22-2016, 01:12 PM
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do you have any experience with this? how is it applied, brush, rag, spray? thanks
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