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post #1 of 8 Old 06-13-2017, 04:38 PM Thread Starter
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Confused about staining/finishing on my project

Ahem,

I am working on making a very simple replacement table top for an antique sewing machine. I have used boiled linseed oil for previous projects because a friend who happens to be a woodworking professional told me that it was a really great finish for most woods. I am now attempting to determine my next steps with this table project, and after I char the grain with my torch I wanted to rub some linseed oil in. Problem is, I started reading online that BLO isn't really protective at all. I also read about pre-staining, which is an entirely new concept to me and just adds more confusion to the mix. When I rub BLO into my wood (which is pine, and I believe treated pine at that), what am I really doing? Just adding some color right? If I want to use this stuff on my table top, and have some form of protection, what materials do I really need to be able to do this? The wood has already been orbital sanded to a 220 grit, which I believe is pretty typical.
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post #2 of 8 Old 06-13-2017, 08:09 PM
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Linseed oil can be a finish. It's one of the hardening oils in varnish. It may be easy to apply but used by itself takes a lot of coats to offer protection. When you rub the wood with linseed oil the oil soaks into the pores of the wood and hardens. The difference between blo and varnish is varnish is thicker so some of it hardens on the surface making a film coating. With enough coats you could do that with blo.

The only time you use wood conditioner is on certain woods prone to blotch and use a wood stain. Pine is one of them. The surface of pine has hard and soft spots so without the conditioner the stain would go dark on the soft spots. A wood conditioner is a thin sealer the soft part of the wood absorbs more than the hard spots. This makes the surface more uniform so when you stain it the color is more uniform.
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post #3 of 8 Old 06-13-2017, 08:35 PM
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Either varnish or a (Wipe-on) polyurethane finish would be my suggestion. Charing the grain? That's certainly interesting, are you charing the entire piece or just "tiger striping" it? As far as pine goes, I don't really like pine... If I ever use pine (which isn't often) I always stain it as I don't like the colour of it personally but charing is certainly an interesting approach. I am now very intrigued in your process and am quite curious to see what this looks like. Are you by any chance willing to post a picture of it?

"Dreams are stronger than poison and seize more firmly than disease, once captured one can not escape. It's a real curse, but for adventurers who are dedicated to it, body and soul, people without dreams are more frightening than death" (Made in Abyss). The Twenty Seventeen anime of the year, it definitely deserves that award. It's a show you don't expect to throw you off as much as it does. It may be Moe but it's certainly not lighthearted, just the opposite.
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post #4 of 8 Old 06-15-2017, 09:38 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by WeebyWoodWorker View Post
Either varnish or a (Wipe-on) polyurethane finish would be my suggestion. Charing the grain? That's certainly interesting, are you charing the entire piece or just "tiger striping" it? As far as pine goes, I don't really like pine... If I ever use pine (which isn't often) I always stain it as I don't like the colour of it personally but charing is certainly an interesting approach. I am now very intrigued in your process and am quite curious to see what this looks like. Are you by any chance willing to post a picture of it?
http://imgur.com/a/5XH4W Here are the before and after pics of the charring process. One thing I ran into which I am not sure how to fix is, the wood itself got bent upwards on the sides when I did this. I think it happened because of the heat from the torch, which may have tightened the fibers on that side of the table. I have it clamped down flush at the moment but the second I remove the clamps its going to spring up again. Any tips on how I can fix this problem?
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post #5 of 8 Old 06-16-2017, 12:07 AM
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Originally Posted by chughes10 View Post
http://imgur.com/a/5XH4W Here are the before and after pics of the charring process. One thing I ran into which I am not sure how to fix is, the wood itself got bent upwards on the sides when I did this. I think it happened because of the heat from the torch, which may have tightened the fibers on that side of the table. I have it clamped down flush at the moment but the second I remove the clamps its going to spring up again. Any tips on how I can fix this problem?
So the charring was simply for aesthetics right? You could try wetting the wood before clamping it and then leaving it for a long long time. Normally when I get a warped piece I plan it down but seeing as your already done with your project that's not a good plan. I'm not really an expert at unbending wood so my suggestion is to search the internet I guess. Sorry I'm not mush help mate.

"Dreams are stronger than poison and seize more firmly than disease, once captured one can not escape. It's a real curse, but for adventurers who are dedicated to it, body and soul, people without dreams are more frightening than death" (Made in Abyss). The Twenty Seventeen anime of the year, it definitely deserves that award. It's a show you don't expect to throw you off as much as it does. It may be Moe but it's certainly not lighthearted, just the opposite.
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post #6 of 8 Old 06-28-2017, 03:41 PM Thread Starter
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So the charring was simply for aesthetics right? You could try wetting the wood before clamping it and then leaving it for a long long time. Normally when I get a warped piece I plan it down but seeing as your already done with your project that's not a good plan. I'm not really an expert at unbending wood so my suggestion is to search the internet I guess. Sorry I'm not mush help mate.
I might try getting a BLO soaked rag and leaving it on instead of wiping it off, I was told by a few people elsewhere that water/oil seems to be the best method to try and restore some of the straightness to the grain.
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post #7 of 8 Old 06-28-2017, 05:16 PM
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I have it clamped down flush at the moment but the second I remove the clamps its going to spring up again. Any tips on how I can fix this problem?
Try charring the other side? I would also do my experimenting on scrap wood instead of the actual top. Could save some heartache later. :smile3:
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post #8 of 8 Old 07-05-2017, 04:56 PM Thread Starter
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Try charring the other side? I would also do my experimenting on scrap wood instead of the actual top. Could save some heartache later. :smile3:
That is a thought I had, but what happened is I started gluing the outer trim to the board (which I didn't want to try charring, with how fragile it is), and then unclamped it and realized the bend I had created. I was thinking about taking some thin metal bars and attaching them to the underside to force the table to stay straight, but maybe I can delicately char the underside as well. Thanks for the help guys!
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