Cutting board finish - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 Old 04-01-2007, 02:29 PM Thread Starter
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Cutting board finish

I made some cutting boards per Marc over at the wood whisperers directions. www.thewoodwhisperer.com They came out great but I am not happy with the finish. I do not have an adiquate finish room so I have some dust in the final coat. I used a salad bowl varnish, 1 soaking coat and 2 light coats. They have now cured for for several days and I was considering using a pumice/rottenstone to clean them up. The question that I have is that do I want to do this, It will leave a glassy finish that I would assume will easily scratch with use. My other thought was that I would knock it down with some 600 and apply a clear wax coat. What do you think????? any suggestions..

Visit my blog for pictures..... http://7kcraftsman.blogspot.com/


John
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post #2 of 14 Old 04-01-2007, 03:20 PM
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Cutting boards end up with a lot of cuts in them from using a knife. That's what they're made for.
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post #3 of 14 Old 04-01-2007, 04:23 PM Thread Starter
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obviously they get cuts in them. actual constructive answers would be much appreciated....

John
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post #4 of 14 Old 04-01-2007, 07:06 PM
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I use mineral oil on mine. Just the clear mineral oil you can buy at Walgreen's. I really don't know if varnish is food safe...

There's 'nuthin better than bare wood soaked in oil for a deep rich finish. I know there is some salad bowl finish that has some gloss to it, but it has petroleum products in it. The cuts and scratches will not look like defects, but will add to the character of the wood when finished in oil....

(in my opinion)
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post #5 of 14 Old 04-01-2007, 07:41 PM Thread Starter
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I agree

I have used normal mineral oil several times in the past. The boards I made are a little bit better than normal so I wanted a nicer finish and the varnish tends to make the wood pop a little more. I used nice rock maple mixed with a purple heart. check out my Blog for a picture of the unfinished product:
http://7kcraftsman.blogspot.com/2007...ng-boards.html

Certain varnishes are bad, but some are not. a mixture of mineral spirits and varnish from General finishes is safe once dry. It is called "salad bowl finish" link: http://www.woodcraft.com/family.aspx?familyid=752

The question I am asking is not what to use but how to complete the finish I already have. I guess I am just going to let it roll for now and see how it holds up. I do not have a thick coat of varnish since I only sealed the board, however it is pretty glossy and has some dust and other foriegn objects in it that i would like to remove. I think I am going to lightly knock one down with 600 and wax it to see what the results are.......

Or maybe I will just leave the finish and allow normal wear and tear and see what happens

John

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post #6 of 14 Old 04-01-2007, 11:28 PM
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Hi John,
Nanu-Nanu

You could try WipeOn Poly by Minwax. either gloss or satin. I prefer the satin as it makes the timber look less like plastic.
After oiling, sand to 600 grit, pref with a Random Orbital Sander. Then wipe on with a cotton cloth and let dry (usually about 2-4 hours). Go over the piece with a second coat and let dry overnight to give extra resilience and bonding between coats. If you've got pads at about 1500-2000g, use gently now to remove any irregularities, then give the board a final coat. Looks great, very durable and food safe.

Regards,


Orson
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post #7 of 14 Old 04-02-2007, 08:13 AM
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A woodturner told me last week his "secret" to getting a good looking finish on plates and platters is using regular corn oil. He was using the word "secret" TIC so it's okay to pass it along.
plates and platters are end grain, although I cannot tell from your picture whether you used end or long grain for your board.

It sounds like you are seeking a high gloss finish and I don't think you'll get a really high gloss finish with oils, which is really what a cutting board needs.
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post #8 of 14 Old 04-02-2007, 08:52 AM
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I have found that oil like corn oil or veg. oil will turn rancid. That's why I use mineral oil....Just a thought...
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post #9 of 14 Old 04-02-2007, 09:09 AM
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Thanks Steve. Just goes to show that repeating something without experience can be dangerous.
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post #10 of 14 Old 04-02-2007, 11:40 AM Thread Starter
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end grain

They are end grain..... I do like oils and I useually use mineral oil but I decided to try varnish after reading an artical by Marc Spagnuolo over at www.thewoodwhisperer.com

I did not apply it like you would a standard finish, just seal it. There is not a thick coat but there is a glossy coat. It is supposed to be more durable and a much better longer lasting finish.

I did the old, let other people decide test.... I left them out in my house and asked people what they thought, especially about the finish ad they all thought it looked great, so... I am going to leave it and stop over analyzing......

John
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post #11 of 14 Old 04-02-2007, 11:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnrezz View Post
I am going to leave it and stop over analyzing......

John
And I thought I was the only one who did that....
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post #12 of 14 Old 04-02-2007, 03:06 PM Thread Starter
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Copleted project

Thanks for all the advice and discussion. Here is the completed product before I go and chop it up..... http://7kcraftsman.blogspot.com/2007...ing-board.html

I will get back to you after some use to let you know how I feel about varnish vs mineral oil....

John
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post #13 of 14 Old 04-11-2007, 08:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Burlkraft View Post
I use mineral oil on mine. Just the clear mineral oil you can buy at Walgreen's. I really don't know if varnish is food safe...

There's 'nuthin better than bare wood soaked in oil for a deep rich finish. I know there is some salad bowl finish that has some gloss to it, but it has petroleum products in it. The cuts and scratches will not look like defects, but will add to the character of the wood when finished in oil....

(in my opinion)
Not to mention, if the bare wood is really smooth before you put an oil coat on it, it's really really slick afterwards, and you just have to run your fingers over the wood every once in a while because it's a nifty sensation.
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post #14 of 14 Old 04-15-2007, 01:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnrezz View Post
I have used normal mineral oil several times in the past. The boards I made are a little bit better than normal so I wanted a nicer finish and the varnish tends to make the wood pop a little more. I used nice rock maple mixed with a purple heart.....
John

If it aint broke, why FIX it? :) :) :D

Mineral oil is the best way to finish a cutting board... using varnish, IMHO, is just asking for trouble.
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