I just picked up a load of reclaimed wood for a dining table. It's some kind of softwood (fir?) and is very rough with a lot of checks due to exposure to the elements. I plan on giving it a good sanding to get rid of the fuzzy UV damaged fibers, but don't want to take it down to an absolutely flat surface (if I did, how would I justify the $$$ I spent on reclaimed wood!
Anyways the boards are good and dry after sitting in a heated sunroom, and I'm now ready to begin filling in the worst of the checks to stabilize them, and more importantly, to make it possible to wipe the table clean.
So my question is, how do I fill the checks without ruining the surface of the boards with ugly epoxy splotches?
In most cases, I would just pour clear epoxy into the cracks and then plane off a ~1/8th inch layer of wood to yield a fresh clean surface...but that would defeat the purpose of using reclaimed wood in this particular case.
Conceptually, I am thinking of the following sequence...but given my past wood-finishing record, I know it's pretty likely to end in disaster!!!
1) Seal entire surface with SealCoat shellac
2. Dab a few more layers of SealCoat into the smaller cracks.
2) Pour epoxy into the wider cracks - doing my best to keep it from spilling.
3) Shave away any accidental epoxy spillage
4) ROS sand entire surface to take off the shellac and remove any soaked-in epoxy stains
5) Some kind of medium-brown stain and a flexable finish (Waterlox TrueTone colored tung oil looks ideal...but is expensive)
Here's a photo of one of the 10 inch wide boards.
Thanks for any advice!