Finish for curly cherry - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 01-01-2020, 10:08 PM Thread Starter
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Finish for curly cherry

Going to make a blanket chest and want to use curly cherry. I want it to age naturally and darken and no blotching. Would seal coat thinned or a pre stain conditioner then BLO (thinned or no?) and then an oil poly finish ( or a water based poly acrylic?) be good or would that blotch it? If not the boiled linseed, what oil if any?
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post #2 of 14 Old 01-02-2020, 11:02 AM
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I haven't had a problem with cherry blotching when finishing. I wouldn't use a water based poly on it. Cherry will age and darken regardless of the finish. If you want a soft natural look, Danish oil will work. If you want a hard finish, check into General Finishes line of products. I have always hadn't good results with their finishes. They have a wipe on oil based poly that is easy to use and looks great when done, just follow their directions. Our local Woodcraft store carries their stuff, but it seems available online.
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post #3 of 14 Old 01-02-2020, 11:39 AM Thread Starter
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I haven't had a problem with cherry blotching when finishing. I wouldn't use a water based poly on it. Cherry will age and darken regardless of the finish. If you want a soft natural look, Danish oil will work. If you want a hard finish, check into General Finishes line of products. I have always hadn't good results with their finishes. They have a wipe on oil based poly that is easy to use and looks great when done, just follow their directions. Our local Woodcraft store carries their stuff, but it seems available online.
Mike Hawkins
Do you just use the wipe on poly to finish it and let nature work? Or use BLO then finish with the poly? I have some dewaxed ruby shellac i though about using but not sure. I want to enhance the wood without blotching.
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post #4 of 14 Old 01-02-2020, 12:12 PM
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I used Danish oil light walnut and wax on this dresser. It is aging nicely.
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post #5 of 14 Old 01-02-2020, 03:59 PM Thread Starter
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That's looks great!

I think I'm just gonna go with a good top coat. Maybe some thinned shellac then top coat. Only other thing is Danish oil then top coat. I want it to turn deep red not brown

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post #6 of 14 Old 01-02-2020, 05:07 PM Thread Starter
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I think I'm just gonna go with a good top coat. Maybe some thinned shellac then top coat. Only other thing is Danish oil then top coat. I want it to turn deep red not brown
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post #7 of 14 Old 01-02-2020, 07:57 PM
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I would probably use shellac. It won't blotch cherry, is easy to work with. One of it's best attributes is the way in which it really pops the grain. It also does not have any UV blockers, which many modern finishes do have. UV blockers will stop, or slow that natural patina from light exposure. The finish can also be redone or touched up anytime you or the chests heirs choose. The only downside is shellac is not very resilient to water and chemicals, if that is an issue. I like to mix my own shellac as I need it so it is as fresh as possible. Post some pictures when done.
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post #8 of 14 Old 01-02-2020, 10:54 PM
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The only time I have trouble with blotching is when I used a pigmented stain. The wood of some species will absorb the stain unevenly.
Another finish I use is a homemade Danish oil made by mixing equal portions of BLO, spar varnish and mineral spirits. It is applied by wiping on like BLO and has some of the UV protection and moisture resistance of spar varnish. Tung oil can be substituted.
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post #9 of 14 Old 01-03-2020, 05:26 AM
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Cant say ive ever had this mythical blotching issue with a clear finish on cherry. I always hear everybody talking about it, never had it happen. Stain i can understand blotching, the pigment gets absorbed more into some areas making them look darker, but clear stains dont have any pigments. Only time ive come close to seeing a blotching effect has been finishing with something like linseed oil after the first wipe on, where some areas have absorbed the oil more readily than others. Course, thats solved by adding more oil

Tl:Dr version, unless youre staining your cherry, i wouldnt worry too much about blotching. Test your finish on scrap first, which you should always do anyways, but dont sweat it too much

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post #10 of 14 Old 01-03-2020, 10:31 AM Thread Starter
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What's your favorite way to finish curly cherry? Just a top coat or oil the top or oil only
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post #11 of 14 Old 01-03-2020, 07:44 PM
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Originally Posted by jdutton24 View Post
What's your favorite way to finish curly cherry? Just a top coat or oil the top or oil only
My go-to finish is shellac, so for cherry i usually use a light coat of linseed oil, just to bring out the grain pattern, then topcat with a fet coats of shellac. Cherry responds really well to oils, so i feel that the final look is better with some oil under the shellac. If you were wanting a stronger finish, something like an oil-based polyurethane would have the same effect with fewer steps d

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post #12 of 14 Old 01-04-2020, 02:29 PM
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I would use a oil finish and go over it with a coat or two of wax
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post #13 of 14 Old 01-05-2020, 09:19 AM Thread Starter
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You mean like an oil polyurethane or like danish oil then wax
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post #14 of 14 Old 01-05-2020, 08:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdutton24 View Post
Do you just use the wipe on poly to finish it and let nature work? Or use BLO then finish with the poly? I have some dewaxed ruby shellac i though about using but not sure. I want to enhance the wood without blotching.
Yes. Cherry will age on its own and to me, is a very pretty wood that needs no enhancement. I've never used BLO on cherry, or shellac.
Mike Hawkins
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