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I still consider myself an amateur wood worker, but as my skills have improved I am starting to focus more on finishing. I work primary with pine and do mostly crafty type projects, shelves, boxes etc...I am trying to perfect my technique with finishing but my knowledge is the byproduct of you tube videos and trial and error...lots of error. I use the minwax stain and wipe on polyurethane. Three (3) coats of wipe on poly equals one coat of brush on poly. I use a grey abrasive pad between each coat, I usually get six (6) coats. Here's where I get lost...I then use mineral oil and 400 grit wet/dry paper, mineral oil and 600 grit wet/dry paper, 800 grit wet/dry paper then I use a furniture wax to finish the product.

Am I not knocking off all the coats of poly with the 400/600/800 sanding? Am I doing this correctly? Have I been led astray by you tube?
 

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When I do any wet sanding I use water as a lubricant. I wouldn't want mineral oil on a project between coats of finish. Using 400 grit paper you are not taking off much finish unless you stay at it a long time. I normally use 220 paper between coats however I spray most finishes. When you put the first coat of finish on it makes the fibers of the wood stand up a little. All you need to do is sand the finish until it is smooth again. There is also probably a little lint from wiping the finish and maybe a little dust that gets into the finish adding a little roughness. At some point this is the majority of what you need to sand between coats. Save the finer paper until the last coat when you are hand rubbing the finish out. If you plan to use wax I would wait 30 days for the final finish to cure before using it. The chemicals in the wax might affect the finish damaging it. A better product for polyurethane would be a clearcoat safe polish made for a car.
 
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