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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone -
I purchased a "live edge" black walnut table less than a year ago direct from its builder - I was told at the time the table top received 3 coats of tung oil, and I should "probably consider applying more, closer to 10+" (The table wasn't expensive, so I didn't complain that the person who built it admitted that the delivered product wasn't totally finished).

In the end I didn't end up applying more immediately, as it was too cold to leave the windows of our place open, and my wife was concerned about the smell the tung oil would give off in a sealed-in house (no central air). Now that the humidity has died down and its still hot outside I would like to get down to applying those extra coats. The only problem is a few circular water marks are now on the table (I assume from putting hot plates or glasses on the table):



So, two questions:
1) Does anyone have any advice regarding how to get rid of the watermarks before I apply the new coats of tung oil?
2) Is there an issue with laying polymerized tung oil over a natural tung oil finish? My concern with natural tung is I hear it takes very long to cure, meaning it could take weeks to apply 8-10 layers properly.

Thanks!
 

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The big problem with tung oil is a lot of it isn't. Some tung oil finish is more linseed oil than anything and may not have any tung oil in it at all. 100% tung oil is waterproof and would not waterspot like that. You can put the polymerized tung oil over the top of what you have. I would wash the table down with lacquer thinner and sand it a little with 220 grit sandpaper first. If you have ten coats of oil/varnish finish on it, it might get a bit messy like using paint stripper but you should be able to get the excess of the surface which contains the water spot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)

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I can't watch the video with my internet. From the still picture it looks like it is a varnish or lacquer finish rather than a oil finish. I don't think the iron would help you. Even with a varnish I think there is a greater chance of damaging the finish with the iron. What you have has more or less removed the tung oil finish where it has been wet. I think it best to remove as much of the old tung oil finish as you can before putting the good stuff on it. One thing I neglected to note working with real tung oil you need a lot of patience. It might take weeks for a coat of it to dry before applying another coat. The way to tell if a coat of tung oil is dry is to briskly rub the surface with a clean cloth and see if the tung oil smell rubs off on the rag. When there is no smell the coat is dry. This doesn't mean you can use the table during this time. Just try to keep any oils or furniture polish away from the table until you get the table where you want it. When it comes time to recoat just scuff sand between coats with 220 grit paper like any finish.
 

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The issue I have found with the steam is it can actually do more damage on some finishes ,I have used a dry iron with a cloth dampened with some BLO , and simply warm it up .

If however you just want to be done, wipe a thin coat of denatured alcohol on the surface , do not puddle, just a very thin wipe , then light it, it will burn off very fast, and it burns above the surface, the spots will just vanish, works really fast and effective. It isnt as drastic as it sounds.
 
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