Woodworking Talk banner

1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
620 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
So, as Ive been working Im becoming increasingly fascinated by finishes. Today I spent nearly all day tinkering with different ways of applying a lacquer mainly the type of cloth I use to apply it, should the lathe be spinning, how long it takes to dry, how to avoid globbing and streak lines etc. I know there are a million finishes out there but I thought it would be helpful to start a list of all of them. I'd love to hear detailed information on the finishes you all use, likes and dislikes of the finish, oddities or attributes you find significant, pros, cons, detailed information on application, drying time, and the effect of the finish, on the lathe or off, pictures of work with the finish applied. etc etc. Id like to try to compile a list so that there can be a reference point for other people and myself when considering properties of different finishes, their effects, ways to tweak it and so forth. Know this sounds time consuming but I think it will be totally awesome to get a thread like this started. Ive seen "What kind of finish should I use" threads before but they are largely lacking in detail and specifics. Honestly I like the idea so much I may even start a website devoted completely to finishing bowls, pens etc.So! lend me your knowledge fellow wood workers. How do you properly finish your work??? Im compiling all the information in a word doc as well so it can be emailed/ utilized for website material in the future. Thanks in advance for any responses! happy turnin,
Bond
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,801 Posts
Bond, let me start by saying I'm a bit wierd about my finishes. I don't like CA for pens, seems too plastic for me and I can't stand the fumes. I don't like laqcuer or poly's for the smell factor (although it's more I don't want to be breathing those fumes than the actual smell) and the drying time.

I like to finish all my work on the lathe, once I take it off the lathe I want to be finished with it. But most of what I turn is utilitarian and not really showy pieces. My finish of choice is Doctor's Woodshop shellac/walnut oil/carnuba wax finish. I use it almost exclusively these days. I like all Mike's (Doctor's Woodshop guy) products, plus he's very helpful if you have any questions.

Occasionally for bowl I will use several coats of walnut oil followed by carnuba wax, and even less frequently BLO and wax, alternating them for upwards of 10 coats each.

I also like shellac as a sanding sealer and also to help raise grain in a tearout to make it turn easier.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,257 Posts
I've played with a lot of finished over the years and still do but mostly I use Lacquer that I spray on and then buff and polish to a gloss. I like it for my hand mirrors because it's repairable. Each layer blends with the next so If I get a damaged mirror back I can fix it like new. Same goes for if I screw something up on the finish or it gets damaged while at a gallery or in handling.
Minwax wipe on poly I use because I have trouble spraying lacquer in the winter or on really rainy days. It also yellow woods less so I'll use it on pieces that need to look white. It takes a lot of coats to build up a gloss so I mostly use it for finishes that I want to look natural. I'll use 1 to 3 coats and then buff it out with 4/0 steel wool. The if it's too satin I rub on a coat of Johnson's paste wax and buff it up. If I want glossy then I put on 7 to 10 coats or so until it's built up enough. then I'll buff it out with the Beal system.
I use Mahoney's walnut oil on user bowls. I don't want those glossy. I sand to a higher grit than normal so it looks more glossy but doesn't have a thick finish.
Birchwood Casey's True oil is another handy finish. It does yellow the wood a lot so it's much better for dark woods. It builds very quick and is extremely easy to use. Just put on a layer. The next day sand it all off with 4/0 steel wool. What's left is filling the pores a little aat a time. Keep doing this every day. When you can't see the pores anymore you only need 2 more coats. It comes out extremely glossy and is almost fool proof.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
517 Posts
Only three types of finishes used in woodturning:

Penetrating (oil base) normally only satin finish

Film (hard film either oil or water based) Lacquer, Poly, Shellac, Varnish

Combinations of either of oil-varnish/poly, or wiping varnish

Have to pay attention to thinners & finish compatibility.

Keep an open mind no one finish works for every wood species.

Whatever sanding sequence you use make sure do not go to next higher grit until blemishes diminished. Sandpaper wears out so throw away when worn out.

While sanding sealers not necessary will speed up finish build on closed grain wood. They do not fill the pores on open grain wood. Many light coats of finish or filler needed on open grain wood.

Some water based products recommend wetting wood or using pre-conditioner before applying top coat.

Pay attention to manufacturers ideal temperature and humidity requirements and drying times and make adjustments for your current conditions. Dry to the touch does not mean a finish has cured to final hardness.

Do check out finish material safety data sheets before buying!
 

·
sawdust manufacturer
Joined
·
581 Posts
For turned pieces:

If'n I want it shiny, I usually use WOP...

For more subdued, "Doctor's" or an oil finish...

p
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
Top