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I am making a mantel from a piece of red cedar which has been cut flat on the bottom and top. I have scraped and removed the loose bark from the sides. I like the look of leaving some layers of of brown bark to give a brown color instead on removing all bark (white). Will those strips loosen w/ time?

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  • It's unfortunately impossible to say for sure. If they are currently well attached you could be lucky, but small areas of peeling or lifting of edges are always a possibility in the future. You could be lucky or not, and it's one reason bark is usually removed entirely from formal woodworking projects (different standard for rustic stuff, and outdoor projects).
    – Graphus
    Commented Mar 29, 2020 at 11:12
  • I have had luck (but not always) using an oil based wipe on poly. Soak the bark thoroughly. Commented Mar 29, 2020 at 21:49
  • @MonteGlover that may as well be an answer, since you have tried it with some success, and have a technique you can pass on.
    – user5572
    Commented Mar 30, 2020 at 13:42
  • You can soak it with super thin CA glue - this will strengthen it and it won't break off - but it may be hard to apply finish later (depending on finish of course). You can try it on a piece of scrap wood.
    – Jan Spurny
    Commented Mar 30, 2020 at 13:56
  • @JanSpurny have you tried this? If so, why not provide an Answer?
    – user5572
    Commented Mar 30, 2020 at 14:07

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