If I'm using a few coats of boiled linseed oil (BLO) followed by a few coats of polyurethane, what should the timing schedule be? For my specific use case, this will be a large butcher block tabletop in Sapele wood.
I'm looking to finish a large butcher block tabletop in Sapele wood that will be used for a writing/computer desk. According to the manufacturer of the butcher block (Hardwood Reflections), the wood "MUST be sealed or finished on all surfaces" immediately after opening the interior plastic wrap it comes in. According to them, this is to prevent the wood from drying and cracking. When I was first looking into it, it seemed to me that the manufacturer was specifically implying it needed to be oiled (they mention mineral oil repeatedly, but I definitely want to avoid that because this will be for a desk), but further reading on their site seems to indicate elsewhere that a poly would be fine (in a FAQ: "we highly recommend sealing within three (3) days of unpacking it with either a urethane or an oil finish"). With that in mind, here are all the wrinkles of my specific use-case that might actually wind up invalidating the original question and implying I'd be better off going in a different direction.
- I have about a month to devote to this project, with an hour or two every few days available. While I'm fine to put in a decent chunk of time, will I see a meaningful difference doing BLO followed by (oil-based) poly? Or will it not really make much of a difference in terms of look if I just jump right into using an oil-based poly? I know the BLO will impart a slight ambering, which is a slight plus for me, but not a huge deal.
- I know "drying" times vary based on environment -- this project will be taking place in May in Southern California, working in a garage, so pretty warm (80-90F) and fairly dry.
- Would there be a significant benefit doing this with tung oil instead of BLO? Like I said, I'm only slightly positive on the ambering, a lot of the reason I'm picking BLO is because it's easier to buy than tung oil and seems that it would cure faster.