I know that linseed oil and water-based polyurethane won't work together. But I have 1/2" poplar paneling that I am installing in my van and am hoping to get the best of both synthetic and natural properties. I like that the linseed oil soaks into the wood and would help prevent splitting on hot days however it turns the wood more yellow than we'd like. On the other hand, I heard that water-based polyurethane would keep the wood with the most natural look keeping it mostly white bright, although it might not prevent the wood from splitting as well as linseed oil.
I already applied a coat of linseed to one side of a few of the boards and looking at the ends, it looks like it penetrated halfway through the next morning. i was thinking what if I applied linseed oil to the back of each board (they are 1' x 4 ft vertical panels) and applied water-based polyurethane to the front facing inside of the van - could I get the best of both worlds????
Let me know what you think!