Questions tagged [finishing]

Finishing a woodworking project refers to the final steps to beautify and protect it.

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10
votes
3answers
36k views

how to fix very light scratches in polyurethane finish?

I just got a nice new wooden table, and, being completely clueless about wood, scrubbed it with the rougher side of a dish sponge because it had some weird rough spots on the surface. Now it's ...
17
votes
4answers
14k views

What are the differences between sanding and scraping?

How do both techniques compare? In terms of result, cost, applicability to different kinds of wood, different shapes of work pieces and cleanliness of process. I always used sandpaper to get a smooth ...
28
votes
6answers
127k views

How do I achieve a "piano black" high gloss finish on wood?

I'm building some speaker cabinets for my living room out of MDF. I'm wondering how to achieve that "high gloss" / "piano black" look, like on B&W speakers or, well, black pianos... Any ideas? I'...
19
votes
8answers
20k views

What is the difference between "curing" and "drying"?

When learning about different finishes, some resources talk about the finish's drying time, such as this Zinsser Shellac. The shellac dries to the touch in 15 minutes and can be re-coated in 45 ...
13
votes
1answer
2k views

Leveling a finish/finishing the finish

I'm using Emmet's Good Stuff (poly gel varnish that you wipe on) as a finish on a walnut slab. I've read a lot about finishing online, but am a little confused about "leveling the finish." As I ...
18
votes
2answers
178k views

Can I apply water-based polyurethane over an oil based stain?

I recently finished a dresser top in a very light gray oil based stain. Afterwards I applied a water based matte poly, because I didn't want any yellow tint to show on the light gray color (see this ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Protecting against water damage

I am using an Ash slab for bathroom vanity top, what is best for sealing and protecting wood from water. Thank you
9
votes
1answer
7k views

What finish is suitable for a childrens toy?

I'm designing a children's toy and I need it to have a non toxic, water resistant finish that can withstand being put in mouths, being thrown around and that is easy to clean.
10
votes
3answers
44k views

How do I de-nib polyurethane after it dries but still maintain its finish?

Sometimes when I apply polyurethane, for whatever reason, it's not completely smooth. Maybe a brush mark here and there, or a couple little nibs, etc. The advice I see often is to sand the area ...
19
votes
4answers
20k views

At what stage of basic furniture making should I "finish" the wood?

I have purchased wood in order to make some basic furniture: One of these will be placed outside (simple table), One inside the bathroom, (basic chest of drawers) And another in the hall way (shoe ...
13
votes
2answers
21k views

Should I finish before, during, or after assembly? [duplicate]

I'm building some pretty basic bookshelves. I intend to assemble them with glue. I also intend to sand them, apply stain, shellac, and polyurethane. Should I: Dry fit, glue, sand, finish? Or dry fit, ...
7
votes
4answers
77k views

What are the techniques to seal or remove sap?

For starters this is not green-wood. I have been cutting up some 2x4 into small blocks for painting and decoration. The block were cut and then sanded. About 3 days later I had the time to paint them....
5
votes
1answer
632 views

Are Oil finishing and Oil polishing complementary?

There seems to exist two different procedures to finish wood with vegetal penetrating oils (raw linseed oil, boiled linseed oil, or pure tung oil). One method consists in letting the oil penetrate ...
12
votes
2answers
503 views

Choosing wood and finish for outdoor furniture

What qualities should I look for in woods to be used in outdoor furniture and what are some examples of woods which have those qualities? What finishing options do I have for weatherproofing wooden ...
8
votes
5answers
400 views

I polyed my paintbrush then procrastination left me in a predicament

I was using a nice paintbrush with polyurethane and it seems that I set it down then forgot to clean it. I have since run into it and I have a shiny, relativity tough, paintbrush now. Needless to say ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the difference between wiping polyurethane and wiping varnish?

I make my own wiping polyurethane by thinning regular oil-based poly from home improvement stores with mineral spirits. According to Bob Flexner, the only difference between this and polyurethane-...
10
votes
4answers
3k views

What is a good finish for shot glasses?

I recently got a lathe and playing around with it I've made some cups roughly the size of a shot glass. My cousin immediately wanted to buy them off me. I haven't found any information that seems ...
6
votes
3answers
381 views

What would be considered the strongest finish?

I am looking for the strongest finish for a project with the following specifications. I prioritize scratch and wear resistance, but also want sun and water resistance along with adjustments to ...
26
votes
6answers
68k views

How long does it take tung oil to cure?

Depending on what you're reading, tung oil cures in a day I use Minwax tung oil on all my turningings. Two Coats ussually. After the second coat, I buff with the Beall Buffing system, Ussually ...
3
votes
1answer
3k views

What is the best way to get a high gloss glass-like white finish? [duplicate]

What is the best way to achieve this High-Gloss White Glass Finish with wood?
9
votes
3answers
5k views

Is all fine grit count sandpaper called wet/dry?

I need to start getting into sharpening and honing so naturally one of the ways I could go would be to get some sandpaper in the 500 + grit count range. (That decision is based off a great video I saw ...
7
votes
2answers
25k views

How can I prevent outdoor cedar projects from losing their color?

I love the look of natural cedar for outdoor projects. I built a small garden fence a few years ago, and made the mistake of leaving it unfinished. It's completely gray/silver now. I'm planning on ...
2
votes
1answer
906 views

how can I make a cedar tree round into an outdoor table? [closed]

How can I turn a large western cedar tree round into a low table? I now have a large western cedar tree round. It's from a 100-ish year old cedar tree that a neighbor cut down. My wife would like ...
13
votes
4answers
40k views

Finishing a desk or tabletop?

I am wanting to make my own computer desk and I am not sure in the steps I need to take to finish it in regards to oiling and applying something like polyurethane which seems to be used in all the ...
8
votes
2answers
7k views

Is Danish Oil redundant to Polyurethane?

Is Danish Oil redundant to Polyurethane, or do both finishing agents provide complementary qualities?
14
votes
5answers
39k views

Making wood filler from sawdust

The piece I am currently working on does not need to be perfect in any way, I am actually going for a slightly rough look (due to many mistakes along the way) but I would like to hide some of the ...
12
votes
2answers
55k views

Can I apply polyurethane over oil before oil cures?

Specifically I am wondering about polyurethane (Rustoleum Ultimate) over boiled linseed oil, but in general polyurethane or other top coats with similar chemistry over any drying oil. Question is: ...
8
votes
7answers
20k views

How to finish a piece to bring out its colour

I have some pallet wood that I think is Kempas. Before I started to clean, cut and sand it the wood had a nice orange brown colour. After cleaning and sanding much of that colour was gone. I want ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

How can I keep a cedar tree round from checking?

I want to turn a large western cedar tree round into a low table for a covered outdoor area. My tree round is from a 100-ish year old western cedar tree that a neighbor recently cut down. It's big,...
9
votes
2answers
679 views

How to can I repair/mitigate rot in the center of a Western Cedar tree round?

I want to turn a large western cedar tree round into a low table for a covered outdoor area. The round is from a 100-ish year old cedar tree. It was freshly cut (one month ago), is roughly 4 feet ...
7
votes
1answer
149 views

Why is there a progressive reduction in oil for finish/maintenance? Is it necessary?

For oil finishes, such as tung or linseed, it's common to see advice where you apply multiple coats early on, then fewer and fewer coats progressively. For example, a common adage is: "Once a day for ...
6
votes
4answers
14k views

Shellac over paint, outdoors

I am making something for outdoor use and I've painted it with a matte exterior latex paint. I'm satisfied with the protection that the paint will offer but I'm experimenting with ways to make it look ...
6
votes
2answers
350 views

How long after cutting wood can I wait to glue?

I am building a dining room table and it has taken me several months to cut all the pieces. Will the glue have any problems sticking to the edges that have been jointed/cut several months ago? I am ...
5
votes
1answer
17k views

Applying oils over stains

As we learned from Can I apply water-based polyurethane over an oil based stain? it is possible to do just that under certain conditions. I would like to broaden that question if possible. Finishing ...
2
votes
1answer
118 views

Identifying Paint Type on Finished Furniture

I recently acquired a wooden table with a high-gloss painted surface. In moving it, I scratched one edge. I am hoping to repair the damage (hopefully without repainting the whole table) and then ...
2
votes
1answer
202 views

Most durable foodsafe finish to highlight chatoyancy

My favorite lumberyard (where I get most of my bowl blanks) specializes in curly/fiddleback/birdseye maple, all of which I love for their holographic/chatoyant qualities. Because I'm a beginner, I've ...
15
votes
2answers
39k views

Finishing schedule for live edge walnut slab

I'm working on a live edge walnut slab coffee table. This is a photo of the bottom side of the table before any finish is applied sanded to 220 (for reference the holes are for threaded inserts that ...
18
votes
14answers
123k views

How can I achieve a raw, unfinished look to my project while protecting it from water and physical abuse?

I am creating an oak table top that will undoubtedly be exposed to a certain level of physical abuse (e.g., plates sliding across the surface) and water (e.g., glasses placed without a coaster, spills)...
10
votes
3answers
22k views

How do I treat MDF?

I recently bought a workbench with a 900x1500x12mm MDF top and it doesn't appear to be sealed. What should I apply to seal the edges from leaking and seal the top from absorbing? Indoor use, subject ...
38
votes
4answers
40k views

What's the purpose of raising the grain before finishing a furniture piece?

I'm currently working on a entry bench in black walnut. I'm wondering if I should raise the grain before finishing my bench or not. In the past, I haven't done so. I've heard that it's better to ...
10
votes
1answer
4k views

Applying shellac in high humidity

I applied a coat of dewaxed shellac (Bulls Eye) as a first coat on some poplar. I then noticed that the can said do not apply if humidity exceeds 85%. I live in a generally humid area. Today is a ...
8
votes
3answers
9k views

What kind of finish should I use inside dresser drawers?

I'm building a chest of drawers out of reclaimed barn wood. For the drawers I've used 1/2" sanded ply for the sides and 1/4" for the bottoms. They're pretty darn smooth but I'd like to put a clear ...
16
votes
6answers
111k views

Should I use sandpaper or Steel Wool between coats of polyurethane?

Polyurethane is typically my go-to finish, but I'd always just kind of done it how dad showed me rather than reading the instructions, sanding with fine grain between coats, or not at all if it's ...
9
votes
5answers
13k views

How to finish a branch to keep the bark (partially) on?

My son found a nice thick branch that I want to turn into a walking stick for him. Unfortunately, I can't tell what kind of wood it is exactly. The bark is still partially on and doesn't seem loose. ...
8
votes
2answers
17k views

How can I reduce the gloss of a varnished piece of furniture?

I have a piece of furniture with a glossy varnish finish. I like the existing color and grain pattern, but I would prefer it to be a matte finish. How can I accomplish this? Does rubbing out varnish ...
6
votes
1answer
137 views

A woodwork plan software that I can export sizing chart?

I am new to woodworking, and I am using Sketchup. I wonder if there is a woodwork plan software that I can export sizing chart after I have my design finished, so I can just follow it not list it on ...
4
votes
1answer
7k views

Finishing a beech desk top (Ikea Gerton), suitability of tung oil

I recently made a desk using a Gerton beech wood top from Ikea. Ikea recommends using their Behandla finishing oil in the instructions included with the top. I am a bit skeptical of this finish, ...
12
votes
2answers
967 views

Evening reflectivity of a finish after "finishing the finish"

I recently installed butcher block countertops in my kitchen. Several weeks ago, I put four coats of varnish on them, but (as always) they ended up with dust nibs. So yesterday, I wet sanded with 400 ...
11
votes
2answers
300 views

Making fake/pseudo plugs or caps

Gifted amateur working with variety of different woods like pine,oak and something from Indonesia that I haven't typed yet. If one needs to use caps or plugs for recessed screw/nails you would just go ...
9
votes
1answer
130 views

Can low durability be mitigated with specific finishes?

I'm looking to build some outdoor furniture and I happen to have a lot of hard maple on-hand. While I also have a bit of cedar, I dislike how easily it scratches and dents. When reading up on ...