Questions tagged [varnish]

A film finish which hardens or cures to form a protective layer. Polyurethane, lacquer, and shellac are some examples of common types of varnish.

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28
votes
6answers
122k 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'...
12
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 ...
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-...
11
votes
4answers
34k 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 ...
14
votes
2answers
716 views

How do I properly care for my paintbrushes?

I have been diligently cleaning my paintbrushes after use by rinsing them in the recommended solvent (in this case mineral turpentine). Nonetheless, this last time my paintbrush hardened into a solid ...
15
votes
2answers
38k 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 ...
14
votes
2answers
51k views

Which solvents can be stored in which plastics? — is there an organic chemist in the house?

Now that coffee cans, and even larger glass bottles, are becoming hard to find, my workshop's pile of containers is mostly plastic. This has me wondering/worrying about which plastics might be ...
37
votes
4answers
38k 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 ...
12
votes
2answers
904 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 ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Protecting wooden plant pot from water damage

I am building a large container for plants, made of pine. Considering that the inside will be in direct permanent contact with moist earth, what is an appropriate treatment to prevent wood ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

Salvaging Failed Spar Varnish/Danish Oil Finishing Layers on Redwood Live-Edge Slab

This question is a follow-up/continuation to another SO question of mine with added detail and hopefully a better explanation of my approach and current state of the board. The state of the wood slab ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

Finishing/Buffing/Polishing Redwood Slab with Oil-based Varnish thinned with Danish Oil

I have a 3x5 ft Redwood slab with 1 coat of varnish/danish oil (50/50) mixture and 1 coat (last applied) of just varnish. I applied fairly thick coats for both layers. The varnish The Danish oil I ...