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17 votes

Making wood filler from sawdust

I remember hearing a while ago that sawdust and wood glue can be used as a wood filler to fill in gaps and imperfections. Yes you can do this, but note that the term "sawdust" might be slightly ...
Graphus's user avatar
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16 votes

Finishing a desk or tabletop?

oiling and applying something like polyeurethane which seems to be used in all the youtube tutorials OK need to run though a number of basics first. Firstly a general caution, lots of people who ...
Graphus's user avatar
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14 votes

how to fix very light scratches in polyurethane finish?

You're going to have to make this look worse before it looks better. The first step is *gulp* to lightly sand or scuff the entire surface until the existing scratches aren't evident, and then do one ...
Graphus's user avatar
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11 votes

Why does my workpiece become rough again after applying polyurethane varnish when it wasn't before?

The bumpy feeling you describe is probably the wood grains raising up after applying your varnish; especially if it's a water based one. I previously asked a question about why it's important to ...
Maxime Morin's user avatar
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9 votes

What is a good finish for shot glasses?

My advice would be not to make glasses out of wood so I'll put that out there right at the start. The only sure-fire ways of waterproofing wood are to completely encase it in a film finish, or ...
Graphus's user avatar
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9 votes
Accepted

Making wood filler from sawdust

Yes, that is a method still in use. You can use it to fill gaps. But, the unfortunate thing about this method is... You create a place on wood that is different in absorbing the oil/stain that you ...
borgs's user avatar
  • 144
8 votes
Accepted

Why does my workpiece become rough again after applying polyurethane varnish when it wasn't before?

Usually when varnish makes a surface rough, it's either that it's picked up dust during the drying process, or it was being brushed/wiped too long after application. Gently sanding between thicker ...
Paul Nardini's user avatar
8 votes
Accepted

How to get zero height painting?

So, how do I finish to get a perfect flat surface, and no "steps" where the paint begins and starts? Build up a sufficient number of layers of finish that they go over the paint thickly enough, so ...
Graphus's user avatar
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7 votes
Accepted

Process for Food Safe Finishing

I have just created my first cutting board and coated it with some salad bowl finish. My question is what is the process for finishing the project? If you like you just completed the finishing since ...
Graphus's user avatar
  • 66.6k
7 votes
Accepted

What's water sandpaper for?

On the terminology first, "water sandpaper" is not the commonly used name for this type of paper. It's generally referred to as wet-and-dry, wet-n-dry or wet-or-dry paper (with or without the hyphens) ...
Graphus's user avatar
  • 66.6k
7 votes

Protecting against water damage

You have a few options that will provide decent waterproofing, including varnish, lacquer and a one-shot poured finish. The easiest and probably most economical is polyurethane varnish. It's not the ...
Graphus's user avatar
  • 66.6k
7 votes

Finishing a desk or tabletop?

I am bit of a Danish oil bigot. It's been so good to me that I have trouble saying anything bad about it. Realize that you will get a matte surface. About forty years ago, I made a table, which ...
Ast Pace's user avatar
  • 3,667
7 votes
Accepted

Do I need to worry about incidental contact between a finish and its thinner / solvent once it's cured?

The answer is, it depends. Finishes that "cure" after drying (like most oil-based products) will typically not be damaged by incidental contact with their solvent. Finishes that only "dry" but do ...
SaSSafraS1232's user avatar
7 votes

How to remove staining caused by a clamp

there appears to have been some sort of reaction with glue squeeze-out that has caused a sort of 'ebonzing' stain from the face of the clamp, through the glue puddle and into the wood. I hang my head ...
Graphus's user avatar
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7 votes
Accepted

What is an efficient way to re-use jars containing old shellac for storing new shellac?

I'm a firm believer in reusing jars used in finishing as much as possible. Especially very small jars that are handy for the small amounts of mixed finish that a single project often calls for, I will ...
Graphus's user avatar
  • 66.6k
7 votes

Can wood be "dyed" transparent?

Apparently there is at least one method of doing this, by chemically breaking down or replacing wood lignin with acrylic. However this method may only be practical in laboratory-type settings, or at ...
StayOnTarget's user avatar
7 votes
Accepted

Filling cracks with epoxy after Tung oil

I think I may have screwed up the order of operations a bit Yup. But because you're using an oil finish it's not quite as bad as it seems. Inside the cracks and other defects the epoxy won't stick ...
Graphus's user avatar
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7 votes

Sanding woods of different hardnesses perfectly flat

My other option might be to glue a rougher grit paper to a large flat board and use this combined with a lot of elbow grease to smooth it out. If you use the right abrasive and the right strategy ...
Graphus's user avatar
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7 votes
Accepted

What kind of respirator do I need to safely work with varnish, polyurethane, and oil-based stain?

For normal chemicals and finishes, most tradespeople will wear a half mask (3M are readily available and popular) with an OV (organic vapor) cartridge and at least P95 filtration. (Filtration since ...
Aloysius Defenestrate's user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

Ideal outdoor preservative for a wooden ornament

As always this sort of thing shouldn't be asked as "What's the best...", because it's usually the case that there is no best, many options may be equally viable. For this if you asked multiple ...
Graphus's user avatar
  • 66.6k
6 votes
Accepted

Is Danish Oil redundant to Polyurethane?

Is Danish Oil redundant to Polyurethane? Mostly yes, you'd normally use one or the other not both. If you're already planning to use an oil-based varnish (any type) as the final finish on a project ...
Graphus's user avatar
  • 66.6k
6 votes

how to fix very light scratches in polyurethane finish?

The polyurethane will be well cured by now. Without stripping everything back and starting over (which you should NOT do cause it's far too much work for a few scatches) all you can do is try and mask ...
Dave Smylie's user avatar
  • 1,055
6 votes

Harden soft pine

There is a product called "Clear Penetrating Epoxy Sealant", or CPES for short. It is basically a very thin 2-part epoxy. It is typically used for stabilizing rotten wood, but it can also be used as ...
SaSSafraS1232's user avatar
6 votes

What finish is suitable for a childrens toy?

Although there continues to be disagreement on this point online (which I expect won't ever stop) any common finish should actually be acceptable for this. The finish needs to be fully cured, see the ...
Graphus's user avatar
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6 votes
Accepted

finish for a very large pine dining table --- is beeswax crazy?

I'll preface my comments by saying that finish choice is a very personal thing, what one person is comfortable using and living with (in terms of upkeep and periodic maintenance) another would not. ...
Graphus's user avatar
  • 66.6k
6 votes

Can polyurethane be used outdoors?

regular PU is not well-suited to the outdoors because: it has no UV degradation inhibitors in it, so eventually the sun will eat it. it is fairly rigid/brittle. seasonal movement will cause it to ...
aaron's user avatar
  • 2,426
6 votes

How to repair the edges of a plywood

I don't think this can be repaired. And if it can the cost will certainly be a lot higher than to replace the sheet entirely.
ON5MF Jurgen's user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

Can I leave indoor wooden furniture unfinished or will it grow mold?

I purchased some furniture that has wooden elements to it that ended up being unfinished. Should I be concerned about this? No. It's extremely common for certain parts of furniture, even fine ...
Graphus's user avatar
  • 66.6k
6 votes

Is a HPLV or Airless Paint Sprayer better for projects with a lot of nooks/crannies?

(I'm going to assume that what you're asking about is "HVLP" (High Volume, Low Pressure) vs airless sprayers. "HPLV" would be another way to describe what are normally called "traditional" spray guns....
SaSSafraS1232's user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

What causes the very dark brown and black color of some antique oak?

Natural effects, the wood itself As touched on in some previous Answers, wood naturally changes colour over time. This 'base effect' so to speak is primarily due to UV light exposure. The natural ...
Graphus's user avatar
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