View Full Version : Finish the inside?

Sam Chambers
08-31-2005, 12:19 PM
The woodworking part of my cherry jewlery box project is almost done, and I'm about to start finishing. Here's the plan:

1. Sand to 220 by ROS, 320 by hand.
2. Apply BLO.
3. Seal with shellac (Zinsser SealCoat)
4. Topcoat with Minwax Wipe-On Poly

I've been doing some reading, here and elsewhere, and have found differing opinions on whether to finish the inside of the case and drawers. I have to finish the inside of the drawers, because I'm going to leave the sides showing, i.e.: not covered in velvet like the drawer bottom.

But what about the inside of the case? The two schools of thought seem to be:

1. Don't bother finishing the inside.
2. You must finish the inside, or you'll have problems with warping or cupping due to uneven absorption of moisture.

What I was thinking is that there probably isn't a reason to apply BLO to the inside, but I shold probably seal the inside with SealCoat.

Does this make sense?

Phil Phelps
08-31-2005, 2:06 PM
....it'll look more professional, anyway.

Michael Stafford
08-31-2005, 3:16 PM
In ny humble opinion you should finish it inside and out. I sand and finish my drawers just like the rest of the project. You can almost count on someone touching the drawer sides and bottom to see if they are finished nicely. I believe it is worth going the extra mile.

One other thing I would suggest is that you make every effor to sand all internal surfaces prior to assembly so that they don't need any more after it is glued up. I also put blue tape in the corners of all joints before glue up to eliminate any problems there during assembly. Sure makes it a lot easier to remove any squeeze out if it is stuck to tape and not to wood. ;)

Alan Turner
08-31-2005, 3:26 PM
Jewelery boxes may be different, but on my drawers I finish only with shellac, inside and out. 2 coats. Do not use the poly or you will have an odor.

Steve Schoene
08-31-2005, 5:07 PM
While not necessary, for small boxes I think a little finish would be desirable. I'd leave off the BLO inside and just use a coat of shellac. I wouldn't use it on larger case works. The joinery prevents the warping that might occur. Of course for unsupported panels--like table drop leaves balancing the finish on both sides is important. By the way, shellac is a better barrier against water vapor than poly. (Although not against liquid water.)

Are people going to set cold drinks on it? Walk on it? Spill chemicals on it?
If the answer is no I would just eliminate the poly and build a few more coats of the shellac. Shellac rubs out so much more easily than poly and I think looks better.

Ken Rowe
02-07-2008, 1:22 PM
I always finish the inside of jewelry boxes and box drawers with shellac. It dries fast and doesn't out gas odors for months like oil finishes. Sand the first coat with 600 grit to remove any raised wood fibers then apply a second coat.