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Thread: Quick finish for small spindle turnings

  1. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Gresham, Oregon
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    358
    snowmen.jpg
    I am a fan of Minwax Polywipe. I good coat, wipe off excess and after a few hours i buff and wax with the Beale system. I've done a probably 100 angels with this method and after 10 years they all look like just finished.

  2. #17
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Atikokan, Rainy River district, Ontario
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    3,540
    I like to keep the wood color as is, so I polish them with Carnauba wax, enough shine and no color changes plus it’s quickly done.

    Birdhouse & Snowman.jpg Snow ladie.jpg Snowpair + birdhouse.jpg
    Have fun and take care

  3. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Redding, CA (That's in superior Calif.)
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    821
    The finish I use depends on the wood. I've tried a few over the years and I keep coming back to my 2 basics. One is wipe-on poly and the other is a mix that I found in a review of finishes on PSI. The guy who wrote it liked his own finish (for pens) better than the one he tried. He liked it because it was a nice finish and lasted a long time due to durability. It's simply a 50-50 mix of Deft (I use gloss) and lacquer thinner.

    I just use a little 2 oz glass bottle of 1 oz each. I apply it with a 1/4 square of a blue shop towel and buff with an old handkerchief which is lint free. I do it all on the lathe and do at least 6 coats. I apply the 1st coat with the lathe off, turn the lathe on, and let it run at around 2800 rpm for 2 mins. I buff for 1:45 min. The 2nd coat is applied with the lathe running using the same towel with the finish already on it from the 1st coat. This is done with just a light swipe. Then, let the lathe keep running for 1:45 min to dry the coat and then buff again for 1:45 min. Repeat this for at least 6 coats or more if you want. This method can be used for turnings other than pens. I just had to use it for a cocobolo bottle stopper because the wipe-on poly I first tried stayed sticky. Lesson learned is not to use wipe-on poly on oily woods Please note that this is not my original idea. I really like it because there is no mess to clean up. I do wear a cheapo pair of nitrile gloves from harbor freight though. Compared to wipe-on poly, the smell of Deft is pretty intense.

    I apply the wipe-on poly off of the lathe. I use the blue shop towel for applying 4 coats letting each coat dry over night. If there are any nibs, you can lightly sand with 600 grit. I'm thankful that I learned about these 2 methods of finishing. They are easy to apply and the results are adequate for the amateur work that I don YMMV
    Project Salvager

    The key to the gateway of wisdom is to know that you don't know.______Stan Smith

  4. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    E TN, near Knoxville
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Smith View Post
    ...I just had to use it for a cocobolo bottle stopper because the wipe-on poly I first tried stayed sticky. Lesson learned is not to use wipe-on poly on oily woods ....
    One thing I discovered to avoid using on Cocobolo - Watco "Danish" oil. I don't know exactly what ingredient caused the problem, but the beautiful colors in a piece turned black very quickly. After just a few months it looked almost as black as ebony.

    JKJ

  5. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Redding, CA (That's in superior Calif.)
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    821
    Quote Originally Posted by John K Jordan View Post
    One thing I discovered to avoid using on Cocobolo - Watco "Danish" oil. I don't know exactly what ingredient caused the problem, but the beautiful colors in a piece turned black very quickly. After just a few months it looked almost as black as ebony.

    JKJ
    Hi John. I guess there are a lot of things that affect the color(s) of wood. I was not happy when some osage orange and also purple heart turned brown.
    Project Salvager

    The key to the gateway of wisdom is to know that you don't know.______Stan Smith

  6. #21
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    sykesville, maryland
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    340
    what about bleach to turn them white?

  7. #22
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    E TN, near Knoxville
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Smith View Post
    Hi John. I guess there are a lot of things that affect the color(s) of wood. I was not happy when some osage orange and also purple heart turned brown.
    Osage and purpleheart will always turn brown. Purpleheart is usually brown when cut then turns purple, some say, with exposure to oxygen and light, then slowly turns brown again. You can often delay color change with a good sealing finish and keeping the piece out of strong light.

    But there are different types of purpleheart. I got some boards some years ago that are a strong purple color as soon as they are cut and stay that way far longer than most. You can bet I keep the remaining stock guarded! I read that some purpleheart from Mexico is like that.

    BTW, the late Jim King, wood dealer from Iquitos Peru, said people in his area can't believe the demand for purpleheart n the States. They use it for floor joists and such!

    An excellent article about wood color is on the Wood Database web site: https://www.wood-database.com/wood-a...-exotic-woods/

    JKJ

  8. #23
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Redding, CA (That's in superior Calif.)
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    821
    Quote Originally Posted by John K Jordan View Post
    Osage and purpleheart will always turn brown. Purpleheart is usually brown when cut then turns purple, some say, with exposure to oxygen and light, then slowly turns brown again. You can often delay color change with a good sealing finish and keeping the piece out of strong light.

    But there are different types of purpleheart. I got some boards some years ago that are a strong purple color as soon as they are cut and stay that way far longer than most. You can bet I keep the remaining stock guarded! I read that some purpleheart from Mexico is like that.

    BTW, the late Jim King, wood dealer from Iquitos Peru, said people in his area can't believe the demand for purpleheart n the States. They use it for floor joists and such!

    An excellent article about wood color is on the Wood Database web site: https://www.wood-database.com/wood-a...-exotic-woods/

    JKJ
    Thanks so much, John. The url you provided is quite comprehensive on properties of the woods they discuss. It really does explain, quite well, how the woods change and what finishes to use. Some woods that I used recently, I have had for a few years. They also were exposed to some extreme heat from a wildfire. Most all were covered with wax. I am lucky that I can still use it.
    Project Salvager

    The key to the gateway of wisdom is to know that you don't know.______Stan Smith

  9. #24
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    Northern Illinois
    Posts
    142
    I've been making small snowman ornaments for practice with the skew and detail gouge - here's what I've made so far in the last couple weeks. I personally like the natural/unpainted look, though others that have painted look great too.

    The more shiny ones I just used a single coat of lacquer/lacquer thinner mix on the lathe, the less shiny have no finish. Most are from a bradford pear tree that came down in our yard last year, a couple are cedar, and the two lightest are unknown (a branch that came down at my church from a flowering tree....maybe magnolia???).

    I'm still learning and far from competent, yet really enjoying the process!!!


    snowmen 2019.jpg

  10. Decades ago, I had access to teak cut offs from a furniture factory. Teak is sort of a honey color, turns easy and is very oily. You need to use a sharp scraper for the finish cut, because sand paper just builds friction, the heat brings the oil to the surface and it just gums up the sand paper. However, once you get a nice finish cut, just hold a rag to the wood and create friction. The friction creates heat, the heat brings the oil up to the surface and the friction causes the oil to dry to the surface.

  11. #26
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Redding, CA (That's in superior Calif.)
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    821
    Those are really nice, Thomas. I've made a few from the Craft Supplies kits, but I like yours better.
    Project Salvager

    The key to the gateway of wisdom is to know that you don't know.______Stan Smith

  12. #27
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Redding, CA (That's in superior Calif.)
    Posts
    821
    Hi Perry thanks for the tip. I don't have any teak, but I'm going to try your suggestion on other oily woods.
    Project Salvager

    The key to the gateway of wisdom is to know that you don't know.______Stan Smith

  13. #28
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    E TN, near Knoxville
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    8,486
    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Smith View Post
    Hi Perry thanks for the tip. I don't have any teak, but I'm going to try your suggestion on other oily woods.
    I think I mentioned in an earlier message that some species don't need any finish, some oily, some just hard, fine grained. Ebony, cocobolo, and lignum vitae can be buffed to a shine. I usually hand rub with renaissance wax afterwards.

    JKJ

  14. #29
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Northern Illinois
    Posts
    508
    Just recently I used a product called Aussie Oil sold by Penn State Industries (maybe others also). I haven't turned a lot of pens but on the few I have used it on, it really brings out the grain in whatever wood you use it on. So far I've used it on rosewood, wedge, and walnut. It is meant to apply while the work is on the lathe and polish while turning on the lathe. The finish is shiny but I would suppose it could be dulled a little with light sanding with very fine sandpaper, steel wool or the artificial pads. Don't know about that though. Just know it really brings out the grain.

  15. #30
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    KCMO
    Posts
    502
    Good info in this thread, but at least two aspects are kind of lacking attention for me.

    Most of the friction polishes are shellac-based. Even so-called blonde shellac will immediately color the wood. It's a pleasant color, but it's not water clear like many lacquers. Even the whitest maple or holly will gain a honey color. Again, it's pretty, but if you want white snowmen, shellac might not be the way to go.

    I had a conversation with the folks at Deft about guarding those special woods from UV rays that are a prime cause of browning for Osage Orange and purpleheart and the like. They have a few lacquers that are designated for outdoor use that contain UV inhibitors. Those lacquers will delay the oxidation of the wood and the effects of UV rays, but are not a full prevention.

    The other factor in my choice of finish has to do with how much handling the items will undergo. A pen for daily use is going to get a lot more handling than the Christmas tree ornament that is handled going onto and coming off from the tree. A CA finish for pens is very hard and wears well, but it can crack if struck on a metal edge, say a desk edge. You can guess how I know this, right? CA cures in days. Some lacquers take up to 30 days to cure. I'm not sure about polyurethanes or urethanes. There is a dry time and a cure time for all finishes. It's worth looking into so you have some ideas about the finishes.

    My two cents worth...
    Dean Thomas
    KCMO

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