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Thread: Glossier finish for end grain cutting board

  1. #1
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    Glossier finish for end grain cutting board

    A while ago I build an end grain cutting board that we use a ton in our kitchen. It was time to do a little resurfacing, so I ran it through the wide belt sander and sanded off a few hundredths.

    I had thought that I had finished the original board with mineral oil and beeswax, but when I took that route again this time, the board has a dull finish, not glossy like the sides show. Maybe I used another finish. I can't believe that I would have used lacquer on it, as I know we would be using it a lot.

    These pictures don't show it well, but the top finish is dead flat, and the sides are glossy.
    Flat cutting board finish 1.jpgFlat cutting board finish 2.jpg

    Any ideas as to a good finish for this that's glossier?
    - When God closes a door, he opens a window. Our heating bill is outrageous & six raccoons got in last night. Please God, this has to stop!
    - Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read.

  2. #2
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    If it's a "user", you don't want any kind of film finish on it. My recommendation is to stick with mineral oil and maybe wax in addition (a heated mixture of mineral oil and paraffin wax that will soak in)
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker View Post
    If it's a "user", you don't want any kind of film finish on it. My recommendation is to stick with mineral oil and maybe wax in addition (a heated mixture of mineral oil and paraffin wax that will soak in)
    That's exactly what I did, Jim. I agree that I don't want a film finish on it. But what in the world did I use initially to get a glossy surface? The heated mineral oil and beeswax just looks flat when buffed out.
    - When God closes a door, he opens a window. Our heating bill is outrageous & six raccoons got in last night. Please God, this has to stop!
    - Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read.

  4. #4
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    I believe the finish on the sides of the board is a film finish. What grit did you sand the faces to? Sanding it to 300 grit, or finer, will give it a slightly more polished looking surface. The downside is that with use the cut marks will stand out that much more.

  5. #5
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    End grain boards properly oiled end up a bit dull. Edge/face will remain brighter(not really glossy). You could try oiling it and buffing off waiting a day and doing it again waiting another couple days and repeat. The board may have been thirsty once you broke through any wax you had built up on the surface.

    I would, for the last coat use something with beeswax in it.

  6. #6
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    In my experience beeswax doesn't develop a glossy surface appearance.
    Lee Schierer
    Captain USNR(Ret)

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  7. #7
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    Sanding that end grain up to a very fine abrasive will also help with the sheen, but again, the nature of the beast's use will govern what's best to do here.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  8. #8
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    I must have used a film finish on the original board, though no clue why I would have done that, and don't remember doing that. I knew better, and designed the board to be used.

    The board was very thirsty for oil after the sanding. I'd love to have a way to soak it in mineral oil for days, but it's just too big, so I took several days applying oil, then finally a heated mineral oil/beeswax finish, and indeed it is dull.
    - When God closes a door, he opens a window. Our heating bill is outrageous & six raccoons got in last night. Please God, this has to stop!
    - Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read.

  9. #9
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    I made it a point to seal the edges of my cutting boards with de-waxed shellac. Nice smooth shiny finish easy to redo when the working part of the board needs to be resurfaced.
    Scott

    Finishing is an 'Art & a Science'. Actually, it is a process. You must understand the properties and tendencies of the finish you are using. You must know the proper steps and techniques, then you must execute them properly.

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