Michael Dresdner

straight talk about wood finishing

Archive for the 'rubbing out' Category

Pen polish

Monday, November 8th, 2010

Q: I am new to pen turning. Can you recommend some finishes? A: It depends largely on the pen material. Obviously, cast acrylics need no finish and can simply be buffed. Ditto for very hard or resinous woods, like rosewood, ziricote, bocote, cocobolo, lignum vitae, ebony and even boxwood. For other woods, I tend toward [...]

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Pumice problems

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

Q: When using pumice stone and linseed oil to rub out slight discoloration in an inlaid dining table I encounter little spots forming. The discolorations do disappear. A: First, if you must use pumice (and there are far better alternatives), pair it with a non-drying oil such as mineral oil, not linseed oil. As for [...]

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In the buff

Wednesday, April 28th, 2010

Q: Can I buff waterbased acrylic and be able to get a fair shine? A: Certainly, assuming you started with gloss acrylic. However, it will be much easier, and you’ll get a much better shine, if you wait until the finish is not just dry, but cured. Waterbased finishes generally take about a month to [...]

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Wax won’t abrade

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

Q: I have a can of Butchers Bowling Alley clear paste. Is this the same as automotive compound? A: Nope, not even close. It is wax. You stopped short of the entire name of the product; Butcher’s Bowling Alley clear paste wax. As its name suggests, it is pure paste wax, which is a combination [...]

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Scratches, away!

Monday, April 19th, 2010

Q: Our regularly used dining table was refinished in dark brown, high gloss lacquer and shows superficial surface scratches with use. Is this is normal? A: It is for lacquer, which has only moderate scratch resistance. To make things worse, scratches show more readily on gloss surfaces. Lacquer does have good stain resistance, but not [...]

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Poly who?

Friday, April 9th, 2010

Q: I just had an oak dining table refinished in a dark brown, shiny poly finish. It looks great, but only after two weeks I am seeing dozens of little superficial surface scratches everywhere. Do you think this is normal? A: Fine scratches on the surface of a gloss finish are certainly common. Of course, [...]

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Satin rub primer

Friday, February 26th, 2010

Q: I recently attempted to hand rub the polyurethane finish on a mahogany tabletop that I refinished and was disappointed with the result. The top has three coats of oil based satin polyurethane. The finish had a nice even satin sheen but felt like 220 grit paper. I then wet sanded with 600, 1000 and [...]

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There’s the rub

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Q: I find conflicting information as to whether polyurethane can be rubbed. A: Any finish, including polyurethane, can be rubbed provided it is sufficiently cured. As a rule, the longer the finish cures, the harder it gets and the easier it is to rub. Attempting to rub out a finish that is still rubbery is [...]

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The clear solution

Wednesday, February 17th, 2010

Q: I’m finishing a guitar in Krylon Special Purpose clear Lacquer over Satin Nickel Metallic over gray primer. The clear coat has some orange peel. I’m afraid to wet sand and buff it because I previously sanded through the finish at the edges and had to start over with bare wood. Since the finish looks [...]

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Nibs in wipe on

Monday, February 15th, 2010

Q: I’m trying to finish a secretary project. I’ve done part of it with General Finishing wipe on semi-gloss urethane and I guess I got lucky, because now I can’t get the same results without dust and debris setting in. If you do a semi gloss finish is there a way to erase the nibs [...]

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