Finishing Wood the Correct Way
Finishing Wood the Correct Way
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Learning to do it right is always better than learning how to fix it once it done wrong. Take the time to learn the correct way to finish, you will end up with less work in the long-run and better pieces as a bonus.
If you have a woodworking project or a home improvement project coming up that requires staining wood, but you are not sure how to do it these tips will show you exactly how to stain wood for a rich, professional look. There is nothing complicated here so anyone should be able to follow along and be successful with their staining project.
You’ll be happy to know that this seemingly simple process baffled me for quite some time as well. Over the years though, I’ve developed a simple system of application that results in a perfect finish every time. The streaking you are describing seems to be the result of the finish being applied too thin. But you don’t want to go quite as thick as a brushed-on coat. The way I get a coat that is “just right”, is by using the wipe on/no wipe off method. And I would abandon the sponge applicator in favor of a simple folded rag.
When you apply the final coat of clear wood finish to a project, are you “finished”? That depends on the look you’re after. In reality, simply applying a few coats of clear finish and waiting for them to dry rarely leads to a smooth, consistent look. Most of the time, you have to “finish the finish”. The process is called “rubbing out”, and serves the purpose of getting rid of minor imperfections in a surface film finish, such as varnish or lacquer, (sometimes) leveling the finished surface, and establishing a consistent sheen.
So we have two issue to discuss here: film thickness and color. Any oil-based product is going to give the wood some kind of an amber color. So if your goal is to keep the wood as natural-looking as possible, you might want to avoid oil-based products. What you want to go for is a finish that is known as “water-white”.
When a stain or wood finish is first introduced to bare wood it comes to life. You finally see the beauty of the wood. The finish you choose not only protects your project but can highlight the beautiful grain patterns or can be used to hide flaws. these tips hold true for new woodworking projects as well as furniture refinishing.
Finishing is one of the biggest fears of many woodworkers. They are undaunted by complex joinery, intricate and precise machining, or hand-carving details, yet many woodworkers dread the thought of applying a finish to their work. The question of 'best finish' and the fear of ruining their project with the wrong finish, or applying it incorrectly, keep woodworkers from taking that last step. If you ask yourselves the same question whenever you are working on a project, you will find that overcoming that fear and developing the confidence to finish what you have started is essential to your satisfaction in a project.
Stripping the old, scratched up, stained finish off of furniture and bringing it back to life again with a new beautiful finish can be very rewarding. You can save money by refinishing furniture and I want to share refinishing tips with you to save you time and frustration.
If you do a quick search of the internet for articles on shellac you will find hundreds, maybe even thousands of them discussing different aspects of this historic product. You will undoubtedly find articles discussing shellac's history and origins. Just in case you don't know, shellac is a resin secreted by the Lac Beetle and primarily harvested from India and other countries in south Asia.