Finish for shower bench


I'm planning to build a wood bench for a shower/steam room. I bought some 3/4" x1.5" Philippine Mahogany to make it with (nothing is cut yet). Cost was $66 vs. $240 for teak so I hope my choice doesn't haunt me later.
Anyway, When done I want to have a natural looking finish so any kind of Polyurethane is not what I want. I want to use a stain to even out the colors and some kind of oil finish.
1. Does this plan sound reasonable (should I return the wood and buy teak)
2. What kind of final finish would wear best in such a wet situation. Tung oil, Linseed oil, Teak oil, wood preserving (water sealing) stain, natural with clear water sealer only, natural or natural with oil stain. Or some other that I didn't think of.
I plan to audition some scraps in the shower for a week or two and see how it stands up natural. If I can narrow my choices, I will do the same with some finished blocks.
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The better wood would have been cedar nicely sanded, edges radiused and all stainless steel fasteners counter sunk. Any finish you put on for wet area use is likely going to warp the wood and lift the finish at the joints. The real concern is that a finish on most woods would likely hold heat and burn your ass.
Pete
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That's the construction method I will use regardless of the wood specis. I will also use poly glue (like gorilla) at the joints. but I will use a breathable finish like oil or water sealing stain, nothing to lift off. I was looking for a tip on what oil might work best.
I didn't notice Cedar at the woodyard and they had lots of types. Perhaps I missed that isle, might look again, not sure of the price compared to the others.
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You might want to visit your local marine chandlery. There's a broad range of products for protecting wooden decks, handholds, trim and whatnot on boats. I used a product called Armada and it comes in satin, semi-gloss and gloss. There are others that add some color -- unintentionally. Most of these offer UV protection (unnecessary in your shower) as well as protection from water penetration. Good luck!
If you don't have a chandlery nearby, try West Marine, Boat US or Defender. All have on-line catalogues.
Cap'n 321
PipeDown wrote:

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PipeDown wrote:

Well, teak handles weather well. Cypress is pretty good too. What kind of wood is used normally? _____________

I'd use oil; what kind (tung, linseed) doesn't much matter. Teak oil is oil *for* teak BTW, not oil of teak. Nothing special about it, just marketing. ________________

No finish is going to last all that well. Which is why I'd use oil...easy to redo.
--
dadiOH
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Teak is the preferred choice but at 4-5X the price of other woods, I thought I could save some money. I had lots of choices, P Mahogany seemed dense and was suggested by others as being able to handle moisture, It also has a reasonable price. If I wanted to make it real cheap I would use redwood but that is too soft.

Tung oil or water sealing stain seem to be the best choices for a breathable finish that will not peel. I really have no experience with the other oils, I understood teak oil was not necessarily from teak but if it might work on other woods was unclear to me.

Thats the nature of an oil finish, this piece will be periodically wet but not submerged for long periods.

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The teak will look better and last a lot longer, but you probably know that already.

I would seal all exposed end-grain with epoxy and then use a couple of coats of oil. After the oil dries, give it regular treatment with automotive wax (the super-repellent stuff with silicone). Normally, you want to keep car wax well separated from wood furniture, but this isn't one of those cases.
Ken Muldrew snipped-for-privacy@ucalgazry.ca (remove all letters after y in the alphabet)
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I'd use cypress, redwood, or cedar. Teak is good and better than the mahogany. Not sure about the finish, maybe CWF or some other outdoor oil finish. Instead of the galvanized fasteners use stainless and use them such that they won't come in contact with bare skin.
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