Minwax Tung Oil Finish


I called the 1800 number to ask Minwax what is in three "Tung Oil Finish". Many in this group have claimed there is NO tung oil in it.
So I called to find out what they have to say. They told me it is a mixture of Tung Oil (unknown percentage) and Varnish. So it is a oil varnish blend. Why do so many claim there is NO tung oil in there? Did an independent lab run tests I am unaware of?
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Stoutman
http://www.garagewoodworks.com
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stoutman wrote:

Isn't that what it says on the label?

They've read _Understanding Wood Finishes_ by Bob Flexnor, or other wrtiings by him or derivative of his. He insists that many 'tung oils' have little or no tung oil in them. I have never seen anyone cite a specific example of a 'tung oil' that was anything but.
As you found out, 'tung oil finish' may contain other things in addition to tung oil. That seems to be the basis for the myth that many 'tugnoils' aren't.
I found Mr Flexnor's book to be excellent but with some caveats. He is fond of debunking 'old wives tales' which in some cases seem to be rather contrived misttatements of conventional wisdom. His directions for using sodium hydroxide are unsafe. Google this ng for the right way.
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FF


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http://www.leevalley.com/wood/page.aspx?c=2&p 049&cat=1,190,42942
Consider it cited.
-Steve
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Steve,
Unless I am mistaken you misunderstood his point. He is saying that he has never seen a specific example of a 'tung oil' that did not contain 'tung oil'.
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Perhaps you are correct.
I've read it three times and I'm still not sure. I though he was trying to say that "all tung oils are really some type of blend"
That said, what I took away from the Flexner text, was that just because the can says "tung oil" does not mean that that it has a meaningful amount of tung oil. In a practical sense, there are products out there with tung oil in their name that, for all intents and purposes, have no tung oil at all.
Unless it says "pure tung oil", the label tells you very little about what's in the can. I would be nice if finishe shad FDA-style labeling, (e.g., HI-C really does have 10% real fruit juice, which, IMO is pretty insignificant).
Cheers,
Steve
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Stephen M wrote:

Then I should clarify.
I've never seen a product labeled 'tung oil' that was anything but _tung oil_.
Any product I have ever seen that was tung oil plus something else was labeled 'tung oil foo', for various values of 'foo' and NOT just 'tung oil'.

Yes, that is what he says and I say that's a myth. Had he not omitted 'foo', then the statement might have been true. As it stands, his statement is like observing that 'Cranberry Juice Cocktail' might have very little cranberry juice in it and then writing that 'Cranberries' don't necessarily have any cranberry in them at all.
That is one of my criticisms of his book. The 'myths' he debunks are sometimes exagerations or misinterpretations of true statements, and I'm not clear that anyone other than the author ever made those exagerations or misinterpretations. E.g. he debunks a couple of straw men.
However, the bulk of his text is a very practical and informative guide to wood finishing. I'm happy to recomend it.

My experience in reading labels tells me that if it says 'tung oil' it is pure tung oil. If it says 'tung oil foo' then it is not pure tung oil anymore than latex paint is pure latex.
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FF


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I believe what Flexner and others have said is that products labeled "tung oil finish", as opposed to those labeled "tung oil" or "pure tung oil", may contain little or no tung oil. I guess it's something like a can of stain labeled "golden pecan" contains no pecans, or "wlanut finish" contains no walnuts.
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Larry Wasserman Baltimore, Maryland
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