NOW ACCEPTING OPINIONS: Finish for Peruvian Walnut countertop

I'm just finishing up construction of a counter and I'm wondering what finish to use. I've got one strong recommendation for "osmo oil", a few for just tung oil and one person who says I'm nuts if I don't use some sort of spar varnish on it.
The client is pretty flexible. She doesn't mind it getting a bit dinged up over time, doesn't want it to look "plasticy", but also doesn't want it to fall apart if she lets a few dishes dry on it overnight. We've used a LOT of tung oil at work, but I'm not convinced it offers all that much protection. But I do like a penetrating oil finish. And this guy says Osmo is really, really good, in his opinion.
Anyone heard of it? Any other opinions? <snicker>
Thanks. JP
PS - This Peruvian walnut is some of the nicest stuff I've ever seen. It's like the cleanest chocolate American walnut you've ever seen. Awesome. I hope I'm not completely denuding the rainforest for using it though.... Perhaps I should have gone FSC Certified... <sigh> It's so pretty though.
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"Jay Pique" wrote

From what I've seen, "osmo oil" is good stuff ... it doesn't look all that "plasticy" and if it's good for floors (where I've seen it applied), it should work well on a counter top. IIRC, my SIL told me it's used quite a bit in kitchens in UK/Europe.
Test it on a piece and see how it goes.
The other alternative may be a gel polyurethane finish. Leon just used a Lawrence McFadden Co product on some walnut we brought back from a recent trip to Arkansas and it turned out gorgeous with nothing but the gel applied.
FWIW ...
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I say mineral oil if it's a finish she is going to prepare food on and doesn't want it sealed with a hard finish.
Tung oil is pretty succeptable to moisture. I have it on a coupe of antiques, I ALWAYS make sure that they have coasters on them. Unlike a poly finish that is pretty much waterproof.
Kate
I'm just finishing up construction of a counter and I'm wondering what finish to use. I've got one strong recommendation for "osmo oil", a few for just tung oil and one person who says I'm nuts if I don't use some sort of spar varnish on it.
The client is pretty flexible. She doesn't mind it getting a bit dinged up over time, doesn't want it to look "plasticy", but also doesn't want it to fall apart if she lets a few dishes dry on it overnight. We've used a LOT of tung oil at work, but I'm not convinced it offers all that much protection. But I do like a penetrating oil finish. And this guy says Osmo is really, really good, in his opinion.
Anyone heard of it? Any other opinions? <snicker>
Thanks. JP
PS - This Peruvian walnut is some of the nicest stuff I've ever seen. It's like the cleanest chocolate American walnut you've ever seen. Awesome. I hope I'm not completely denuding the rainforest for using it though.... Perhaps I should have gone FSC Certified... <sigh> It's so pretty though.
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I would start with a danish oil or tung oil , to bring out the color and wood grain, When that is very dry, I would put a few coats of polyurethane. This will keep the misture out, being a counter top, you will need some protection from water.
Randy http://nokeswoodworks.com
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General Finishes Oil and polyurathane. (available in gloss and satin) Flood it on, wipe in/off the excess. (builds well if you like)
Wonderful stuff
Myx
wrote:

I would start with a danish oil or tung oil , to bring out the color and wood grain, When that is very dry, I would put a few coats of polyurethane. This will keep the misture out, being a counter top, you will need some protection from water.
Randy http://nokeswoodworks.com
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I see that's a Homestead Finishing product. They seem like a really good operation - I'm going to give them a call on Monday and see what they have to say. You're talking about the Seal-a-Cell or the Arm-R- Seal, right? Any preference of the two? Or it looks like maybe you'd start with the SAC and then finish with the ARS for a bit more protection.
Thanks, all, for the suggestions. If I can find a big enough crowbar I might get a new camera which will allow me to post a pic or two of the finished product!
JP
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On Sun, 18 May 2008 13:35:37 -0700 (PDT), Jay Pique

My local Woodcraft also sells GF products.
Homestead is great, but mail ordering finishes can be a pain.
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Thanks, Barry - there's a Woodcraft not too far from me. JP
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One thing you have to make sure of, the finish you use should be food safe. That's why I recommended mineral oil. I have a cherry butcher-block on my island and I played hell trying to get it the right color. I used a water based stain (hate them) then oiled it with mineral oil daily for two weeks, then weekly for a month.
Unfortunately the color I used is not going to last as it is. I am trying to decide if I want to strip the color off of it and just oil the top so I can use it as a whole work surface - or if I want to put a poly finish on it and keep using my cutting boards. I had really hoped to eliminate the cutting boards.
The natural color is much lighter than I want it to be so it's a tough decision.
Kate
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