Ping Robert & Bill (Nailshootter & SonomaProducts)

And anyone else with input, recommedations.....
Re: Finishing Walnut Table
Remembering my mistake of applying BLO to the trestle board, for popping t he grain, but BLO darkens/blurrs with age.
I'm just about ready to finish the rest of the raw wood table: You've recommended (I read other various posts/threads, as well) applying s hellac (rather than BLO), to pop the grain.... thinned coats, right?, in or der to have some penetration into the wood? Apply with a brush? I'm thi nking, spraying won't allow for much penetration.
Is spraying the thinned coat just as good as brushing? OR would you recom mend brushing-on the thinned coat? Reason for my asking: I'm not looking forward to brushin-on shellac over the whole of the table parts.
Once the thinned shellac coat is applied, would another #2 or #3 cut coat b e recommended? .... 2nd coat sprayed on.
I plan to spray/top coat the shellac with 2 or 3 coats of lacquer.
Additional comment: Two months ago, I stripped the trestle board, but app arently not all of the BLO was removed. Some did penetrate. Once stripp ed and washed with lacquer thinner, I brushed on #2 shellac. Yesterday, I sanded the trestle board (prepping for final finish) and the sand paper st ill clots, a bit, not much... I suppose it's the BLO, still. The trestle board looks nice, though, so I'll just coat it with #2 or #3 shellac, befor e applying the lacquer.
In other threads, you mention filling the grain, of some woods. Why is th is important? Should I consider filling the grain of this walnut dining t able?
Thanks. Sonny
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Sonny wrote:

You didn't ask me but I'm tired of sanding, sooo...
Filling is only important if you want a glassy smooth finish. Think pianos. Fill walnut? I wouldn't. If you do, try using #FFFF pumice.
BLO does indeed darken with age. How much it darkens is primarily a function of how smooth the surface was to begin with; i.e., how much is caught in the nooks and crannies of the surface. I have a couple of sapwood poplar trays in a kitchen drawer, both with BLO, both 20+ years old. One is very little darker than the original wood; it was well sanded. The other is about the color of varnished butternut; it was sanded much less well.
All my life I have heard, "Thin the first coat so it will penetrate". I have never believed it, still don't. Why? The finish molecules are much smaller than any interstices in the wood. If I had a microscope I'd prove it but I don't.
Have you compared the pop from shellac to that of lacquer?
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On Friday, August 14, 2015 at 1:22:09 PM UTC-5, dadiOH wrote:

os.

I like to think some of the natural surface, including texture, is desirabl e to see and feel, so I hadn't considered filling any grain.

I had sanded the trestle board to 320 grit, but left the BLO on for a good while, before wiping off.



e

I have a microscope. What do I look for? I would suppose the alcohol wo uld (initialy) penetrate faster, hence more would be absorbed deeper into t he wood, carrying the shellac with it. But also, the alcohol dries so fast , it wouldn't be absorb as readily (or as deep) as, say, water. I would t hink an oil would have a better tendency to penetrate deeper, slowly wick d eeper, with time, as opposed to a quicker drying finish.

I've never compared the two. .... Never thought to compare the two! I' ll compare my bath cabinets (walnut sprayed only with lacquer) to a shellac sample (to be done today). My bath cabinets look nice!
Thanks. Sonny
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com says...

Google "surface tension".

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Sonny wrote:

Apply thinned and unthinned to small, different areas of the same piece of wood, let dry, cut slices and compare penetration depth.
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On 8/14/2015 12:57 PM, Sonny wrote:

Spraying shellac is fine. It's not the type of finish that really penetrates the wood. I would mix blonde shellac, with a little orange to get more depth. I think orange provides a little more pop, but on Walnut may darken it too much. So blonde to get the pop, and add Orange to enhance without going overboard, to get your desired color.
Test to be sure.
Walnut is not a grain that I think requires filling. Not like other open pored woods.
Don't use waxed shellac. You want dewaxed especially if you are top coating with Laquer. The wax will prevent a good adhesion for the Laquer.
--
Jeff

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On Friday, August 14, 2015 at 4:06:02 PM UTC-5, woodchucker wrote:
So blonde to get the pop, and add Orange

Thanks Jeff. All I have is dewaxed super blonde (flakes) and 2 half filled quarts of sealcoat, not sure which tones of Sealcoat, but I think both are clear (dates 2012 & 2013).
Didn't have a chance to do any testing, earlier today.... ran a few errands this afternoon... but will test.
Sonny
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On Friday, August 14, 2015 at 11:57:26 AM UTC-5, Sonny wrote:

the grain, but BLO darkens/blurrs with age.

shellac (rather than BLO), to pop the grain.... thinned coats, right?, in order to have some penetration into the wood? Apply with a brush? I'm t hinking, spraying won't allow for much penetration.
For the reason that DaddiOH expressed, I don't thin my first coat. But for this reason, I do. Thinning the material makes it lay out better since th e first coat faces the most drag on the brushes, and thinning reduces drag and allows the thinned material to flow into the irregularities of the surf ace. As DaddiO said, it DOES NOT increase penetration on a sanded surface.

commend brushing-on the thinned coat? Reason for my asking: I'm not look ing forward to brushin-on shellac over the whole of the table parts.

I spray when possible. It's very simple; to get the same penetration/film t hickness as a brush application, put the same amount on with your spray gun . Shoot a nice wet coat of shellac (dewaxed) tuned to your spray equipment , and go on your way. Want some depth to the finish? Put about three coat s of shellac on, all sprayed. Shellac will resolvate and easily bite into the previous coats, no sanding needed.

be recommended? .... 2nd coat sprayed on.

See above. Set your gun up to apply a wet, smooth, coat. If you are happy with the appearance and ease of application, then don't change the mix. S ince shellac resolvates, there is no reason to change your gun setup/materi al mix for the tiny benefit you get. If you don't think you are getting en ough material on the surface, apply another coat, don't put on a thick coat . While shellac can be recoated quickly, that doesn't mean it has complete ly outgassed. Thick coats on top of one another can trap the alcohol fumes in the finish and make it take much longer for your substrate to be cured out.

Why you would use lacquer on a dining room/kitchen/contantly cleaned table, I don't know. If you are insistent on lacquer, look at some of the "water clear" industrial lacquers that are out there from Sherwin Williams or ML Cambell. They are made for this type of application and are tough as nails . Both are post catalyzed, but not difficult by any means to use. Both ar e made for hard use and will probably last as long as you have the table.
If you don't want to go that route, I would strongly suggest using polyuret hane on the top. A good paint store like Sherwin Williams, etc., NOT HD OR LOWES, will have a yellowing resistant finish you can shoot. It made appe ar different in appearance from the shellac, but the shellac will amber ove r time and probably come very close to an exact match on a dark wood like w alnut. And you need to remember, the top will get full light and will look lighter/different than the rest of the table anyway. You won't have that m uch trouble with ambering on the top with poly if you have that good prime coat of shellac.
I have a client that I have done a lot of work for over a period of many ye ars. She acquired a big, heavy, America made farm table with heavy turned legs and a 2" thick maple butcher block top. She had me refinish it. I spr ayed the legs with the same super enamel I used on her cabinets but she wan ted clear on the top. I stripped and sanded the top, and put on two really thick coats of Minwax (just read in one of the finishing pubs how well it stacked up against the more expensive and exotic finishes) with a pad. No prime coat of anything. That was about twelve years ago. It has not amber ed, and is as good as new after being used hard as a kid's dining room tabl e, the homework table, the craft project table, the Christmas prep table, t he metal baking rack table, the alternate food prep table at the holidays, etc.
For the record, I like Minwax poly. (I can hear the shrieks of horror from here!) I used on my significant other's desk after seeing how well that ha s held up, and put 4 thin coats on over the flame birch top. The condition is still perfect and it gets used many, many hours a week. After about 10 years, there is some ambering, but It may be the birch as much as the poly .
The really nice thing in the instance of using a good poly is you don't hav e to prime coat with anything. I think a shot of shellac really enhances t he grain, but more importantly under poly it will keep the poly from making the finish muddied. So to wrap all that noise up, for me, shoot shellac a nd get at least a 1 mil dried coat of shellac on the surface (up to 2 mil O K, no more), then a couple of good coats of poly.

pparently not all of the BLO was removed. Some did penetrate. Once stri pped and washed with lacquer thinner, I brushed on #2 shellac. Yesterday, I sanded the trestle board (prepping for final finish) and the sand paper still clots, a bit, not much... I suppose it's the BLO, still. The trestl e board looks nice, though, so I'll just coat it with #2 or #3 shellac, bef ore applying the lacquer.

this important? Should I consider filling the grain of this walnut dining table?

Good on ya for the lacquer wash. It cleans up the uncured,fouled bits of f inish well. My favorite cleaner. And for cleaning, the cheaper the better .
For a couple of centuries, walnut was always filled. Always. It was a sign of fine finishing. And again to touch on DaddiOH's comment (the man is a fountain of this stuff!) FFFF pumice was the weapon of choice for fine fini shing. A couple of centuries ago and even further back, the French Polish method of dauber and method was used to achieve filling the grain while fin ishing. Filling the wood provided a smooth, attractive, cleanable surface.
Fast forward to now, and unless it as a nut wood with heavy tubules we don' t fill. This actually started as a reaction in the 60s to the fact that so me of the fake wood tops looked so much like wood that they fooled the cons umer. So wood grain became the fashion in 60s up to this day. However, it also eliminated a finishing step for furniture manufacturers and for the h ome enthusiast by dropping the bar to a reasonable level. Who wants to spe nt three weeks French Polishing a table top? Not me!
You can get fillers (the best being FFFF pumice or the like)and simply appl y them as a pasted, then sand off the top lightly and it is "filled". But for most folks taste, like mine, I like a little wood grain texture in the finish as it me it adds a bit of warmth and authenticity. I don't fill.
Good luck, Sonny. Hope you let us know how it turned out.
Robert
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On Saturday, August 15, 2015 at 12:28:52 PM UTC-5, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

I always try to spray shellac and lacquer, rather than brush on. I think my self-taught spraying is okay, except for getting lots of overspray in ti ght corners, inside cabinets, etc.

e, I don't know. If you are insistent on lacquer, look at some of the "wat er clear" industrial lacquers that are out there from Sherwin Williams or M L Cambell.
Here, again, you're making me rethink my procedure/schedule. In the past, I've used (Lowes) water based Varethane Floor Finish for utility "abused" surfaces, like on my sewing tables, on the (camp's) gun/china cabinet, etc. For my more refined pieces, I've always used this Sherwin Williams preca t lacquer and catalyst: https://www.flickr.com/photos/43836144@N04/
Is this (pictured) industrial enough for table-top use/abuse? I don't thi nk it is water based, since I thin it and clean-up with lacquer thinner.

ethane on the top. A good paint store like Sherwin Williams, etc., NOT HD OR LOWES, will have a yellowing resistant finish you can shoot.
I'll do that, check with SW.

"Textured" surfaces: I have always liked some surface texture, especially when using old or salvaged lumber. I generally don't like lots of straig ht lines, straight/square cuts. I like lots of curves, which is one reas on I wanted live edges on the table top and the root balls used for the leg s.
Regarding the root ball legs: I cut and planed them when the wood was gre en, 2-3 yrs ago. They have since dried, further, and the surfaces have wa rped. I like this warped effect.... see the subsequent pics on the Flickr page. That initial fairly severe checking, in one of the slabs, that was filled with West System's 650-8 G-Flex epoxy - http://www.westsystem.com/s s/g-flex-epoxy/ - has held up very well. The subsequent warping has not a ffected that epoxy "repair"/filling. There is no other areas, on either l eg unit, that have checked to the point of needing repair, filing, etc.
I'm hoping (wishful thinking?) to finish this table by Aug 29, to show it o ff to relatives, when they come for the family reunion. The recent month o f 100 degree heat is taxing my efforts. *Yesterday I bought a frig for th e shop (validation: shop accessory), so that I don't have to walk to the ho use to get a beer. Lately, Ive become too lazy to walk that far, after st ints of heated woodworking.
Thanks Robert. Sonny
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On Sunday, August 16, 2015 at 10:00:34 AM UTC-5, Sonny wrote:

k my self-taught spraying is okay, except for getting lots of overspray in tight corners, inside cabinets, etc.

If you are that far along, change to a super thinned version of your coatin g and shoot it at the lowest pressure you can to get a good finish. And re member, no matter how good you are, that stuff just seems to happen anyway.

Here, again, you're making me rethink my procedure/schedule. In the past, I've used (Lowes) water based Varethane Floor Finish for utility "abused" surfaces, like on my sewing tables, on the (camp's) gun/china cabinet, etc. For my more refined pieces, I've always used this Sherwin Williams preca t lacquer and catalyst: https://www.flickr.com/photos/43836144@N04/

hink it is water based, since I thin it and clean-up with lacquer thinner.
It isn't water based. It is a very good product, and I actually have some in my shop now. That's a really good product and was an industry standard for years. It is easy to build a finish and control its application. To m e, its highest and best use is cabinets and vertical finish applications su ch as cabinets and furniture. Perfectly fine for table tops if it is somet hing like a lamp table or coffee table. Not the best for a high use table. Also, isn't that the old label from many years back? I seem to remember they changed a few years ago (might be mistaken), and not too sure it matte rs since catalyzed products seem to last a really long time on the shelf.

When you get there, check out some of their newer offerings. They are more yellow resistant, and have a higher abrasion quotient that makes them good for both vertical and horizontal surfaces like table tops. The newer fini shes don't require a sub coat or primer (yes!) and you can start straight a way with building your finishes. They should work fine over your shellac. Recoats are quick, and some even have great pot life. Mix, load the gun, seal in a container, and use from the container as needed. I buy cheap con tainers from the dollar store and Big Lots by the case.
Personally, I would take a look at the F3 Hi-Bild on this page. For even h arder use, I would look at their polyurethane. http://oem.sherwin-williams.com/products/wood/clear-wood-finishes
The problem with both finishes is that you have to buy another 5 gallon buc ket of the stuff to get any. SW doesn't always keep their website up to da te an they may have something new they are trying in your area. So go see the biggest store and ask them what you can get in a couple of gallons. If not, there certainly isn't a thing wrong with the stuff you have, just mak e sure your finished coating has a thickness of about 4-5 mil on the top.

ly when using old or salvaged lumber. I generally don't like lots of stra ight lines, straight/square cuts. I like lots of curves, which is one re ason I wanted live edges on the table top and the root balls used for the l egs.

Right there with you on that.

off to relatives, when they come for the family reunion.
To me, I don't see why you couldn't make that happen pretty easily if you a re shooting a product you know. It is impressive that you are spraying pre -cats, so that certainly shows some fluency with the equipment and material s.
When I have a project like that to spray, I do everything I can the night b efore, get up, make some coffee, the start coating. The first coat is usua lly a fast dry, then I apply the second coat in 30 minutes, then another on e in 30 more, then another in about an hour. During that hour, I get some breakfast. Depending on the pot life of the product (and the SW stuff you have qualifies) I shoot the last coat about an hour later, aiming to be thr ough with all spraying by 11 or so in the morning. Four wet coats should g et you where you need to go, and it is complete in one day.
You easily have enough time to do a test piece to determine your final thic kness and see how many coats you need to apply to get what you want. The g ood thing about a table is that you can put 3-4 coats on the legs and other structure pieces and put as much as you want on the top depending on how m uch protection you want. If that product you have is as old as I think it might be, it wouldn't hurt to test it out. Give your finish about 48 hours before using it and while it won't be at full cured strength, it will be fi ne for use.

bought a frig for the shop (validation: shop accessory), so that I don't ha ve to walk to the house to get a beer. Lately, Ive become too lazy to wal k that far, after stints of heated woodworking.

Any time. Glad to be of help. Down here in South Texas, we had a 107 degr ee day last week where I was working (outside on a roof repair no less) and I am really feeling every degree these days. Come on Fall!
Robert
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On Monday, August 17, 2015 at 12:49:54 AM UTC-5, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

harder use, I would look at their polyurethane.

ucket of the stuff to get any.
My local SW has both the Hi-Bild and Poly in gallon cans, about $40 a gallo n. The guy says the poly doesn't spray exactly like my Pre-cat lacquer, b ut I shouldn't have any problems spraying the poly. I'll do some practice spray-runs.
My present 5 gal precat lacquer was purchased 6-25-14. I've been using th is for at least 10 yrs., probably longer. I may switch to the Poly or the Hi-Bild for everything, if I can spray it as well as I've been spraying the lacquer. Either seems to be as cheap as the Varethane ($50 a gal.)
I got the table top sanded to 320 grit, last night. Have a few touch-up sp ots to sand, still. One leg unit still needs some 120 & 220 sanding. Hop e to spray this weekend, barring weather.... I spray outdoors.
And I'll need help carrying & setting up, the table top, outdoors (11.5' X 4' X 1 3/8").... it weighs about 250-300 lbs, I think. My help won't be av ailable until the weekend.
I think I'll have to build a stand for the top, to prop it up at an angle, to spray it. I don't think I can properly/conveniently spray it, if it's l ying flat.
Thanks. Sonny
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