Tung oil vs Danish oil

I used Tung oil once and had a rather bad experience. I used it on a nice piece of Birch Plywood and it looked great while applying it. Now... after a year it's still a little bit sticky and on the touch you can still smell tung oil. I rubbed, I buffed.... for no avail.... Now.. Is danish oil drying-hardening better ???
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Well, best answer is - depends.
Danish oil can be tung or linseed - even soy - based. But it contains driers and a bit of resin, too. Personally, I prefer non-tung oil because of the smell you mention and the sort of cloudy look it gives. Wiping varnishes, which you can buy or mix yourself, might be the best way to firm up that surface.

a
tung
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Before I get to where I THINK your big problem is I trust that when you rubbed... buffed to no avail you are talking about rubbing and buffing off all the excess oil at the time of application and not now, a year later.
Oil finishes, Danish oil included, is not a building surface finish, it is a finish meant to soak into the wood and cure there, with no real build up on the surface of the wood. Try to build an oil finish and most times it gets just like what you have now.
Which leads me to what I think is you main problem. In a word, plywood. A nice very thin piece of birch veneer laid over a non porous glue then some other wood and glue layers.
The key words here is non porous glue. There is, for all practical purposes, no wood for the oil to soak into. All it can do is sit there on top of that non porous layer of glue and sulk.
Your bad experience with oil is most likely due too a miss application of the finish.
My suggestion. Get a lot of mineral spirits and rags and wipe off all the oil you can get off then apply a real surface finish. Though, after some dedicated wiping, you may end up with a serviceable surface. Who knows.
No, in the case of plywood, while performance may be marginally better, it's still a miss application and will probably give you the same problem.
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Mike G.
Heirloom Woods
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Not sure if you've ever looked, but the "penetrating" oil finishes don't go very far. One ply is probably a limit.

purposes,
that
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Obviously you've never looked. Wood will soak up any liquid too the saturation point if you give it access too enough of it. It's called capillary action.
However, if you don't want to take my word for it try Bob Flexner's 'Understanding Wood Finishing"
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Mike G.
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Mike G wrote:

Capillary action works parallel to the grain, not perpendicular, and in any case plywood has barriers of plastic ("glue" they call it) between the plies.
Further, whether wood will soak up a particular liquid "to the saturation point" depends on the surface tension and viscosity of the liquid.

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Once oil gets soaked into the wood from the sides and enough liquid is supplied,capillary action is quite capable of transmitting it the fluid up and down the length of the stock. It DOES NOT have to enter from the ends.
Mercury may have a viscosity to resist the action but finishing oils do not.
That is why I added the reference, so I didn't have to get into a prolonged stupid argument. READ IT, you don't like it drop a line to Bob Flexner or better yet test it yourself.
And no shit the glue is a barrier, that's why I responded to the OP. READ IT.
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Mike G.
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Applies along the grain. Across, as in face grain, otherwise. And yes, I've bandsawn some to check. Have you?
Nice try.

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It applies to all the grain, the wood doesn't care if the fluid enters from the ends or the sides, the oil will be drawn along the length of the wood from the point of entry and until such time as the wood is saturated or the supply is gone.
Apply the oil to a thin piece of veneer as you would solid wood and the whole surface will be immediately saturated since it has nowhere to go and it will bleed out and remain sticky for some time.
Ah, but I forgot, you're an "expert". Read that, any kind of stupid argument is viable to prove you right. Moron!
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Mike G.
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Y'know, your argument makes me wonder why we bother use solvents and/or heat to reduce viscosity. OP didn't.
It's sort of a race, Mike, between dispersal - and the oil is too viscous to disperse by capillary action on its own - and its increasing viscosity due to cross-linking which blocks further dispersal. Y'see, if you knew much about capillary action you'd know that the surface tension of the liquid and the size of the capillary (opening) determine the rate and extent of the action. What's designed to transport water just doesn't do oil that well, especially as it clogs its own entrances so rapidly. Then, of course there's the real action of oil - expansion of the cells - which, sad to say, reduces the capillary size further. It is that action, however, which imparts the only real protection oil gives to a surface - a bit of liquid rejection. It's certainly not scratch-resistant. Why, you can scratch right through to bright wood with no problem.
Wonder what solvent it would take to carry some information into your head....

from
the
argument
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Mike G wrote:

So let's see, I apply one drop of oil to a thin piece of veneer and in a time too small to measure it becomes saturated? Do tell.

Ah, name calling, the first resort of the terminally ignorant.
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I ran into two problems. Both root of a solid miss application of tung oil.
1. I thought I can build up a sheen. 2. I used plywood.
I used mineral oil to wash of the excess which was still causing my problems (not much) A rag soaked into mineral spirits and a gentle rub got rid of the excess. Then I used a rub on varnish. That cured nicely over night and I will apply another layer next weekend after 0000'ing it. Already looks better and close to what I wanted to achieve in the first place.....
Thanks for your comments!
Rainer
PS: Any recommendations for wood dye ???
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Yup; that's what I figured. Notwithstanding all the discussion on capillary action and glue barriers, the real problem (as often happens) was what was not initially posted: he tried to build up a sheen with oil. But I guess that's better than having blocked capillaries:-)
Especially as Tung oil takes a long time to cure, and far longer yet if it penetrates deeply, and you don't know if he thinned it, and don't know the wood or the ambient temperature, so there's no way of telling if the oil will cure and clog the wood before it penetrates entirely through, which won't happen anyway since this is plywood, so please delete this entire paragraph and go cut some wood:-)
As an aside, one can build up a low sheen with oil, but that's more involved and takes us off topic a bit.
Now, regarding the dye, is this for new wood or maybe that already oiled wood? In either case, what type of wood and what top coat, or what do you want to achieve in the end? Without knowing that, any response is purely a shot in the dark.
GerryG

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Not at this point.
Patriarch
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