Tung vs Linseed

Okay, I guess I'm looking for some "old school" finishing tips here. I'm in the process of building a large work bench, will be using it for a variety of projects, and want to protect it from spills, stains, etc. I don't want (or need) a glossy finish, I'm just looking for something to protect the wood.
I've considered Linseed oil and I've even thought about Tung oil, but never have used either of them on the top of a work bench before, I'm not sure which might be the better choice.
The bench is pine construction with a top of 5/8" quality grade plywood. I don't care if it darkens, in fact I think that process may provide some "personality" to the bench. I'm simply trying to avoid a mistake.
Can anyone provide me any "war stories" of having finished the top of work bench that might guide me to an intelligent decision? Thanks.
M2C1
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M2C1 wrote:

Six of one, half a dozen of the other...
--

dadiOH
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M2C1 wrote:

Oil, plenty of it. Scrape off the gunk as needed, re-oil frequently. Oil is more resilient than varnish as it doesn't form a surface film to flake. It's not a perfect glossy finish, but hey, it's a workbench.
Linseed is cheaper than tung but will yellow badly after a summer. If you care....
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but it is barely a finish at all with regards to protection.
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My bench has a plywood top also. I used BLO when I built it about 8 years ago. I remember thinking that it looked too good to use as a workbench, but that feeling didn't last long. Since then, whenever I have a project being finished with oil or some kind of "Danish oil" I rub the bench or some other wooden shop fixtures down with the rags I used on the project before I lay them out to dry for disposal. I got that 'tip' here on the 'rec.
The benchtop now has a slight shine to it but it also does have a good number of stains, gouges, dents, etc. If your work habits are like mine, and especially if SWMBO or others in the house share the shop area and use the bench, in a few years you won't care so much about stains.
I do still get somewhat riled when someone _else_ leaves a bad gash or gouge in the bench, though.
--
Often wrong, never in doubt.

Larry Wasserman - Baltimore, Maryland - snipped-for-privacy@charm.net
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Hoping that top is thicker than 5/8. Dogs won't grab and stuff will bounce when sitting up top being persuaded by a mallet. Having it that thin would be a mistake.
Linseed is cheaper and smells better. Soak, wipe, week. One more soak, and then use a paper towel with linseed on it to pick up the dust when you clean it. Ought to be about once a year if the invisible top on my bench is an indication.
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The top on my plywood workbench is three layers of 3/4" cabinet grade plywood. And usually a solid-core scrap fire door, too.
$15 for the oops door, $75 for the plywood. It's solid.
No opinion on the finish, other than to say that 'it's a workbench!'
Patriarch
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"M2C1" wrote:
> Okay, I guess I'm looking for some "old school" finishing tips here. > I'm in the process of building a large work bench, will be using it for > a variety of projects, and want to protect it from spills, stains, etc. > I don't want (or need) a glossy finish, I'm just looking for something > to protect the wood. <snip> > > The bench is pine construction with a top of 5/8" quality grade > plywood.
I'd add at least 2 more layers of 5/8 plywood to adequately stiffen top then cover with a piece of 1/4 hardboard that can be replaced as needed.
Save the oil for another project.
Lew
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