Where and Why you can use wax containing silicon(e)

The recent thread on waxing a saw table and the repeated frantic warnings there in about the evils of silicone, or is it silicon, I can never remember which is which, well, no matter, suffice to say it got me thinking about the stuff and I thought I'd add a little clarification for the newbies.
Silicon(e) is tenacious stuff and if it did get on your saw table or any tool for that matter it is not only difficult to get rid of but it will transfer to any wood passing over the contamination.
In regards to finishes, what happens is that when a finish is applied over the silicon(e) the stuff leeches into the finish and reduces the surface tension of the finish in the finish over the contaminated area causing fish eye. Not a good thing
Now I'm not advocating using anything with silicone and feel it should not be used as a lubricant in a wood shop. However, when you stop and think about, it not using a wax because it may contain silicone is somewhat like the warning not to use steel wool when using water based finishes. The blanket warnings overlooks the whole story.
Steel wood can be safely used on a water based finish ON and AFTER the last coat has cured since the water causing rust has evaporated. Likewise, by the time you get to applying a wax containing silicone to a finish your finish is on, cured and you are long past the point where the silicon(e) will cause any problem. Silicon(e) has no adverse effect on a finished finish.
In other words, with a little care to isolate the wax from getting spread all over the shop there is absolutely no reason why you can't use your favorite car wax or other polish, silicon(e) or no, to bring out the shine and protect your finial finish.
Just a thought, have fun with it.
--
MikeG
Heirloom Woods
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Silicone is used as a lubricant. Silicon is a substance found in glass and is use in the computer industry.

The problem with that anoligy is that silicone typically can not be seen after the delivery medium has evaporated. You don't kow where it will end up. Still, I have to go with the idea of keeping it out of the shop.

Think about that again. If you use steel wool between coats of a water based finish, you will have small pieces of the steel wool break off and lodge or imbed into the pores of the wood. Red Oak having large pores is especially bad about traping small pieces of steel wool in the pores. Regardless of how well you think that you wipe, tack, or blow off the surface, the pieces that are trapped in the pores or the joints will rust when the next water based coat goes on. Better to use Sctoch Brite pads to scuff the previous layer.

True but not between coats.

Granted you can use a wax on a finished surface but as with your opening paragraph, you do not want to use it to reduce friction or protect you TS table top.

I am not sure that that was ever in question or an issue.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Leon wrote:

More precisely, "silicon" is an element from which various compounds may be constructed--its chemistry is complex and the range of silicon-based compounds is almost as great as the range of organic compounds. "Silicone" is a large family of polymers based on a silicon-oxygen backbone, some of which are useful as lubricants, some as adhesives, some as sealants, and so on.

I don't see any analogy there, you both said pretty much the same thing in different words.

My concern with using silicone on top of a cured finish is that you're likely to have a mess on your hands if you ever need to repair that finish.

While it's true that with care you can use silicone waxes, why bother using something that requires that level of care when there are other waxes that work as well and do not present that same risk of contamination?
--
--John
Reply to jclarke at ae tee tee global dot net
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Yeah....
Yeah... You can store rat poison right in there with your other herbs and spices and it will be totally safe as long as you don't accidentally use it in your food preparation. Why take the chance? Keep it totally out of the picture and eliminate that constant.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I'm not so sure I agree. In a perfect world, silicone polishes/waxes would not penetrate a film finish. Unfortunately, over time, it will eventually penetrate the micropores that eventually form in the finish. I am assuming that a silicone containing polish is used regularly. Even when stripping off the finish, measures would have to be taken to keep the silicone on the surface from contaminating the stripped wood. Basically, the silicone creates more work. Having said the above, many professional furniture refinishers automatically assume that all furniture has been contaminated with silicone and take the appropriate measures both when stripping off the finish and again when applying a new one.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.