I've installed a couple of stair handrails in my house. They are made of
pine which I have stained. What would be the most suitable finish: button
polish, or teak oil or is the difference insignificant?
I tried using something called Antique Oil from B&Q but it didn't go off
properly for some reason. It ended up drying to a kind of waxy finish that
I could scratch away with a finger nail, and that was after about a month
of drying. I ened up removing it all. Maybe it was past its use-by date or
Best finish is "Patina", a gel polyurethane. Screwfix used to have it,
now I have to buy it in Lancashire, where they make it.
Otherwise a danish oil (an oil varnish blend) will work pretty well,
as a compromise between a hardened film-forming oil and a varnish.
Shellac (your button polish) is too shiny & slippery for grip on a
Teak oil is a non film-forming oil - i.e. one that sinks right in.
Doesn't look too bad in some cases, but it will only last at all on a
good tropical hardwood. On softwood, even on most UK hardwoods,
there's not enough of a robust surface to it. It's also a rip-off
price! If you want oil (and it's not justified on pine, even if your
handrails are actually pine rather than the more likely hemlock or
spruce) then a commecially blend tung oil base is a better starting
point. Try Liberon's "Finishing Oil".
That explains the problem. I initially applied some acrylic spray laquer,
which I ran out of, and then applied the Antique oil, thinking "Well, it's
just a kind of thin varnish, so why not?"
You live and learn! I will start again from scratch.
Thanks also to Andy for the Tung oil suggestion.
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