Finishing blanket chest.
Outside sanded through 0000 steel wool and then tung oil.(4 coats thinned to
Inside using amber shellac because I'm not crazy about oils in contact with
Question is.....how far do I go so that shellac will bond well. 150? 180?
Planning on 3 coats. sanded between coats.
A very fine "abrasive" ... there are "film" type abrasives that work equally
as well, but a brown paper bag is a whole lot cheaper. I use the paper from
a grocery bag to rub down the final coat on all the shellacked pieces I
A bit. The exterior will be tung oil but the interior shellac. Hopefully
I will be able to keep the two apart.
I plan on applying the shellac first ( to the interior only) then the oil to
. That way I hope to sand any overage shellac off where the oil will be.
I would rather not have any oil finish in the storage area.
Bond well? Shellac is and evaporative finish. This means that when you
apply one coat of evaporative finish on top of another, the solvent of the
new coat partially dissolves the previous coat, and thus forms a bond
Generally the first coat of shellac is going to penetrate into the
wood, depending on the shellac "cut" (dilution). The solvent is
alcohol and that will soak into most woods enough to establish a
"bond" at relatively high grit numbers.
What kind of wood is the inside (closed pore or open pore)? Do you
want a very smooth glossy finish?
The higher the last grit of sandpaper, the smoother the wood and the
harder it is for a liquid to penetrate. For the inside of a chest, I
think I'd stop at 180, again, depending on the type of wood and how
smooth you want the finish.
And by the way, the best thing to do is try the finish on some scraps
first. No sense guessing when dealing with a finish.
Why would it be more difficult for the finish to penetrate at higher grits?
The pores are still going to be there at the same density and the same pore
diameter.?. The only thing that has changed is that the scratches left by
the lower grits are finer. Why would 'finer' scratches produces less
penetration of an alcohol soluble finish? Unless I am mistaken, most of the
finish is going to penetrate into pores, not scratches.
Extremely high grits are more prone to burnishing the wood, which will
harden and tighten the fibers to the point where a high viscosity finish has
a difficult time penetrating.
Shellac works like water, because of its polar solvent, so it's the
equivalent of that water wipe you use to set up those fibers and break the
case-hardening. Sand until you're happy, apply the first coat of shellac,
and you'll still have to dewhisker a bit.
Do a test, but I wouldn't worry. Shellac will stick to oily wood
than anything else except oil. I've never had it not stick when
polishing with a mineral oil - pumice prep. The shellac sinks under
oil, displacing it to be wiped off with naptha as the final step.
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