I am in the process of finishing a birdseye maple tabletop. I wiped on
the first several coats of poly...the last coat was brushed on with a
sponge. There are 4 or 5 little hairs caught in the finish. You can
only see them from certain angles.....but they look gigantic to me. I
am a real rookie at finishing, and am looking for suggestions on how to
remove them without making it worse...sanding?....exacto blade?
Any help would be appreciated!
Try using a sewing needle in a pin vice to remove the hairs, then (with the
finish hard) use a utility knife blade (just the blade, no knife) as a
scraper to level the area. Then one more clean coat should fix 'er up.
The utility knife blade scraper also works good for removing runs and dust
pimples from the finish. The finish has to be hard - takes longer to cure
at a sag or pimple! - and it takes a light touch with the blade lightly
flexed, but does a real nice job. Single edge razor blades are too thin &
don't work as well (for me at least).
Okay, some of you old time wRECkers wake up! I remember someone posting a
long time ago about a miniature plane using razor blades made specifically
for planing off runs in paint. It was actually from an automobile finishing
specialty catalog. Thought I had it saved, but can't locate it.
This would be slick for curing your problem.
The only road to success is always under construction.
I don't know if I posted it or not, but that's how I remove runs. It's
not really a plane, however, more like a scraper:
Take a straight blade, hold it on a 45 degree or so angle to some fine
sandpaper, like 1500. Run it across the paper, pulling the away from
the blade, and on the opposite side of where the paper is rubbing, a
little curl will develop.
To remove the run, hold the curl against the run and lightly pull the
blade, again, away from the sharp edge. The curl will scrape the run
until it's on the same plane as the rest of the work.
The finish MUST be hard to do this.
"NOTME" <zeddrei AT hotmail DOT com> wrote in message
I've got a couple of these lying around. They're ok, but they aren't as
useful as you might think from looking at them. You can get them at any
autobody supply house for 1/2 the price in the link above. You'll still end
up finishing out the run with wet sandpaper and a block. I generally find
that just carefully using a razor blade is more effective than the tool.
The tool really only works on quite small runs.
I don't have any advice on getting the hair out...
But it is entirely possible that no one but you will see them and you should
forget about it.
A couple years ago I build a dog feeder/storage bin out of birdseye maple
and walnut. For some idiotic reason I used a plain butt joint, and it
looked like crap. Everyone told me how beautiful it was, but what do they
know. I routed a 1/16th off the end grain an put some edge veneer on;
sanded it down and refinished it. It looks so so much better; not perfect,
but much better. Several people who saw it before and after can't tell the
Frank.... before doing anything drastic, try buffing the whole table top with
very fine steel wool (preferably the synthetic type) as you would use between
coats of your poly....
Use a little water if you feel like it's not "sliding" enough...
If you get lucky, that will flatten and smooth the area enough so that only you
will notice it... and even if you sanded off the finish and redid it, you'd
STILL see the hairs there.. *g*
I've found that a lOT of time and stress can be saved by asking one or more
people for an opinion.. don't mention the defect that you see like it's in a
spot light, just ask them to see if they can see any problems or things that
should be fixed... they usually don't find anything there but the beauty of the
I think he recommended synthetic. Real steel wool can cause problems with
oak and other woods with a high tanin content. A rust or black spot can
appear after steel wool fibers are caught in the pores of the wood and
moisture gets involved. I never use steel wool if I'm using a water borne
finish. Oil finishes don't particularly care.
I haven't used "steel" steel wool for years.. lol
I use that gray stuff that looks like a scotch brite pad... "steel wool
I don't think the water is a solvent, is it? (well, maybe the water around here
is hard enough to be)
I use it for a wet sanding effect, to help carry away the particles to avoid
them building up and scratching the surface...
then again, I'm mostly a turner and my flat work really sucks.. *g*
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