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Month: May 2016

The Role of Flatting Agent in Creating Sheen

The Role of Flatting Agent in Creating Sheen

The sheen of a finish is the degree of light reflection when a surface is viewed at a low angle. In a high sheen or high gloss surface, you see glare or a distinct reflected image. In a low sheen, satin or flat surface, glare and reflection are softened to the point...

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TIP: Wipe Stain, Don’t Brush

The rule for applying stain evenly is to apply a wet coat and wipe off the excess before the stain dries. With faster drying stains such as water-based stain, dye stain and lacquer stain, it’s not possible to get the stain applied fast enough on large surfaces if you...

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TIP: Testing for Fish Eye

Fish eye is a term that describes the ridging or cratering of a newly applied finish; the finish refuses to lay down flat. Fish eye is common during refinishing because it is caused by the low-surface-tension silicone oil contained in many furniture polishes getting...

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TIP: Boiled Linseed Oil isn’t Boiled

Boiled linseed oil isn’t raw linseed oil that has been boiled. You can’t make boiled linseed oil simply by heating it. Boiled linseed oil, which is sometimes abbreviated “BLO,” is raw linseed oil with metallic driers added. These driers act as catalysts to speed the...

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TIP: Metamarism

The light source makes a big difference for how your finished wood projects appear. It’s important to be aware of this if you are working on a project in your shop under one light source and then moving the project to another light source. Look at the four...

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TIP: Test for Good Bond

There are a couple of good tests you can perform to see if a finish you are using bonds well to whatever is underneath—oily wood, stain, filler glaze or whatever. The better test is called the “cross-hatch” test. Using a razor blade or box cutter score the finish (on...

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TIP: Water-Based Finish Over Oil Stain

If you want to use an oil stain and apply a water-based finish over it, the best practice is to let the oil stain dry thoroughly before applying the finish—for at least several days and maybe a week in a warm room. Oil stains vary in how fast they dry, so the only way...

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TIP: Shellac and Water Rings

Shellac has a bad reputation for water marking, but it’s actually impossible to water mark a shellac finish, except with very hot water, unless the shellac used for the finish is old when the shellac is applied, or the shellac on the wood has aged considerably. As...

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Coloring Wood Overview

Coloring wood usually presents the biggest challenge in the wood finishing process because more can go wrong. By organizing and defining the major differences in the woods, the various types of products used to color wood and the application methods, you can see the...

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TIP: Pouring Solvent from a Can

Pouring The trick to pouring solvent from a full or nearly full can without getting the liquid all over the place is to hold the can with the spout near the top rather than the bottom. With the spout near the top of the can, air can enter easily to fill the void left...

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