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Finishing the Finish

Finishing the Finish

“A finish should invite you, it should ask to be rubbed and touched and it should feel like warm butter.” Of any single thing that has been the definitive selling point for my furniture through the years, it has been the finish. Proper equipment, skill and environment...

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Wood Prep and the Look of a Finish

Wood Prep and the Look of a Finish

The way you prepare the wood for finishing, whether by sanding as most do, or by scraping or planing as some do, has no affect on the way the wood will look with the finish applied. Different finishes add more or less color to the wood, but if you aren’t staining the...

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HVLP for the Win! The Bulkhead

HVLP for the Win! The Bulkhead

You know, that wooden or big steel monstrosity with the rusty, peeling Bilco doors that swing up and open to your basement. As a residential painter, I usually find the bulkhead to be one of the ugliest items around the outside of my customer’s homes. So if you have...

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TIP: Washboarding

TIP: Washboarding

The accompanying picture shows a very bad case of “washboarding,” the compressions left by jointers and planers, especially when they are not adjusted well, as is the case here. Washboarding is highlighted by a stain; it isn’t disguised or hidden. So it has to be...

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Remove Watermarks With Steel Wool

Watermarks can happen in all finishes after they have aged and become somewhat porous. The marks appear light gray to white and are almost always very superficial – that is, right at the surface of the finish. So one way to remove them that almost always works well is...

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TIP: How to choose a sandpaper grit

Sandpaper grits vary from very coarse to very fine. How do you choose which grit to use for any given situation? The answer is actually quite simple. In all cases you are using the sandpaper to remove a problem. So choose a grit that removes that problem efficiently...

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TIP: Sanding with a Random Orbit Sander

TIP: Sanding with a Random Orbit Sander

There are two large categories of random orbit sanders: electric and pneumatic (compressed air.) Both work well, though you need a fairly large compressor to power a pneumatic sander adequately. Random orbit sanders are easy to use; you don’t need much instruction....

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TIP: Sand Oil Finish Wet

TIP: Sand Oil Finish Wet

For the ultimate in smooth feel with an oil or oil/varnish-blend finish, sand the finish between coats while it is still wet—that is, before wiping off the excess. You can use any grit sandpaper, but the finer grit you use, the smoother the result. I like to use...

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