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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Central Coast, NSW
    Posts
    3,148

    Default Help with wax or oil finishes please

    Hi there. I have a two boxes that I need to finish. One is Fijian mahogany/mahogany burl and the other is Queensland maple/Macassar ebony. I want a finish on them which is low to mid gloss - has some body, but not thick and gluggy like diy-level varnishes or polys. I especially dont want to see brush or lap marks.

    I dont have time for French polishing and probably couldnt do it on these items anyway.

    Looking through the cupboard for things which might be relevant, I find some Feast and Watson sanding sealer, u Beaut Polishes EEE ultra shine and some Mastertouch carnauba wax (for lighter coloured timbers, apparently). I am a complete ignoramous about wax finishes, so dont really know if these are useful. I also have a range of polys and varnishes which I would be happy to use on large objects or built-in furniture but not on little delicate things which people typically inspect up real close.

    Can anyone suggest what I should use to get this sort of finish. I have read about wax finishes many times, but never really understood it. Do you just put the wax on the bare timber and polish hard ?

    If a wax finish is not right, is there some other solution. Danish oil or rubbing poly ? I think I've used these in the past and all they did was darken the timber. No gloss and no body. Did I do something wrong ?

    hoping someone can sort this out for me. Apologies if this question is repetitive, I did do a search but found nothing which gels with me.
    cheers
    Arron

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Toowoomba Q 4350
    Posts
    9,217

    Default

    Hi Arron,

    Option 1. get yourself some Minwax Wipe on Poly, satin or gloss. Sand your piece up to 320 or 400, clean up all dust on the box, apply two coats, letting dry between, a very light cut back with 400, clean up the dust, apply another two coats, drying between, cut back with 800, another two coats, or stop when you are happy with the finish. If you like, you could then EEE it and then wax it.

    Option 2. Use shellac on the boxes, doesn't have to be french polished, just applied carefully and quickly so that you don't get brush or lap marks. Apply a couple of coats, cut back, clean up, apply another couple of coats, cut back, clean up, one last coat, dry, EEE it, then wax it.

    There's lots I've left out, but if it doesn't make any sense, let me know and I'll detail it out for you.


    cheers
    Wendy

  4. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Central Coast, NSW
    Posts
    3,148

    Default

    Thanks Ruffly, I appreciate the reply.

    Can you clarify:

    In scenario 1, what is the purpose of the EEE. Is it just a fine cut and polish ?If so what does it do that some 1200 paper wont.

    and what is the purpose of the wax. Does it really make a difference over wipe on poly ? I have tried wax over normal poly and it didnt seem to do anything useful ???

    cheers
    Arron

  5. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Central Coast, NSW
    Posts
    3,148

    Default Progress to date

    Well, taking Rufflys advice, I went to the hardware store to get some Minwax. Unfortunately they were sold out of the gloss version, and as time was too limited to travel to another hardware store, I looked around for an alternative, choosing F&W Fine buffing oil (Feast Watson - Interior Clear Finishes & Oils - Fine Buffing Oil). I chose this because its recommended to go over F&W sanding sealer, a product I rather like using because you can slosh it on any way you like and never seem to end up with brush or lap marks. Also it dries quickly so you can get three or four coats on in a day.

    So after 2 coats of varnish sealer and one coat of buffing oil the boxes are looking pretty good. I buffed it up with the car polisher thing and I'm pretty happy with it - all except the flat top on the mahogany box which is very porous veneer and looking a bit patchy. Perhaps more sanding sealer was required there.

    cheers
    Arron

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Toowoomba Q 4350
    Posts
    9,217

    Default

    Good on you Aaron! you've taken the suggestions, worked them to suit the situation and what is available and have come out trumps

    re scenario 1: I find that my shellacing skills, whilst much, much better than what they oonce were, are still not where I'd like them to be, so I find using EEE to (yes) cut and polish very effective in getting a surface that I am then happy to wax with Trad wax. the EEE isn't a wax to finish with as it will dull very quickly. The trad wax I've now worked out how to apply it and get that lovely silken soft feel to the finish.

    EEE vs 1200 grit sandpaper
    I've found the EEE to be better than 1200.

    Each box or timber can be different though and I've learnt that some need additional surface preparation while others simply don't.

    No, you don't have to wax the WOP, but sometimes I will, it just depends on if I've used satin and a glossy finish is needed or not...

    cheers
    Wendy

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Valentine, NSW
    Posts
    9

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by RufflyRustic View Post
    EEE vs 1200 grit sandpaper
    I've found the EEE to be better than 1200.
    From the EEE site i found this
    "<small>If you sand to 240 grit then use EEE it will give you about the equivalent of sanding with 2,000+ grit or more. The higher grit abrasive paper you use before using EEE the better your finish will be. If you sand to 1200 - 1500 grit and then use EEE you will get about the equivalent of sanding up to somewhere between 20,000 & 30,000 grit depending on the material you are working on ant the length of time you are prepared to put into the application (rubbing).."

    Im going down that path after 4 coats of Varnish.

    What is the last coat of polish/wax BTW - thats what i wanna know?

    Mark

    </small>

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Toowoomba Q 4350
    Posts
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    Default

    Thanks Mark

    My last coat of polish/wax? On shellac, the last coat will be Trad Wax. When using WOP, most of the time it will be WOP.

    cheers
    Wendy

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