Peter, I’ve read of woodworkers using tung oil followed by wax. Often used to finish chairs, but how durable is it? Will the shine come off after a year of use? Will you have to buff it back to a nice shine every so often? Other than table tops can it and should it be used in most furniture applications? I’ve got so many questions.
I’ve been working in the kitchen cabinet industry for eight years and catalyst lacquers are the only thing used. Most finishers in the shops I’ve worked in do not know of other finishes. Nor do they know that you can lacquer or varnish over tung oil once dry. They think it will create fish eye.
It seems to me that oil brings out the figure more than any other product. I’m looking for a fast finish that is easy to use. I’ve experimented with tung oil followed by wiping varnish. That was easy. I used 5 padded coats, but lint is left behind which obsures the clarity of the finish. I’m using cotton rags. Is wiping varnish durable? Will it last for decades? Or is it so thin that it will wear faster? And is it really the master finish of equal parts linseed oil, spar varnish, turpentine. I have a hard time figuring this mixture out. How does the oil get a chance to dry it is stuck in the varnish?
I’ve used shellac from the can with a brush, man is that a long finish to apply. Rubbing it out sucks. It’s so much work. I can spend 60 hours building a piece and 20-30 finishing it. I rather not spend that much time finishing it. Too much sanding and rubbing. Also, with the rubbing my fingers get warm and leave their prints. I imagine its because the finish is old and no longer fully drying. Even though the can says I have two years of use after the printed date on the bottom of the can which is 2007.
Finally, I guess I’d like to know if the tung oil/wax finish is going to shine for years to come, and whether or not a linseed/spar/turpentine finish is really a wiping varnish? Thank you for your patience. I tend to ramble on when I write.