Join Mitch Kohanek as he demonstrates trade secrets of fine finishing at a location near you.
Saturday, November 3, 2007
9:00-12:00 The Stonegate Conference Center
2401 West Higgins Rd. Hoffman Estates, IL 60169 (847) 884-7000
Saturday, December 1, 2007
9:00-12:00 Long Beach City College, Pacific Coast Campus
Room MM118 1305 E. Pacific Coast Hwy. Long Beach, CA 90806 (562) 938-3064
Saturday, December 8, 2007
9:00-12:00 The Enterprise Center at Burlington County College
3331 Route 38 Mt. Laurel, NJ 08054 (856) 222-2500
Mitch Kohanek has been an instructor for the National Institute of Wood Finishing at Minnesota's Dakota County Technical College for 30 years. Mitch has completed an internship at the Smithsonian Conservation Analytical Laboratory and is a member of the American Institute of Conservation. Graduates from Mitch's program become the best professional finishers, finish restorers, spot repair artists and pre-finishers this country has to offer. As the only certified finishing program in America, Mitch's program has been featured in American Woodworker, Fine Woodworking and Better Homes and Gardens l/VOOD magazines. For more information on his unique finishing program, visit www.woodfin-ishing.org. Mitch also serves as a consultant to the finishing industry, and generously shares his finish knowledge with woodworkers around the country at shows and events.
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As woodworkers, we love wood; the look, the touch and even the smell. When building a project we carefully measure, cut, joint and fit all the parts, striving to match their grain and color, so our project looks like it came from one magnificent piece of wood. The process can be very satisfying.
When it comes to finishing, however, we often feel differently. It's often a love-hate relationship. We love the beauty that a good finish adds, but hate the risk that finishing often involves. We know from experience that if not done correctly, the finishing phase can ruin the look of a project. Picking the wrong stain color or getting runs in the topcoat are just a couple of problems that haunt the finishing process.
To improve your chances for success you should ask yourself two questions before you even pick up your brush. First, how do you want the finished wood to look? Do you want to showcase the wood's natural color or change it? Do you want a pristine appearance or an antique look? Second, how much protection does the wood need? Will the project be inside or outside? Does it have to stand up to hard daily use—a kitchen tabletop, for example—or will it be rarely touched, such as a grandfather clock?
Probably the most common approach to finishing involves staining the wood and topcoating it with clear finish. It's straightforward and usually produces very good results. But there are several other options worth considering, especially if you want to add a professional look to your finish.
This Guide to Finishing will help you achieve that professional look. We've loaded it up with great finishing tips and techniques, such as ways to minimize blotches, how to get a glass-smooth finish and using stains and dyes to add depth and richness to your project. One final bit of advice before you charge off to your shop, and that is to always test your finishes on a scrap board of the same kind of wood before applying it to your final project. Then once you've mastered the technique, you'll be ready to confidently tackle your masterpiece.
When the finishing is complete, you'll be able say with pride and satisfaction that your project is finely finished!
Until next time,
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