Wipeon Drying

Oil finish gives cherry a rich tone, because of its amber color. However, cherry often contains figure that absorbs oil unevenly. The result is a mottled appearance. You'll either see this as part of cherry's appealing character or as unattractive blotches.

Tung oil. Danish oil and boiled linseed oil finishes soak into the wood, lodging in even the tiniest pores. As a result, cherry's super-absorbent spots and curly figure stand ouL The amber color of these finishes amplifies the effect. If you like mottled cherry, use a drying oil finish.

Wipe-ons are die most worry-free finishes to apply. They're dust-free and you don't have to contend with drips, sags, or brush marks. Wiping can be tedious work, though, and you'll have to safely dispose of oil-soaked rags.

Brush, pour or nib the oil 011 the wood, according the manufacturer's directions. Let die oil soak in, and then wipe all excess oil from the surface. After the first coat is completely dry, smooth the surface with very fine sandpaper or steel wool and apply a second coat. Once the wood has a uniform sheen, additional coats aren't necessary. These blends also contain solvents to make them easy to apply and driers to make them dry quickly. Wear gloves, a respirator and maintain adequate ventilation.

Pure drying-oil finishes contain only lung oil or linseed oil. They have no added driers or solvents, so they're safer to use, but they dry very slowly.

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Wood Working 101

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