Finishing a Spinning Wheel

Discussion in 'Fiber Arts' started by Pearl B, Oct 17, 2012.

  1. Pearl B

    Pearl B Well-Known Member

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    Have any of you 'finished' a spinning wheel, and what did you use?

    There are a lot of products out there. Did you use oil or water base? Which product would you recommend for ease of use and choice of colors?

    Im thinking of doing the spinning wheel and some unfinished wood Ive got for a bedroom/house remodeling job Ive got going on.

    I would like a product you can wipe on with a cloth.

    For some reason I have a fear of polyurethane being that hard to apply stuff which results in a goopy dripping mess.



    TIA
     
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  2. SvenskaFlicka

    SvenskaFlicka Well-Known Member

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    It doesn't have a choice of colors, but I've used Tung oil before to finish wood, including my Niddy Noddy, some drop spindles, and a cedar chest. You can wipe it on with a cloth, or use a sponge brush, and it dries smooth, not sticky, and turns the wool a lovely golden color.
     
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  3. 7thswan

    7thswan Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I use a wax type wipe on. Howards, I buy it at Antique shops.
     
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  4. Pearl B

    Pearl B Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, SF, I keep coming across references for tung oil. I might just go with that. I am leaning towards a clear finish.

    That surprises me, you dont have to put anything else on to seal in the finish?
     
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  5. SvenskaFlicka

    SvenskaFlicka Well-Known Member

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    I don't put anything else on. I suppose you could, but it's fine.

    Now, on that cedar chest, I've been considering doing a second coat here, but it doesn't need it. I would just like it a bit darker than it is.
     
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  6. Pearl B

    Pearl B Well-Known Member

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    Thank you SF,

    Good luck with your cedar chest!!
     
  7. frazzlehead

    frazzlehead AppleJackCreek Supporter

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    You are right to fear polyurethane! THAT STUFF IS HORRIBLE!

    Okay, it has a place ... for say, the surface of an end table at a hotel, or a coffee table that will get a lot of use.

    Wheels deserve a lovely finish. Tung Oil is nice, I am a fan of the 'tung oil finish' or 'Danish Oil Finish' ... actually Watco Danish Oil is my finish of choice. As in, my floors, my walls, and all my wheels. :)

    CAREFULLY dispose of all your rags ... they really can spontaneously combust. Just lay them flat outside or hang them on a fence to dry where if they do poof into flame nothing will ignite (on the driveway is good, I hang them over the wire fence to the pasture till dry). Work with ventilation. Wear THICK gloves, like for washing dishes. Old socks are great for applicators. :)
     
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  8. Marchwind

    Marchwind Fiber Arts forum Mod. Supporter

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  9. lathermaker

    lathermaker Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I used 2-3 coats of Tung oil on my Ashford Country Spinner. I let it dry a day between coats.

    Here's what you do to end up with a nice satin smooth finish.
    1: sand all the pieces
    2: use a "tack cloth" to get off all the dust and grime. you need to do this in between every coat.
    3: Apply a thin layer of Tung oil using a cloth or brush. I used those cheap foam brushes.
    4: Let dry a day
    5: Lightly sand to get rid of any dust or bubbles that came up with the wet Tung oil. I used 0000 steel wool or those buffing pads they sell with the refinishing products.
    6: Use the Tack cloth again to pick up dust.
    7: Apply another layer
    then follow the directions for how many coats you want to do.

    I applied 3 coats to the wheel itself, then 2 coats to the rest. I has a beautiful smooth finish where the pattern of the wood shows through.
     
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  10. Pearl B

    Pearl B Well-Known Member

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    Thank you Frazzle, Marchwind, and lathermaker!

    Frazzle, I read the warnings about the rags last night, when I was checking this out on the net. I will definitely be careful! Its the only reason Im slightly leary of oil.

    Lather, what sandpaper did you use in step #1?

    The wood I will be using it on is alder & birch.

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I was going to go with a clear coat till I came across a pic. Its a copyrighted image so I can only post a link.

    Im trying to figure out what color they used to come up with this.

    IMG_6256 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
     
  11. frazzlehead

    frazzlehead AppleJackCreek Supporter

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    That looks like one of the cherry stains, though it's probably a cherry wood, underneath, or something that is in those reddish tones.

    Oil stains bring out the best in wood and are totally worth the trouble. :)

    If you have spare wood you can test on that, otherwise you can try on the underside of the table just to see how it's gonna look before you commit yourself.

    My personal favourite is Watco Dark Walnut .. makes a lovely rich brown on pine, even darker on darker woods, but never so dark as to hide the grain. :)
     
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  12. lathermaker

    lathermaker Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I can't find any of the sandpaper that I used for sanding the first time, but I know it was very fine and black colored. My wheel didn't take much sanding at all. I just knocked off some of the sharp edges and rough spots. Remember to sand WITH the grain, not against it or you'll end up with scratches.
     
  13. Pearl B

    Pearl B Well-Known Member

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    Thank you every one!!

    I found the person who painted that wheel. Im going to contact them and see if they will tell me what they used.
     
  14. Marchwind

    Marchwind Fiber Arts forum Mod. Supporter

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    The finishes/stains on that wheel look like they are cherry and either mahogany or walnut
     
  15. Falls-Acre

    Falls-Acre Well-Known Member

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    I finished my own wheel, and it was partially handpainted, which worried me as far as finishes went. I went and talked to a wood specialist at a local wood store we have here and we talked about tung oil... the main issue with it being that you shouldn't use it full strength because it takes forever (and a day) to completely dry. I also wanted something that wouldn't need to be re-applied too terribly often (tung oil does need re-application) to be effective. After talking with this man at length, he showed me a few different options, depending on how I wanted the finished piece to look, how water-resistant I wanted it to be, etc. He also showed me some (very beautiful!) examples of some woods he had there with the different finishes.

    I personally finally settled on a natural finish of a combination beeswax and some kind of thick oil (the can is out in the shed at the moment). It's a thick paste that liquifies at the heat of your hand, wipes on with a cloth, and buffs up to a nice sheen. It does need re-application occasionally, but the item can be used almost immediately. The longer you leave the wax on the wood, the better it soaks in, I left it overnight, then wiped it off and buffed the next day. I was worried about the handpainting, but didn't need to be. The wax went right overtop and never even smudged it!

    If you want, I can look tomorrow and get you the name of the stuff I used. It's not rare or anything.
     
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  16. lathermaker

    lathermaker Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I use the Tung oil full strength. It takes a day to dry on the first coat, much less on subsequent coats. I've never heard of cutting it with something else to use it.......
     
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  17. 7thswan

    7thswan Well-Known Member Supporter

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    This is what the stuff i use,must be made of. I also got a small can of this wax/oil with the wheel I orderd from Rick Reeves, so figured it was good. Gives the wood a warm look . I reaply a couple times of year and never have problems with changes due to humity and heating with wood.
     
  18. neparose

    neparose Well-Known Member

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    I know this will make the finishing conesuiers scream but I did my wheel with high gloss spray laquer. I used minwax stain in maple, puritan pine, and walnut. Rubbed it in good and put on enough coats to get the colors I wanted, let dry then sprayed it. The small pieces got hung by wire on a clothes line so I could get at all sides. After 2 coats of the laquer, I sanded with the black sand paper, wiped down with acetone and kept on spraying coats on till I got the "depth" I wanted. I probally could have done a better job, but I was heavily under the influence of wool at the time, and wanted to get spinning immediately!lol!
    Rose
     
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  19. Pearl B

    Pearl B Well-Known Member

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    Thank you everyone, :bow:

    What Im going to do is make a copy of this thread and get some scrap wood thats the same as the wheel and just experiment with it and see what works out the best. :drum:
     
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  20. SvenskaFlicka

    SvenskaFlicka Well-Known Member

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    I have never cut Tung oil with anything, and never had to wait very long for it to dry... overnight? Just to be safe?

    Of course, I put on a thin coat.
     
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