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  • Stupid Human Tricks, Finishing

    This is a "Do As I Say, Not Do As I Do" thread.

    This morning, I laid on an application of wiping varnish to a table top. Actually the bottom of it. Later, I went down to the shop, scuffed it with a gray non-woven pad (000 steel wool equivalent) and laid on another application. I was in a bit of a hurry today and didn't notice the applicator dragging until I had finished and I could see the applicator streaks in the finish. It should have been just wet with flow out. Stood there like an idiot for a few minutes and looked at the clock. In my haste, I had not waited for the first application to cure. The clock told me I had not waited four hours before performing this stupid act and the mineral spirits in the varnish had softened the first coat and left the streaking. I've only been using this finishing technique for several decades and know better. Now, because of my apparent feeble mind, I am leaving a sticky note on the finish can with the date/time of last application so I don't create more work and delay for myself. It really twists my shorts as I've been finishing multiple pieces like this for the last few weeks and this is the first time I didn't let the finish cure before going forward.
    Jim Frye
    The Nut in the Cellar.

  • #2
    I feel for you. Nothing like our own trusted "routines" and normal "patterns" interrupted my our own presumptions gone haywire!

    "Why did I do that?"
    Hank Lee

    Experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted!

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Jim Frye View Post
      This is a "Do As I Say, Not Do As I Do" thread.

      This morning, I laid on an application of wiping varnish to a table top. Actually the bottom of it. Later, I went down to the shop, scuffed it with a gray non-woven pad (000 steel wool equivalent) and laid on another application. I was in a bit of a hurry today and didn't notice the applicator dragging until I had finished and I could see the applicator streaks in the finish. It should have been just wet with flow out. Stood there like an idiot for a few minutes and looked at the clock. In my haste, I had not waited for the first application to cure. The clock told me I had not waited four hours before performing this stupid act and the mineral spirits in the varnish had softened the first coat and left the streaking. I've only been using this finishing technique for several decades and know better. Now, because of my apparent feeble mind, I am leaving a sticky note on the finish can with the date/time of last application so I don't create more work and delay for myself. It really twists my shorts as I've been finishing multiple pieces like this for the last few weeks and this is the first time I didn't let the finish cure before going forward.
      15 years ago when I cracked open my first can of poly, I had no clue what to do - the instructions said to lay a thin coat, wait, sand, and repeat. I dismissed all that and decided just one thick coat would do. It ended up in a horrendous hack job, leading me to read up and understand the finishing process better.

      From then to now I am much improved in finishing, but still have ways to go before I can call myself 'confident' of the end result, because of the many factors that can totally turn a simple process into a mess of retract / fix / redo. This post of yours will be a good reminder for me too to follow instructions upfront instead of trying to fix later. Thanks!
      It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
      - Aristotle

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      • #4
        Finally got around to correcting my mistake. The brush marks were so deep, I had to lightly block sand the entire surface with 220 grit until the marks were gone. Then I went over everything with a 1/4 sheet orbital sander with a green non-woven (00) abrasive pad. Then a wipe down with a tack cloth followed by laying on a good application of 50/50 polyurethane.
        Jim Frye
        The Nut in the Cellar.

        Comment

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