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  1. Often people beginning struggle with finishing. They find one that usually works, then use that one on everything, whether it's the best fit or not. Sort of like using the same tool for every operation. In fact some non-woodworkers tend to think of every finish as "polyurethane" (I've had customers say this to many times about their factory furniture.) https://www.woodmagazine.com/woodworking-tips/techniques/finishing/3finishes
  2. Hey gang, welcome to the weekend. This is NRA convention weekend in Indiana but I was forced to stay home because I’ve been fighting a minor eye issue. I did get credentials though. I’ve been building some accessory cabinets for the local Elk’s lodge here in town and I just finished cabinet number 3 of 6. So, I have to ask, “Whats on your Patriot Woodworker agenda for the weekend?”
  3. Interesting article came across my feed this morning https://www.popularwoodworking.com/editors-blog/watco-waterlox-and-deft-are-known-by-their-brand-names-alone/?utm_content=buffere7d88&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer&fbclid=IwAR3kn-ONW0oZr0mDJMZ0EQG4LIxZZ-WdB30d7VQzFejf1viTl8Ed85Ny4Mg Couple of comments: Watco. It has gone through a number of owners since the original, Watco-Dennis was sued because some idiot burned down his house due to spontaneous combustion of the rags and sued them. The last I looked at the SDS it was roughly 2/3 mineral spirits, 2/9 linseed oil, and 1/9 varnish. Some versions have coloring added. Waterlox. If you look at their web site, they consistently talk about "tung oil" almost everywhere except for one obscure page that says something like "What we make is a varnish. It has always been a varnish." They have some new lines of products that I've not looked into nor used yet. So maybe that has disappeared." Deft has introduced a new line of waterborne finishes and the top line is still "Deft Clear Wood Finish" and you have to read the tertiary lines to determine if it's the solvent- or water-borne versions. Ripe for one of those clickbait, "Only 4% of people can pass this test, can you?"
  4. Here were are on the first day of March! The calendar says spring is on the way, the groundhog says that spring is on the way, but Mother Nature didn’t get the memo. We’re supposed to get 4 - 6 inches of the white stuff this weekend, but it is basketball sectional time in Indiana. Grandpa Dave will understand the previous statement. Speaking of basketball, our local team, the Blackford Bruins (22-4) take on the #1 ranked Delta Eagles (26 - 0) in the sectional tonight. Our Bruins have a Sophomore by the name of Luke Brown that is averaging 36 points a game and on track to breaking the state scoring record. Google it and watch his videos because he’s an amazing young man. As for woodworking, I’ve been trivet making this week and just started building a California king bed for a client. She’s not in a hurry and neither am I. So, what’s on your Patriot Woodworker Weekend Agenda?
  5. I spent about 4 hours yesterday wiping stain on three cabinets I'm building. I think there's about 7 sheets of plywood in there, plus some trim, and both insides and outsides and lots of little corners. I usually wipe on stains with a rag. That was working, but some of the surfaces had to be one vertically and there were lots of drips (luckily I had rosin paper and drop cloths down). To get into the concave crevices I finally got a foam brush. And about half-way through, I just started to use it on the vertical surfaces as it seemed to go faster. and fewer drips. But by the time I was done, it was pretty much shreds. While cleaning up, I remembered a tip to use a piece cut off a grout sponge. Duh! I had those in the next room where I keep finishes. I've used this for applying dyes but not for pre-canned stain. I'll remember that next time and save myself a lot of time and mess.
  6. A good comparison of linseed vs. tung oil One other difference is that if you apply subsequent coats of tung oil before what's there has fully cured, it will fog up and nothing will fix it except stripping and starting over. Be aware that many products are called Tung Oil Finish that are either linseed oil or linseed oil-varnish blends. If there is anything that looks like mineral spirits, aliphatic hydrocarbons, etc. in the SDS, it's probably the latter and not really tung oil. Blame the huckster Homer Formby for starting this massive mis-representation. On another forum this week someone asked about finish for a wooden cup. One responder recommended "organic flaxseed oil." I don't think he realized two things: - this is just another name for raw linseed oil, that the article states takes weeks to cure - that after a few weeks of curing, linseed oil has 0 moisture excluding efficiency See chart 16-3
  7. A collection of articles by Woodsmith on finishing. My only caution is that "pre-stain conditioners" don't always work as advertised, or as shown in the example. I just saved you $7.95
  8. A decent article on some furniture repair. This seems to work best on heavily colored finishes. https://www.ronhazelton.com/projects/how_to_repair_broken_corners_on_furniture?utm_source=Ron's+Weekly+Newsletter&utm_campaign=9a1da10e2d-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_02_03_12_43&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_39db751e08-9a1da10e2d-21654377 Is it too obvious that Minwax is a sponsor? There are much better touch up products -- Mohawk, Guardsman, etc. Lacquer based. I've done a few of these. I had a dog chew up a big section of base molding on a buffet cabinet once. It took several layers and a lot of carving and shaping to get it all back to looking good. When I showed it to the customer for approval, he said, "Wow, you sure got the color right." OK, 45 minutes of Bondo and shaping and a couple of minutes of spraying on a toner. Whatever, I'll take it.
  9. The big big thaw is on in east central Indiana! It’s a balmy 17 degrees and I suspect the robins will be flying in at any time. Last night the temps began to rise and we got 5 inches of snow. The coldest we got this week was -17 but it was bearable because I keep my shop heated. This week I had 2 major accomplishments other than staying warm. Last Monday, I braved the snow and picked up a Dewalt 735 planer 5hat I bought and I managed to complete a mantle for a client. I’ll install it next week and add a bit of trim to match. So, Patriot Woodworker’s, what’s on your weekend agenda?
  10. This was an oft-referenced article on Wood, then Steve's store,Hardwood Lumber & More, then Steve's personal site, all of which have gone away. I hope this is fair use: PAINT ON A CLEAR EXTERIOR FINISH By steve@AskHLM.com on 3/22/2014 Paint On A Clear Exterior Finish We woodworkers (especially when it comes to finishing) are creatures of habit; we use the finishes we use because they are the finishes that we have always used. But, from time to time it's good to step back and examine old "truths" just to see if they really are true. The use of marine varnish to finish exterior elements in non-marine applications is one of those "truths" that has long needed to be revisited. That is the purpose of this article. Several years ago when I began participating in the WOOD Magazine Finishing & Refinishing Forum we regularly saw questions from homeowners and others asking for advice on the best way to finish exterior doors, especially those exposed to the weather and subject to high UV. The options then were Helmsman Spar Urethane (and its polyurethane look-alike competitors), expensive marine varnish, and exterior paint. Over the years little has changed except that, thankfully, more and more woodworkers today understand just how poorly any finish that contains urethane resin will perform when exposed to UV. Even with only partial exposure to direct sunlight polyurethane will fail quickly, often peeling like a bad sunburn before the end of even a single season. Marine varnish, then as now, was the recommendation of choice offered by a number of contributors. There is no arguing that quality marine varnishes will outperform polyurethane "spar varnishes" if UV resistance is the only objective. But, good marine varnish is very expensive; and, in reality it offers no reprieve from regular, on-going maintenance. You must still tend to the finish every year in full-sun environments; you must inspect, sand damaged areas, and recoat. Further, even those who regularly recommend marine varnish products will tell you that a minimum of 5 or 6 coats is required to obtain the full benefit of these finishes. So, not only are you applying two to three times more varnish; you are applying a product that costs two to three times more, and your maintenance schedule is unchanged. Further, it is important to understand that marine varnish is "long-oil" varnish; varnish that is softer and much less resistant to moisture in the form of water-vapor than regular or "short-oil" varnish. Moisture movement into and out of the wood with seasonal changes in relative humidity is every bit of destructive to joinery as UV is to wood. These quality marine varnishes are excellent finishes in their intended environment. If I owned a wooden boat I would use nothing else. But, we are not talking about maintaining a boat; our objective is to apply a durable finish to a front door and to use a finish that will offer maximum protection along with minimum maintenance. Quality oil-based exterior paint, sans the pigment, is ideally suited to this application. Exterior oil-based paint, after all, is little more than exterior oil-based varnish with a lot of pigment added. Remove the pigment and you have a very durable exterior varnish with additives that benefit the finish on your front door. These additives, intended to discourage insects such as wasps and wood boring bees, and prevent the growth of mold and mildew, would be useless in a marine environment; but, we aren't talking about a marine environment. We are talking about your front door. With this as a background permit me to introduce you to my friend Jim Kull. Jim was the owner of a successful refinishing shop in Southern California prior to his retirement and move to Texas. His retirement gave him a bit more time to experiment so he conducted and posted the results of the following test on the WOOD Magazine Finishing & Refinishing Forum where he served as the host. When Jim decided to step down from his host duties he was instrumental in my becoming host of that forum.Here then is Jim Kull's original post edited slightly for clarity: "In a recent post my friend, Steve (Mickley), made reference to my tests of doggie sprinkling on exterior finishes. I figure after almost a year of testing it is time to post some interesting discoveries. As a preface, allow me to set the stage. Almost daily there is a posting about clear, exterior finishes for doors, chairs, signs and such. Responses run the gamut from diehard marine finishes to apply a coat of primer and then paint. Each of these has a bit of a problem. Marine finishes are not always the easiest to find, and it grieves me to think of a lovely oak, teak, mahogany, fir, redwood or similar nice wood door painted in mauve goop. Bob (from Florida) inspired me with his continuing and accurate statements about the failings of a clear coat and the advantages of a good quality exterior paint. I decided after lots of reflection that he really was right but there was always the picture of mauve in my mind. So, how could one take advantage of his advice and yet capitalize on the beauty of a nice wood? I began to reflect on the characteristics of paint. Now comes the boredom... There were several things I knew about paint: Exterior paints contain a mildewcide and a fungicide that a (marine) varnish does not. The best quality paints will contain a UV (inhibitor) and trans-oxide pigments in very high percentages. Almost all paint is custom mixed by the store. The retailer maintains a large supply of base products that are used to achieve the desired color. There are generally four base products and the specific one for your paint is determined by your color choice. These base products are either named or numbered. They are named pastel, deep, tint and neutral. If numbered it is cleverly 1, 2, 3 and 4 with the exception of Olympic who numbers 1, 2, 3 and 5. Olympic is unaware that "4" comes before "5". Pastel and/or 1 is virtually a pure white and used for the lightest of colors. The others are slightly color altered from white and more translucent than pastel. These are used for succeeding deeper colors. All of this comes to neutral, 4 and/or 5. These are clear and used for (mixing) the darkest colors. In the can they are somewhat opaque but dry more or less clear. Now comes the testing. I bought 4 oak exterior doors. Each door was given one coat of the same MinWax Stain. On 3 of the doors, I applied 2 coats of "base" to the 6 sides of each door (3 coats on the top and bottom edges). Each of these three doors had a different type of exterior neutral, 4 or 5 base. The fourth door was finished with a consumer "spar" varnish from my local friendly paint/hardware store. The bases for the 3 painted doors were an exterior semi-gloss acrylic, an exterior semi-gloss oil-based polyurethane floor paint, and a semi-gloss oil-based trim and siding paint. The doors were set up, slightly inclined, in mostly direct sunlight under a pecan tree in the backyard. (My wife just loved that one.) Daily, the sprinklers managed to hit the doors. The birds in the pecan tree used the doors for target practice. And, yes, the dogs did anoint the doors on a regular basis. My blonde Cocker, Zazu, was particularly enamored with the doors. Over the course of the test the doors experienced lots of Texas sunlight, rain and snow. The temperature went from below freezing to over 100. The advantage to the inclined position of the doors was the snow, ice, water from the sprinklers and the rain tended to collect in the raised panel areas. I feel these doors were subjected to far more severe environmental conditions than would be expected from normal use. The results were interesting. The "spar" varnish (initially) looked fabulous; but, after about 2 weeks it began to develop small cracks. In rapid order the door began to turn black, started to mold and the smell was enough to knock a buzzard off of a manure wagon. The water-based acrylic is milky in the can like a water-based poly. It dried to a more or less water clear surface but was a bit cloudy. It tended to wash out the stain a bit. Over time it became cloudier and ultimately become almost white. But, it remained solid and protected the wood. The oil-based bases are also a bit opaque in the can but dried to a clear finish that is almost identical to a spar varnish - they added an amber tone to the doors. Both the oil-based poly floor paint and the oil-based trim and siding paint remained "clear" over the entire test period. The testing came to an end with a bit of encouragement. My wife said something clever like,"Get those damned doors out of the backyard!" She does not understand science. The floor poly had some minor checking and a thinned coat of the same base over the surface made that disappear. The door with the oil-based trim and siding paint was perfect, other than it had lost a bit of the gloss. So, I am with Bob - paint the door. My preference is the oil-based products. If you are predisposed to a water-based use an acrylic rather than latex. One thing you will find when you go out shopping for your product is a lack of knowledge on the part of the salesperson. Not many of these folk are aware that their neutral or 4 base will dry clear. If you want to have some fun, spring it on them. They will suggest you are full of Donkey Dust. Ask them to shake a can and put some on a stir stick. Dry it and voila, it is clear." Jim Kull One final admonition; if you decide to try the paint solution you must understand that you are applying it like varnish, not like paint. Use a good natural fiber brush, keep your coats thin, (emphasis added; keep the coats thin! We recommend thinning with paint thinner to improve flow-out and leveling.) and brush the paint-base out into a thin, uniform film. If you apply the paint-base too heavily you will get a cloudy finish. Addendum to Earlier Article Several important things have changed since this article was originally written. Perhaps the most important development has been the advent of low VOC products. Many of the oil-based exterior paints still on the market have been reformulated to meet the more stringent VOC requirements. While these products will still work it is important to understand that thinning these products introduces new requirements. The low VOC paint bases can not be thinned with mineral spirits/paint thinner. You must thin with naphtha. If you do not; if you attempt to thin with traditional mineral spirits/paint thinner the finish will remain tacky literally for days and will never cure properly. The second and somewhat more frustration development is that oil-based products are becoming more and more difficult to find. They are available, primarily in paint stores that cater to the trade; but, they will require more searching, possible even beyond city, county or even state borders. The oil-based paint bases remain superior. Even though some water-borne finishes will work they simply will not last as long. Copyright 2003-2010 Steve Mickley, Copyright 2007-2010 Hardwood Lumber & More…Ltd. All rights reserved. No unauthorized reproduction of any images or content without permission. All logos are Copyrights of their respective companies. Author steve@AskHLM.com Copyright 2014 by Ask HLM
  11. Here we are on the first Friday of a brand new year. I trust everyone survived all of the New Year’s festivities. I wonder how long it will take us to write 2019 instead of 2018....... This year rings in with a full range of shop activities for yours truly. Tomorrow, I have an appointment to measure a semi circular mantle for a home renovation here in town. It should be challenging but fun. I have a California king bed to build and a pair of cherry bookcases for a local dentist’s office. So, Happy New Year! What’s on you Patriot Woodworker Weekend Agenda?
  12. Mr. Moody is busier than a one armed paper hanger and has asked to do his Friday post. It is crunch time in Indiana. I’m on the local election board and we have been prepping for the November elections. Plus, I’m building a shelved cabinet that has to be out the door by December 1st and I have a show to do on November 10. Busy, busy, busy. Today I’m rebuilding a door for the cabinet because I just didn’t like the way the other one looked. The customer wants inset doors to match an existing piece of furniture and that piece isn’t exactly high quality. It’s been a chore. So gang, what’s on Your Weekend Agenda?
  13. Last week we learned that red, yellow and blue are the primary colors that can make all other colors. Now we apply that knowledge. When you mix two primary colors, you get secondary colors. green = blue + yellow purple = blue + red orange = yellow + red Now comes the important part. If you have a finish that has too much of one color, you add the color opposite to neutralize it, and a (mnemonic) to remember Color opposites Red <> Green (Christmas) Yellow <> Purple (Easter) Blue <> Orange (sorry, you're on your own here, unless like me you are a University of Illinois Alumnus) If you forget, just remember that the opposite of a primary color is a secondary by mixing the other two colors, and vice-versa. So, for example, if your color is too red, you can add some green to neutralize it. But in wood finishing, we have some "earth tones" that correspond to some of these colors Red - burnt sienna (brighter red) or burnt umber (darker red) Yellow - yellow ochre or raw sienna Purple - cordovan The finisher's color wheel shows what happens when you combine two of its colors. Unfortunately, unless you go to a non-big-box paint store, you are likely not to find these on a label, but rather, cordovan might be called "mahogany" or some other nickname. Although I knew this is theory, it became apparent when in a refinishing class one of the other students was working on a table he'd brought in. It was a really orange color after initial staining. The instructor made up a pure blue glaze and smeared it on. Immediately the ugly orange turned to a nice brown.
  14. Waterborne finishes have come a long way since first introduced 25 or so years ago. They were pretty awful then, but very good now. Pros: + fast drying - usually, you can sand and re-coat in about an hour + low odor - other fast-drying finishes like lacquer and shellac can have some strong solvent odor while drying. So it works well if you are finishing in a house or baswement + no added color - perfect when you want a non-ambering finish such as one over a white stain (pickled finish) or other non-wood tone color Cons: - less chemical resistance - not quite as resistant to common solvents as some of the other finishes - does not cure well in cold, needs at least 65 degrees or so for several days - lacks amber color that we're used to so some woods can appear washed out, or even bluish, unless a stain or under-coat of shellac applied.
  15. There is not a lot of things to say about wax finishes, so only three things, not three pros and three cons. I am not talking about waxed finishes, but simply using a wax as the one and only finish. Some waxes are light amber, but you can get waxes in a variety of darker colors where the color has been added. Wax is an evaporative finish, meaning with the thinner or solvent evaporates, you are left with the finish. No more chemistry happens. Usually the solvent is mineral spirits, but sometimes, as in the original Briwax, it's something else, in that case tolulol (aka toluene). (So the original Briwax can be a bit too aggressive for new finishes as it's meant more of a restorative wax over a finish, that is, a waxed finish). Waxes are one or more of three types: - Animal (e.g., beeswax) - Vegetable (e.g., carnauba) - Mineral (e.g., paraffin) Three things: + easy to apply - to quote a movie, wax-on, wax-off. Let most of the solvent dry, then buff out. I like to say you want a finish just a few molecules thick, so take off as much as you possibly can, then buff a little more. Wax build-up can attract dirt and not be very attractive. + easy to repair - Just add some more - wax on; wax off - minimal protection - while wax can beautify a wood, it does not do much to protect it from moisture, soiling, etc. It would be appropriate for things that don't get much contact such as art turning, picture frames, etc.
  16. Summer is flying by. Here we are headed into the final weekend in June and we’re looking at Independence Day next week. Shop wise, I started a small job this week. I’m building a double sided glass shadow box for a friend of mine. His dad was a WWII Purple Heart vet and served in the South Pacific. He was carrying a silk AAF map of Japan with him when he was hot in the arm and I’m building a case for the map. BTW, the map still bears the blood stains of his father. Originally we were going to build the case to hang on the wall but with a weight of 24 pounds he opted to make a desk mount. Unfortunately, I failed in convincing him to let me put UV archival glass in it. Too costly he felt. Sigh. Anyway, they’re calling for excessive heat warnings for Indiana so I’m planning not to stray far from the A/C. What’s on your Patriot Woodworker agenda?
  17. Three things about lacquer: Pros (which is why they are often used in production furniture) + Fast drying, even the slow drying "brushable" lacquers dry in 30 minutes or less + Wide variety of sheens available from flatter than dead flat to high gloss (0 - 85+) and hard enough you can adjust sheens easily with abrasives or polishing compounds + Easy to repair because adding more melts into existing Cons - High odor during application - Not quite as resistant as varnish to chemical damage - solvents and white water rings - Can blush in high humidity application
  18. A good Friday morning to all of you Patriot Woodworkers. If you've been keeping up on the forums, it has been a very busy week for y'all and it appears that many projects are in the works. This week, my wife and I broke down and bought new phones. My carrier had a BOGO on iPhone 8s so we're now learning the nuances of the new toys. Also this week, I built a small bookcase, just because. Just because I had a half sheet of plywood in the corner and it was more fun to build something with it than move it around. The case is only 24" wide and 48" tall and I'll probably put it up for sale at my next show. Its been fun because I really didn't know what color(if any) to dye or stain it so I made a sample board and threw it out on my Facebook page as a poll. As of now, its either golden oak or red oak stain. The weather here is predicted to be extremely hot and my son and I are going to build an 80' fence on his new property that is now totally houseless. So gang, what's on your agenda for this weekend? Starting a new project, finishing one or simply relaxing?
  19. Sitting here by the pool in east central Indiana watching the hummingbirds feed. This morning is cool, crisp and damp and the coffee is hot. We finally got some much needed rain last night so all is right with the world. This has been a laid back week with just a little shop time even though my to do list is long. I am retired after all! On Wednesday, Dorothy and I took our two youngest granddaughters to Shipshewana Indiana to attend a large flea market and see the sights. Shipshewana is Amish country filled with shops and amazing food. If you're ever in northern Indiana, it is a great place to spend the day. I did manage to make some progress on a few gun display cases this week and will finish them today. The oak one is sold already and since I was building, I made a cherry and walnut one for stock. The oak case will also have the owner's ID and badges from his lifetime as an arson investigator. On a side note, the pistol laying in the case is the least favorite gun I own. It is a Ruger P95 and shoots fine but it has an odd feel to m y hand. It does make a stellar demo for the case. No big plans for the weekend so far but what's on your Patriot Woodworker agenda for this weekend?
  20. First off, there is a difference between a thinner and a solvent. A solvent dissolves things. A thinner thins things DUH (reduces the solids and alters the viscosity). What makes thins even more confusing is they way they name things. Lacquer thinner both dissolves and thins (because it contains both solvents, co-solvents, and thinners). Paint Thinner thins varnishes, but dissolves waxes. But anyway, (chemistry lesson) 1. Distillates generally of petroleum. Common ones are mineral spirits and naphtha. Less commonly used ones are kerosene, xylene (xylol), toluene (tolulol), benzene (a carcinogen), and benzine, and even turpentine (a distillate of pine sap). These have different evaporation rates, oiliness, and smells. These generally thin (oil-based) varnishes and are in some lacquer thinners. Xylene will soften cured water-borne finishes. Most of these will dissolve waxes, oils, and some adhesives. d-Limonene is a distillate of citrus rinds; it's found in some cleaners/polishes/degreasers/adhesive removers. 2. Alcohols and Ketones. Alcohols include ethanol, methanol, and isopropyl. "Denatured alcohol" is ethanol (grain alcohol - everclear booze) with enough methanol (wood alcohol) added to make it poisonous to drink (and so it does not need to be taxed as booze). Chemically, a ketone is an oxidized alcohol. Common ones are acetone and MEK. Alcohol is a solvent for shellac and alcohols and ketones are often part of lacquer thinners. 3. Glycol Ethers are a large class of chemicals and are in water-borne finishes. Two major classes are ethylene glycol or propylene glycol. They soften and make sticky the large resin molecules. As the glycol ethers evaporate the resin molecules bond together. Cellosolve is a trademark for a glycol ether.
  21. Well gang, we are ushering in a new month as June is upon us. I trust your holiday shortened week has treated you well. As many of you already know, last Sunday was race day for my son and I as we sweltered in the 92 degree heat with 300,000 of my closest friends. One of the many traditions at the Indy 500 during the pre-race ceremonies is the blowing of taps to pay honor to those who gave their lives fighting for this country. Just across the track from us is the infamous "Snake Pit" where 30,000 highly intoxicated people listen to rack music instead of watch the race. Interestingly, during the pre-race festivities all music stopped but there was still lots of crowd noise. However, when taps were blown the entire speedway was stone silent. You could hear absolutely nothing and it was one of those solemn moments I'll never forget. My week has been light as I played lifeguard in our pool for the grand-kids but I did manage to get a good start on three pistol display cases. One cherry, one oak and a walnut. Tomorrow I've volunteered to help my son build a 12 X 16 shed. So, Patriot Woodworkers, what's on your weekend agenda?
  22. Cleaning a varnish brush, three steps. 1. Wipe off excess on a rag or paper towel 2. Use the three-jar (or two-jar) method. * The first jar (labelled III (or II)) contains the previously used mineral spirits / paint thinner. Dip in the brush and slosh it around. Take it out and wipe it off on a rag. * Repeat the process with the remaining jar(s). * Put a lid on the jars and save them for next time. * When the first jar becomes full of crud, pour off any clear on top into the next jar. Then throw the first jar away. Demote jar II to jar III (just add a "I") If you are just using two jars, then I becomes II. 3. Rinse with lacquer thinner. This will remove the oiliness of the mineral spirits. Wrap in original wrapper or a paper bag strip with rubber band and let dry.
  23. Well folks, we have made it through the week and we're staring at the first holiday weekend of the summer of 2018. Memorial Day always conjures up memories for me. I have a picture around here of me when I was about 8 years marching in my Cub Scout uniform toward the cemetery on Memorial Day. We always made the tour of the cemeteries to place flowers on the graves of our relatives and Dorothy and I still do. Back then the Indy 500 was run on Memorial Day, not the Sunday before and I would sit on the front porch listening on a static laced AM radio imagining the action in my mind. Those dreams did come true and I have attended the race many times and have only missed it 3 times since 1964. Twice when I was serving for my favorite uncle (Sam) and last year when my seatmate and son had emergency gall bladder surgery 3 days before the race. This year's race is forecast to be a hot one with the high coming in around 90. Couple that with the track temperature of about 130 degrees, it will be toasty in row EE of turn #3. The picture below is close to where we sit so here's our view. So Patriot Woodworkers, what's on your agenda this Memorial Day weekend? Woodworking, picnic, nothing?
  24. Three things that affect the finished color of a project 1. The wood. You would not expect the same resulting color if you applied the same products to, say, pine, poplar, walnut, maple, cherry, or white oak. Each wood will impart not only its own natural color, but the grain and porosity of the wood can affect how it absorbs the upper layers. I have applied exactly the same stain to ash and red oak, that look very similar in the rough (ring porous woods) and on red oak it comes out a light brown and on ash, a light yellow. 2. The colorant. The dyes and/or pigments in a stain, glaze or toner will obviously impact the resulting color. And it may interact with the underlying wood. For example, if you add a raw umber color, normally a darkish green to a wood like cherry with a lot of natural red, they will neutralize each other and come up with more of a brown result. If you put raw umber on maple, you are going to see more of that greenish color. 3. The finish. All finishes can add (or omit) color. Waterborne finishes and lacquers called "water-white" add virtually no color. These are great if you don't want added color, for example over a pickled finish. On the other hand, they can look like the finish is washed out. Shellac comes in different grades from super blond, blonde, lemon, orange and garnet. Sometimes they are called light amber, amber, natural, or whatever just to confuse us. Varnishes (oil-based) generally have an amber color. Exactly what depends on the mix of which oil and which resin. Soy-alkyd, linseed-urethane, or tung-phenolic are the common combinations and vary from light to dark amber, respectively. So that is why when you are doing test boards on scrap, you need to use the same wood, the same colorant, and the same finish, all the way to completion. Also, the color you get on day one may not the color 10 years down the road. Woods tend to change color - cherry darkens, walnut lightens, and maple ambers. Dyes and pigments tend to fade in light, dyes usually more so. And if you have a colorant with two or more ingredients, one of them might change faster than the others. So an amber might fade to an orange. On one hand you have the woods going one way and perhaps the colorants going the other, each at their own rate.
  25. I'm sure happy that the elections here in Indiana are over for 6 months. I'm the chairman of the local election board and it has been a very long week that started last Thursday. Even with the election process going on, I was able to spend some time with my son tearing down his newly purchased house. Yesterday marked 6 weeks since we started the de-construction process and with any luck the structure will be on the ground next Monday. The pictures below show our progress as of tonight. The roof is off half the house and hopefully it will be totally off by Saturday. Not much shop time this week and none scheduled for the weekend. So, here's the question Patriot Woodworkers, "What's on your weekend agenda?"
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