Hand Tools Archive

weirdo finishes...

David Weaver
..I made three pencils over lunch today. Haven't made any in a while, but I have unsettled business in making them good and then making the leads (and making them good).

two days ago, I finished another one, remembering that you can use an oil based stain to facilitate a french polish *as long as* you don't leave a bunch on the surface when you're done - you have to burnish all of the oil off (or it gets sticky and then you have to wait for that stain to dry completely - like several days to a week)

So, I was in a hurry and didn't want to do a typical full french polish type finish on the pencil (see the one at the left here).


I put a couple of passes of shellac on and then used fast drying polyurethane as the oil - semi-gloss. Well, the shellac didn't build after that, but there's just a little more color than polyurethane would have (I tried poly only on a piece of limba compared to buttonlac and it looked dead and boring compared to the shellac).

The polyurethane didn't dry quickly, either - what's there isn't a layer of one and the other, it's a *mix*.

The result is a finish that doesn't allow any dirt on the barrel, but it looks and feels like a soft wax. It's fantastic.

It leads me to wonder what the durability might be and if this better look might be worthwhile chasing elsewhere (like on furniture stuff that is to look waxed, but wouldn't need any maintenance).

more looks of this "woody" looking finish that has no gloss.


(this can be enlarged to excruciatingly large)

The feel and the look is a happy accident.

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