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Applying Oil Base Finishes

1. Surface Preparation

All surfaces should be clean and free from all dirt and oils. Fill all nail holes with putty before sanding. Sand surface using #150-#180 grade fine-grit sandpaper. If you are finishing a piece made of closed grained hardwood, such as Maple or Birch, use #120 grade sandpaper. The coarser paper will open up the hard surface to more easily accept stain. Remove all the dust by vacuuming or wiping with a lint-free cloth or tack cloths.

2. Drying Information

General Finishes Stains and Top Coats can dry in 6-8 hours under ideal conditions (70% - 75% humidity). Cooler temperatures or higher humidity may extend the time needed for drying up to 12-24 hours or longer. Basements, even with a furnace, fireplace, and dehumidifier, are the worst environments for drying. Provide good ventilation and air movement with a fan to greatly improve dry time. If a stain coat is dry, you should be able to wipe your hand across the surface without feeling any tackiness. If your top coat is dry, sanding will produce a white powder.

3. Staining

Stains can be applied using a foam brush, bristle brush, paint pad applicator, or a lint-free cloth. Wipe or brush on stain with your applicator. Then remove excess stain by wiping with a clean cloth. It is important to wipe off the stain thoroughly and consistently (in the direction of the grain) to get an evenly stained surface. A second coat, applied after the first one is dry, will give you a darker and deeper color. No more than two coats are recommended. Do not sand a stain coat, only top coats.

Note: The white colorant in White Mist is titanium dioxide, which penetrates far less than the earth clay pigments found in all other stain colors. White stain is often called pickling stain as it lets much of the wood color show through. It is not paint and will not cover like paint. Apply White Mist as directed above. Be sure to wipe off the excess well to prevent lifting during the application of the top coat. A second coat will add a little more color. Let White Mist dry for 24 hours before a second coat or top coats.

4. Applying Top Coats

General Finishes Top Coats are made with the highest quality pure urethane resin. They are as durable as polyurethane, but because of their thinner viscosity, urethanes are much easier to apply. Apply the top coat with a lint-free cloth, foam brush, or paint pad applicator, moving with the direction of the grain. For large surfaces, apply a liberal coat as quickly as possible, evening out surface with long, smooth strokes. When evening out the top coat, keep your applicator wet to provide lubrication. A dry applicator can drag on the surface and cause skid streaks. (These streaks may be easily removed after the surface has dried by buffing well and recoating). Buff between top coats with '0000' steel wool or #320 or finer grade sandpaper to produce a smooth surface. A minimum of 3 top coats is recommended.

5. Maintenance and Care

It's important to let your final coat cure for a period of 14 days to reach optimum hardness. You may use you project sooner, just treat it with special care during the curing period. To maintain the finish use General Finishes Orange Oil or just a damp cloth. Paste wax is not recommended, because it builds up and yellows, thus becoming a maintenance problem.

Note:  To rejuvenate an old dull finish, simply clean surface well with mineral sprits and '0000' steel wool and apply one of General Finishes Top Coats.



Quality Wood Furniture of Leesville, Louisiana

8049 Shrevesport Hwy
Leesville, Louisiana  71446
337-239-7070  FAX:  337-239-6644

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