Ask the Staff
Earlier this year, I purchased a
from Highland. The instructions recommend that the bench be finished with wood oil. I’m not that familiar with oil finishes and there are a lot of options including tung oil, Swedish oil, and boiled or raw linseed oil to cite a few.
What is the best finish for this application?
Most curing wipe-on oil finishes are appropriate for a workbench. Many are linseed oil or tung oil based. You could also use boiled linseed oil. Wipe on oils will give some protection without having a "film" appearance to make the surface slick (like a brushed applied varnish /polyurethane would). A slick surface is NOT what you want for a workbench top. Avoid "raw" linseed oil. It takes a very long time to dry.
Here are some recommended products:
Watco Danish Oil
- Choose the "Natural" color. Don't use any with color tints.
Boiled Linseed Oil
General Finishes Gel Topcoat Satin
The above products are for going on bare wood. If there is some factory applied finish on the workbench, the wipe on finishes would do better if you sanded off any "film" applied finish first, if you detect one on the bench.
to go to our Finishing department and
find out more about the wood finishing supplies we offer
with your woodworking questions. If yours is selected for publication,
we'll send you a free Highland Woodworking hat.