Versatile Varnish

by Alan Noel
Professional Wood Finisher

Over the years I have often found myself working late into the evening hours finishing up a project only to find myself stuck without the materials I needed to complete the job. At times like this it pays to put your thinking cap on and stretch the resources you have at hand. A can of varnish, fresh and unopened, can go a long way when the stores have closed. Here are a few ways to get by in a pinch.

1. If the need is for wiping varnish, simply add mineral spirits, 3 parts varnish to one part mineral spirits.

2. Need a penetrating oil finish? Add 2 parts varnish to 2 parts mineral spirits.

3. Want a simple wood sealer or "wood conditioner" to even out the staining process? Just add one part varnish to 3 parts mineral spirits.

4. Any and all unused material should be placed into as small a container as possible. The less exposure to air the better.

5. Safety first. Place all used oily rags in water or hang them out to dry outside. We don't want to burn the shop down!

Visiting Atlanta? Attend one of Alan's upcoming highly informative Highland Woodworking wood finishing seminars:

Wood Coloring Basics , February 10, 2010

Furniture Repair , February 20, 2010

French Polishing , February 24, 2010

Spray Finishing , February 27, 2010

Scott Antiques Mall Treasure Hunt , March 13, 2010

Visit Highland Woodworking's Online Wood Finishing Supplies Department

Alan can be reached directly via email c/o Alan Noel Furniture Refinishing at .

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