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Old 02-27-2009, 07:52 PM
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BenchDog BenchDog is offline
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: PA USA
Posts: 109
Default What brand(s) of finishing products do you use?

I have been working hard over the past few months to improve my knowledge and techniques for wood finishing, with particular emphasis on moving toward water-borne finishes.

For years, I have just used the standard off-the-shelf stuff like MinWax, or BLO and wax, but was never particularly thrilled with odor and safety issues, or the results.

After doing a good bit of research, I decided to take the plunge and try Target Coatings products. They seem to have a very loyal woodworker following and have a pretty complete line of water-based sealers, varnishes, lacquers, etc. But after initial tests and use, I am less than enthusiastic. For brush or wipe-on applications, the products are so fast-drying that they make it very difficult to work with on large surfaces (tables).

The other day I stopped by my local Sherwin-Williams store and after a long talk with the store manager, decided try a couple of their water-based polyurethane varnishes (their Wood Classics line). My initial tests are very positive. Very easy application, quick drying (recoat in 1 hr), minimal prep required between coats, and superb results. I had never associated SW with quality coatings (perhaps my mistake), so I'm a little surprised by these results.

Since it is still early in my quest for the holy grail of finishes, I thought I would ask what you Festoolians like? In particular, are there specific brands you have had success with?

BTW, I have not made the leap to spraying yet. While I would like to, ventilation and space requirements will present serious challenges.

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