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Old 01-08-2014, 12:02 AM
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Default Painting eucalyptus?

A friend has bought an inexpensive bench made of eucalyptus. She intends to use it indoors and would prefer a painted finish.

My (not terribly knowledgeable) feeling is that this is a bad idea. The oiliness of eucalyptus sounds like trouble for paint--better to keep oiling it to maintain the existing finish.

Insights/opinions/comments?
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Old 01-08-2014, 04:35 AM
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Default Re: Painting eucalyptus?

Maybe pack it in Natron for a few months to dry it out, but I have no idea where to get that stuff.
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Old 01-08-2014, 05:08 AM
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Default Re: Painting eucalyptus?

"Natron" is the Danish word for baking soda. Perhaps that's all it is.

Sorry, Ned. I don't have an answer to your question.
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Old 01-08-2014, 01:58 PM
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Default Re: Painting eucalyptus?

Natron was also used historically as a desiccant for Pharaohs.
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Old 01-08-2014, 03:36 PM
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Default Re: Painting eucalyptus?

Well there you go!

Did they paint the Pharaohs?
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Old 01-08-2014, 11:01 PM
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Default Re: Painting eucalyptus?

Ned I havent worked with Lyptus a lot, but some, so I'll share some thoughts. While I don't particularly care for the stuff, it can be attractive, and finishing was never one of my gripes.
It can have some funny stresses inside, and even "properly" kiln dried wood seemed very prone to acting like it was case hardened. It also splinters easily, and I know a lot of cases of finished work that warped or cracked down the road, leaving me with the impression that it's not terribly stable.
That said, varnish and lacquers all adhered just fine. It took stain. If I were to paint it, unless it literally felt oily, as long as I were using a solvent based product, I wouldn't worry about it much. And for seating, you probably aren't going to look at latex anyway. Like anything else, clean it, scuff sand it, wipe off the debris, paint. I'd be surprised if there were any issues.
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Old 01-15-2014, 01:28 PM
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Default Re: Painting eucalyptus?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RWeber View Post
Ned I havent worked with Lyptus a lot, but some, so I'll share some thoughts. While I don't particularly care for the stuff, it can be attractive, and finishing was never one of my gripes.
It can have some funny stresses inside, and even "properly" kiln dried wood seemed very prone to acting like it was case hardened. It also splinters easily, and I know a lot of cases of finished work that warped or cracked down the road, leaving me with the impression that it's not terribly stable.
That said, varnish and lacquers all adhered just fine. It took stain. If I were to paint it, unless it literally felt oily, as long as I were using a solvent based product, I wouldn't worry about it much. And for seating, you probably aren't going to look at latex anyway. Like anything else, clean it, scuff sand it, wipe off the debris, paint. I'd be surprised if there were any issues.
I agree, I'm betting an oil based paint finish will work just fine, and I also concur about the weird and disappointing things that this wood can exhibit.
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