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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 9:44 pm 
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Location: Folsom, CA 95630 USA
I have just completed a table top from a gorgeous redwood slab.
I am not sure what to finish it with. I want to maintain the incredible coloration and grain pattern and I want it to be a durable satin finish.
Some folks said Danish oil is the only way to go for redwood slab table tops. Any advice is appreciated. :confused:


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 10:10 pm 
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Inside use I assume, the table will be used for what?

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 10:16 pm 
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I will be using it as a TV room table for snacking and such. So indoor use only-thanks


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2012 6:26 am 
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I've seen them finished with thick acrylic - like you'd see on a bar top.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2012 11:13 am 
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If you want durable, I'd use a poly.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2012 7:30 pm 
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Make sure you finish both sides so moisture moves evenly and you don't get warping or twisting.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2012 11:45 am 
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Oil is not a finish.
At least is the strict sense of the word.

It will, however, provide a wonderful coloration to the wood.

I wouldn't use a colored variety, but rather, Natural.
You're talking about "Watco", yes?

Wet sand in a couple of coats (both sides), then (when dry) coat with 3-4 layers of polyurethane.

This time of year it may a week to 10 days for the oil to dry.
Another storm is coming in on Wednesday bringing plenty of humidity.

Oh, and don't be surprised if over time the Redwood turns grey, despite your efforts.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2012 10:01 am 
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DMoening wrote:
Oh, and don't be surprised if over time the Redwood turns grey, despite your efforts.


Even indoors? I had no idea.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2012 1:03 pm 
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Even indoors? I had no idea.

I'm not saying it will as fact. Just saying don't be surprised.

I don't have enough experience with "Redwood" to say with any confidence what will happen down the road.

The coloration of wood is affected by many factors other than sunlight.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2012 8:51 am 
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Redwood slab says a crosscut to me. Annual rings or burl/root figure shows prominently. Sort of a California thing, as I recall. This gives you the hardest available wood presentation, so denting shouldn't be a great problem unless the tree grew so rapidly that you have a lot of lighter earlywood showing. Angle it was cut through the trunk can make a bit of difference, too. Your finishing problem is that the light earlywood will suck up finish like crazy, and the dark late won't at all. I fed the slab stuff I did with full strength varnish, rubbed in and then away until I could get a surface that would stay saturated. Urethane in my case, though I did one or two with Antique Oil Finish - alkyd resin - because they were walnut, and I wanted them dark.

The redwood will darken considerably, and it will stay that way under normal usage for at least ten years, which is as long as I had to follow my monstrosities. Don't need to worry about equal coats, because the stress is in the wrong direction for warping until you get annuals a half inch or so wide because of the slant in the cut. Even then ... well, won't hurt to do the underside.

If my interpretation of slab fits, use that advice. If your interpretation is that a thick plank is a slab, treat it like the board that it is, and sand large and flat so you don't develop waves. Finish the bottom up close to the top, though a thick slab will defend itself pretty well.

You putting a trunk/branch or root support under, or just plain wood?


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