Bolster wrote: ↑Sun Jun 20, 2021 10:32 pm
Ah...I'd asked what finish in another thread, I should have looked here first. Very nice, very very nice. Now I'm on the hunt for some birdseye maple. I can't tell if the orange cast is the wood, stain, or the setting sun, but I really like the look.
Did you try the trick of sanding the scales with >500 grit while still wet with BLO? I did one scale that way, and another with no wet sanding, and the wet-sanded scale is noticeably smoother.
I actually take my harder wood up to about 1000 grit dry before applying any finishes. When you get to the really high grits by hand you really need extra patience. Just when you think you are done, go ahead and sand for another hour, lol!
I soaked this one in BLO heated to 60 deg C. For about 24 hours to really soak it in, then let hang and re-applied once a day for a week. At this point it is so saturated that it takes a while to fully dry and polymerize enough to handle. I do give a rub down with 00 steel wool between coats if I feel or see the grain rise at all, but this one didn't need it. I hung it in the sun room for almost a week which is quite hot and dry before it got nice and hard.
I will let it cure another week or two before I hit it with the high grit paper to polish the cured finish and get rid of any remaining oil on the tang. It is a bit of a bastardized process of a few different techniques learned over the years from other wood projects.
I am interested in the wet sanding procedure you mentioned but I will play around with it on some scrap and a less permanent project before I see how it can fit into my finishing style.
This knife is destined to be a gift for a good friend for next hunting season so I am just following my own tried and true experiences.
And yea, the color is very orange due to the hot BLO soaking and the natural wood color. It will settle down a bit and darken a little over time. It is hard to really convey the depth of the wood and the play of light it has but maybe I can throw up a quick vid on my ytube and embed it here.
Here is a quick shot fresh out of the hot oil.
Btw, shoot me your address and I'll send you out some birdseye, I have a few really nice pieces left over from a bigger custom project.