French Polish Simplified

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Blog entry by blackcherry posted 572 days ago 1884 reads 12 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

One of my favorite finishes is the classic French Polish technique, the use of shellac and a lubricate in a hand pad wiping on method. Now I’ve seen plenty of ways to go about this technique from melting down shellac flake and thinning with cutting medium, so over the years I came up with a procedure of my own by trail and error and have simplified this technique to my own liking and so I would like to share with any of you who would like to try this out. So I would like to post a blog soon in showing a simple way to achieve a high end and just a wonderful feeling finish which will marvel anyone who takes hold of your next project. Also would add that this is a finish for small project like boxes and any other project that needs to be seen and not under heavy uses, Shellac is not a durable tough finish. Practice on a scrap piece of wood is highly recommended just till you get the hang of the process and I can’t stress enough that small amount of shellac and lubricate are critical in achieving a nice finish so with that said stay tune for a simple way to French Polishing….BC

10 comments so far

View Tim Dahn's profile

Tim Dahn

1467 posts in 2192 days

#1 posted 572 days ago

Sounds interesting, staying tuned…

-- Good judgement comes from experience and experience comes from poor judgement.

View JoeyG's profile


1234 posts in 1252 days

#2 posted 572 days ago

I will be looking forward to the next episode.

-- JoeyG ~~~

View stefang's profile


12875 posts in 1961 days

#3 posted 572 days ago

Very Timely post. After seeing Andy’s ( gfadvm) recent box post with a reference to your help with the finish technique, I was hoping for the opportunity to get more details on your method. This will be a much appreciated blog, especially since I finally got some shellac flakes to play with. By the way, I plan to mix it with Ethanol which has a red dye in it. Will this work ok?

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View bowtie's profile


823 posts in 973 days

#4 posted 572 days ago

shellac has become a favorite of mine, looking forward to learning your technique.

-- bowtie,.....jus passin thru....

View DIYaholic's profile


13269 posts in 1302 days

#5 posted 572 days ago

I’m on the edge my seat!!!

Looking forward to attending the “Blackcherry Finishing School”!!!
Maybe I’ll turn into a respectable person. NOT!!!

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procratination a bad thing?

View Don W's profile

Don W

14842 posts in 1194 days

#6 posted 572 days ago

Always willing to learn something new.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

View Woodmaster29's profile


5 posts in 572 days

#7 posted 572 days ago

nothing replaces the classic french polish!

View Toolz's profile


1003 posts in 2369 days

#8 posted 571 days ago

Thanks, I’ll be watching!

-- Larry "Work like a Captain but Play like a Pirate!"

View Mauricio's profile


6799 posts in 1778 days

#9 posted 571 days ago

The finish on your boxes is amazing! Thanks for sharring.

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View Roger's profile


14318 posts in 1431 days

#10 posted 571 days ago

I too am holding my breath, so, hurry back.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe.

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