Finish for baby crib

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Blog entry by Monte Pittman posted 07-23-2012 12:16 PM 1824 reads 0 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I am in the process of building a baby crib for an upcoming grandchild. Do I need to use food safe finish on it? I figured no better place to ask than here.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

12 comments so far

View bowtie's profile


948 posts in 1649 days

#1 posted 07-23-2012 12:51 PM

I would go with a food safe finish, perhaps shellac?

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

View TexPenn's profile


457 posts in 2990 days

#2 posted 07-23-2012 02:03 PM

At least go with lead free.

-- Ted, TX or PA

View Bigrock's profile


285 posts in 2265 days

#3 posted 07-23-2012 02:54 PM

I had the same question 9 years ago Monte. I called Minwax because my daughter wanted the crib finished as light in color. At that time water base finish was not very good. Talking with the Tech. Department at Minwax they said that the Minwax Poly Wipe On in gloss or semi-gloss would do well. The kicker was it had to cure for at least a week. The curing time did away with any harmful items in the finish. At this point in there life the baby is not chewing on the crib. There is no lead in the finish.
My granddaughter is still sleeping in her bed, that I made which converted from a crib to youth, to a double bed. It uses the same Head board.
I hope you have as much joy with yours as I an having with my granddaughters as I am.

View Gary's profile


8923 posts in 2736 days

#4 posted 07-23-2012 06:02 PM

Rockler has a finish made specifically for your application. I used it once on a crib I built for a nephew

-- Gary, DeKalb Texas only 4 miles from the mill

View derosa's profile


1568 posts in 2138 days

#5 posted 07-23-2012 06:55 PM

I used danish oil which is also food safe. Good thing as my wife convinced me we didn’t need the plastic protective covers on the side rails and my daughter took to chewing them quite heavily. I’d recommend food safe.

-- --Rev. Russ in NY-- A posse ad esse

View Ivan 's profile


185 posts in 2680 days

#6 posted 07-23-2012 06:58 PM

I used Shellac and I would recommend the plastic rail covers…

-- "Do it right the first time, you'll just kick yourself later..."

View Grandpa's profile


3251 posts in 1978 days

#7 posted 07-23-2012 07:25 PM

Lead based products were taken off the market in the mid 1970’s. Any recently manufactured product that suits you should be okay. Everyone has a favorite. Remember that clear finishes also contained lead products but those would be almost 40 years old now so having such a product that is useable would be unlikely. Plastic rail covers are always good. Keeps the splinters down. I would use about any product that is made in the United States.

View Roger's profile


19225 posts in 2107 days

#8 posted 07-23-2012 10:42 PM

Very interesting subject. I am sure anything you use would do, after it is cured. I don’t blame you for being careful tho. Them Grnd-babies are precious. I’ll be followin along just for everyones input.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View gfadvm's profile


14851 posts in 1993 days

#9 posted 07-24-2012 01:13 AM

I may be mistaken but I’m under the impression that any finish like shellac,lacquer, or poly is safe after it has fully cured. Iwould be suprised if a baby could actually gnaw through the finish!

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View PCTNWV's profile


99 posts in 2107 days

#10 posted 07-24-2012 01:21 AM

I used a product you can get from Woodcraft, Rockler and I am sure other places called: Tried and True Varnish Oil.
Easy to apply, creates a great finish an is safe for children’s furniture.

-- Troy, Virginia

View derosa's profile


1568 posts in 2138 days

#11 posted 07-24-2012 03:26 AM

gfadvm-kids that are teething can gnaw through anything, you should see the gouges, gorges?, that my kid made in solid cherry, they will gnaw through poly or shellac. I do believe though that you are correct that those finishes should be safe after they have had sufficient time to cure.

-- --Rev. Russ in NY-- A posse ad esse

View stefang's profile


15468 posts in 2637 days

#12 posted 07-24-2012 09:21 PM

I have the same understanding that most finishes today are not dangerous after the finish is cured, but a hard finish can be easily chewed through, so perhaps an oil /varnish finish that isguaranteed safe would be a good bet.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

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