maloof finish

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Forum topic by mnorusis posted 11-18-2009 04:55 PM 2883 views 1 time favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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153 posts in 2560 days

11-18-2009 04:55 PM

Topic tags/keywords: finishing

I’ve been reading a bunch about the “Maoof Finish” (equals parts pure tung oil, BOL and poly) and I’m going to do a couple of test scrap pieces for my current project.

For those of you that have used this finish before, what kind of polyurethane am I supposed to use? Oil based? water based? does it matter?

Any other tips are welcome as well!


11 replies so far

View woodbutcher's profile


592 posts in 3583 days

#1 posted 11-18-2009 05:18 PM

I’ve not seen the actual formula posted myself, however, I feel sure that it would need to be an oil based urethane. Just be sure to mix up small amounts that you can use quickly and you should be able to thin this mixture successfully using mineral spirits. Happy mixing and finishing!

Ken McGinnis

-- woodbutcher north carolina

View danr's profile


154 posts in 2602 days

#2 posted 11-18-2009 05:48 PM

Hey there,

I have used this type of finish on many projects. My brother gave me some artical about this type of finish 15 years ago (its not Maloof but sounds similar). I use and oil based poly urethane in particular a “spar” poly. I mix roughly 45% tung oil, 45% spar poly (oil based), and about 10% mineral spirits just to thin it out a bit. I mix the ammount that I think I will need for the entire project and then store it in a sealed paint can during the finishing process. Multiple coats are better than one.

The process I use is wipe it on to a managable sized area, wait a bit until it just barely becomes tacky, then rub off quickly. I really hate to do finishing but this method is about as easy as they come from my experience. I will say though that this finish is not the “most durable” one that I have used but is good.

Good luck,

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27251 posts in 3239 days

#3 posted 11-18-2009 06:22 PM


In this case you will have to use an oil base poly. Water base poly is formulated in water and will not mix with the tung oil and BLO.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View mnorusis's profile


153 posts in 2560 days

#4 posted 11-18-2009 06:25 PM

Scott, amazing how much logical sense that makes…sheesh. (Edit: that wasn’t meant to be sarcastic, just a comment about how I should have come up with that on my own)

I’m very curious to see how durable this finish ends up being or if i need to put a few coats of something else on top of it, or maybe a different mix of the same ingrediants with a higher % of poly. Funny, I really don’t enjoy finishing, but after spending so much painstaking time on a project, I want it to look perfect, so I end up probably over-worrying about minor details.

Thanks all.

View Rick's profile


366 posts in 2628 days

#5 posted 12-21-2009 11:23 PM

If an Oil and Poly mix is good (with poly being the more protective ingredient for the finish). Wouldn’t Oil THEN Poly be better?

View stefang's profile


15512 posts in 2751 days

#6 posted 12-22-2009 12:50 AM

It seems to me that poly over oil is ok, but poly mixed with oil will be more easy to repair and refinish, although it is not as durable as poly alone. Each type of finish has it’s advantages and disadvantages. And which finish is the most appropriate will normally be determined by the piece it’s used on or other criteria including it’s intended use, the design (period furniture for example), to showcase the wood or for it’s ease of application and easy cleanup and probably a lot of other reasons that don’t come to mind right now.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Karson's profile


35032 posts in 3818 days

#7 posted 12-22-2009 01:04 AM

I’ve use something similiar and I call it my Danish Oil finish./ 1/3 BLO, 1/3 Varnish (I’ve used floor varnish) and 1/3 Mineral spirits.

I make about 1/3 cup of each and I put about 1/2 cap of Japan Drier and it hardens up overnight. So you have to use it all up once you use the Japan Drier.

This table got a coating and about 3 hours later I put on a second coat. Dried overnight and then light sanded with 600 grit and wax.

Click for details

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View Timberwerks's profile


355 posts in 2578 days

#8 posted 12-22-2009 01:04 AM

You can also visit Rockler and pick up a can ready to go,

To mix your own use 1/3 varnish 1/3 Boiled Linseed oil and 1/3 Tung Oil. Semi gloss varnish is typically used but you can also use satin. If you use gloss you can knock down the sheen with steel wool. You can also thin your blend with turpentine or mineral spirits. Add more varnish for a more durable finish


View interpim's profile


1158 posts in 2876 days

#9 posted 12-22-2009 01:26 AM

i would recommend you watch the video Marc did on the Wood Whisperer about oil based finishes. He gives a lot of insight into the ins and outs of oil finishes.

He also explains the benefits and drawbacks of pure oil finishes, varnish finishes, or mixtures of the two.

-- San Diego, CA

View hObOmOnk's profile


1381 posts in 3545 days

#10 posted 12-22-2009 02:39 PM

No one ever asks the obvious questions:

What kind of wood are you using?
What type of project are you making?
What kind of finish do you desire?
What finishing products are available to you?
What are your current or intended finishing skills, techniques and tools?

It seems obvious to me that any recommendation for a finish depends on these factors.

Who knows? A nice thick coat of paint might be best. :)

-- 温故知新

View Rick's profile


366 posts in 2628 days

#11 posted 12-22-2009 03:41 PM

For me, those obvious questions have already been asked. I know what I’m making and what kind of wood I’m using. I know what I can buy local and I know I can order anything. I know what my current finishing skills and techniques are and I’m here to expand them.

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