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butcher block counter top finish

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Forum topic by Pabs posted 05-12-2016 01:16 PM 1577 views 0 times favorited 33 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Pabs

196 posts in 2914 days


05-12-2016 01:16 PM

hey all

I just finished a set of butcher block counter tops for my mini kitchen reno
I’ve been reading a fair on how to finish it. many point to the Mineral oil option. several coats of it to saturate the wood and you’re done. I’ve also heard people putting on mineral oil and once saturated they would use a salad bowl finish (mineral oil and beeswax) for the final coat
the other one that seems to come up is Waterlox… but not sure on the food safe issue for that one.

what do you guys recommend?

also, when applying mineral oil I presume it will raise the grain… I would scrap off or sand between each coat until there is no more grain coming up?

any tips are appreciated as always!

thanks

-- Pabs


33 replies so far

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FancyShoes

506 posts in 825 days


#1 posted 05-12-2016 02:07 PM

You ahouldnt have to worry about sanding after oiling, wont raise grain much at all, as you can tell from all the youtube videos of people using them on the cutting boards.

I would stick with the first option, 2nd option might shine a bit more if you want that look, and when the finish starts getting dull, you should reapply what ever choice you went with. You can also use the oil once a week or so because it just helps the grain to push dirt and debre out of the wood.

Im not familiar with the 3rd option of finishing, so I cant give any asvice there.

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Kirk650

289 posts in 209 days


#2 posted 05-12-2016 02:11 PM

I make cutting boards and wooden kitchen tools. For a finish, I’ve used Mineral oil, Tung Oil, Walnut oil, an expensive mix of oil and wax, and one other (Watco?) that dried with a hard finish. I really can’t say that one is better than the rest, though I mostly use Tung Oil (the pure stuff) these days.

I suppose that Walnut Oil and Tung Oil, being nut oils, could possibly cause problems if someone had a serious nut allergy. No problems so far, however.

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Pabs

196 posts in 2914 days


#3 posted 05-12-2016 02:19 PM

what would be the big difference between mineral oil and tung oil? I’ve used Tung oil in the past for furniture and like it but was warned by someone against using it for this purpose as it chip? from my experience the oil just gets absorbed and eventually fades away and you simply apply more.. .no need to scrape anything off

as for raising grain.. I brought it up because last night I used a damp cloth to remove the dust on them and noticed the grain had raised a fair bit this morning. I’ll need to sand that off for sure and figured the oil might have a similar effect…

-- Pabs

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BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1830 days


#4 posted 05-12-2016 03:04 PM

Your damp cloth I assume was dampened with water, which would raise the grain, the oil will not. When I finish my cutting boards, I use mineral oil. It’s dirt cheap at the pharmacy (look in the laxatives section), and food-safe, and doesn’t go bad, and there’s nothing to chip off. I do each side, and pour on enough so I can see it sitting on the surface, I let it sit for about 20 minutes, then wipe off the excess. I do that a couple times, and it stops absorbing oil. I have a mixture of mineral oil, which I heated and melted beeswax into, that I use for the last coat. It seems to give the surface a nicer sheen and softer feel. Every so often I will rub in another coat of mineral oil, or the mixture. I made an island with a hard maple butcher block top, and it’s held up well. I oil both sides (the underside I just rub it in where I can with a paper towel soaked in the oil).

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

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Pabs

196 posts in 2914 days


#5 posted 05-12-2016 04:24 PM



Your damp cloth I assume was dampened with water, which would raise the grain, the oil will not. When I finish my cutting boards, I use mineral oil. It s dirt cheap at the pharmacy (look in the laxatives section), and food-safe, and doesn t go bad, and there s nothing to chip off. I do each side, and pour on enough so I can see it sitting on the surface, I let it sit for about 20 minutes, then wipe off the excess. I do that a couple times, and it stops absorbing oil. I have a mixture of mineral oil, which I heated and melted beeswax into, that I use for the last coat. It seems to give the surface a nicer sheen and softer feel. Every so often I will rub in another coat of mineral oil, or the mixture. I made an island with a hard maple butcher block top, and it s held up well. I oil both sides (the underside I just rub it in where I can with a paper towel soaked in the oil).

- BinghamtonEd

yes, it is dampened with water. is it a good idea to do this a few times to raise and remove the raised grain? then go to town with the oils? or it’s not necessary?
when you say you let it sit and wipe off then repeat.. .do you do this in the same day? or is it better to do the coats more spread out ? like once a day or something like that

and your mixture of beeswax and oil… what’s the proportions? I’ve heard of it before but never found a recipe for it

thanks

-- Pabs

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waho6o9

7171 posts in 2038 days


#6 posted 05-12-2016 04:28 PM

Practice on some scraps first.

I like using the Good Stuff:

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Pabs

196 posts in 2914 days


#7 posted 05-12-2016 04:40 PM

strong smell when applied? never seen it around here..would have to order online

-- Pabs

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Pabs

196 posts in 2914 days


#8 posted 05-12-2016 04:49 PM

holy smokes….they want 100$ a quart! I’ll stick to less expensive methods ;)

-- Pabs

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BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1830 days


#9 posted 05-12-2016 04:58 PM



when you say you let it sit and wipe off then repeat.. .do you do this in the same day? or is it better to do the coats more spread out ? like once a day or something like that

and your mixture of beeswax and oil… what s the proportions? I ve heard of it before but never found a recipe for it

thanks

- Pabs

I’ve done a couple coats in a day, but usually end up just doing one, due to other unrelated things going on.

I heated the mineral oil on a hot plate and just started shaving pieces of beeswax into it. I don’t know of what the ratio is, and this was a few years back. If I had to guess, it would probably be a small chunk, maybe 1” cube, into a few cups of mineral oil. I still have a decent amount left, it goes a long way. When it cools, it has a Crisco-like consistency. When I need it, I stick a bit of it in a bowl in the microwave until it’s softened (maybe 30 seconds), and apply it warm, then wipe it off and buff it out after a half hour or so.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

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Kirk650

289 posts in 209 days


#10 posted 05-12-2016 05:01 PM

Regarding raising the grain, as someone said, the oil won’t raise the grain. That said, as wooden cooking tools and cutting boards get washed, the grain will eventually raise. So, it’s a good idea to raise the grain a few times and dewhisker. But, I made a kitchen island for the wife and topped it with a long grain butcher block top in cherry. Since it doesn’t get washed in the sink, the grain has never raised.

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Pabs

196 posts in 2914 days


#11 posted 05-12-2016 05:11 PM

found this regarding beeswax/min oil recipe

http://lumberjocks.com/maugust/blog/21079

-- Pabs

View waho6o9's profile

waho6o9

7171 posts in 2038 days


#12 posted 05-12-2016 05:14 PM

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Pabs

196 posts in 2914 days


#13 posted 05-12-2016 05:33 PM



http://www.amazon.com/Emmets-H2372-1-Quintol-Stuff-Finish/dp/B0000DD2S2/ref=sr_1_12?ie=UTF8&qid=1463073188&sr=8-12&keywords=michigan+maple+block

It s around 40.00 a quart from Amazon

- waho6o9

I noticed it was way cheaper in the states….93 plus tax up here…madness

-- Pabs

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Cooler

270 posts in 304 days


#14 posted 05-12-2016 06:01 PM

I just went through this identical conversation at another site. I just put in a L-shaped butcher block counter top. I don’t use the counter for a cutting board (I have cutting boards for that). So I decided to put down 4 coats of oil based poly. It will be far more durable and require far less maintenance.

Poly, when dry, is food safe, so that is no worry. And as long as you never use any wax or spray it with silicone spray it is a simple light sanding and a fresh coat of the same poly to refinish.

But you must wait for the full cure of the finish before putting it into use. With oil base that is about 200 hours.

-- This post is a hand-crafted natural product. Slight variations in spelling and grammar should not be viewed as flaws or defects, but rather as an integral characteristic of the creative process.

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BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1830 days


#15 posted 05-12-2016 06:12 PM



found this regarding beeswax/min oil recipe

http://lumberjocks.com/maugust/blog/21079

- Pabs

That’s the same beeswax I got. I got it at A.C. Moore craft store, and used a coupon, it was cheap. I only used a little of it, so I keep the block by the bench and rub a couple swipes on my hand plane sole every once in a while, and it makes them glide so easy.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

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