LumberJocks

BLO - Poly combination - Benefits?

  • Advertise with us

« back to Finishing forum

Forum topic by becikeja posted 09-10-2017 04:50 PM 735 views 0 times favorited 28 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View becikeja's profile

becikeja

804 posts in 2570 days


09-10-2017 04:50 PM

I see several people putting BLO on first then applying a polyurethane.
If I am using poly, I typically just go ahead and use poly on the first coat as well.
I am wondering what the advantages of applying BLO are?

-- Don't outsmart your common sense


28 replies so far

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4752 posts in 3718 days


#1 posted 09-10-2017 05:13 PM

Oil based poly or water based?
Oil (BLO) will add to the grain enhancement. BLO under oil based will just be another way to further the grain “glow”. Water based poly is just a clear coat. Not much will be added to the grain enhancement of the natural wood.
Just my thoughts.
Bill

-- bill@magraphics.us

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4617 posts in 2251 days


#2 posted 09-10-2017 05:42 PM

Following what Bill said: BLO is best used as a coloring/grain enhancer. Some guy named Michael Dresner (soemthing like) who is the finishing writer for one of the magazines wrote an article a few years back. He offered the opion that under an oil based finish (like varnish) the BLO does nothing the varnish itself wouldn’t do without the BLO; offering photos to demonstrate his position. I mostly agree with that, the oil based varnish does pretty much the same thing for the wood as the BLO does, so you are just adding an unneeded step. But what Bill said about the waterborne finishes is true….many of them are water clear (some have a dye added to mimic an oil finish), so the BLO may be of use in that case. One thing, though. The BLO has to dry longer before applying a waterborne.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View Rick_M's profile

Rick_M

10101 posts in 2137 days


#3 posted 09-10-2017 07:52 PM

You might try samples both ways and see what you like. There are times I like the neutral appearance of waterbase. BLO will give the wood a yellow hue.

-- http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View becikeja's profile

becikeja

804 posts in 2570 days


#4 posted 09-10-2017 10:51 PM

Thanks for the info. I mostly use an oil based poly.
I have avoided the water based because I line the effect of the oil on the coloring. Sounds like using BLO might give me the best of both worlds.

-- Don't outsmart your common sense

View jonah's profile

jonah

1151 posts in 3056 days


#5 posted 09-10-2017 11:15 PM

It’s worth noting that it takes absolutely forever for BLO to cure enough to be able to put another finish overtop of it. The one and only time I tried, I gave up after three days and just went without the poly.

View ArtMann's profile

ArtMann

570 posts in 573 days


#6 posted 09-11-2017 12:48 AM

I agree with Fred. I experimented with wipe on solvent based polyurethane with and without the boiled linseed oil and I couldn’t tell much difference in the final appearance. I abandoned BLO at that point. It isn’t too expensive just to try it both ways on scrap and see if the extra step and drying time is worth it.

View Rick_M's profile

Rick_M

10101 posts in 2137 days


#7 posted 09-11-2017 03:53 AM

You can topcoat BLO with shellac, it doesn’t have to be cured just wipe it down.

-- http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View OSU55's profile

OSU55

1342 posts in 1747 days


#8 posted 09-11-2017 11:58 AM

Shellac is excellent under wb finishes. It provides the grain enhancement, or chatoyance, like blo and dries quickly. Blo does nothing when using oil based poly, except weaken the finish. Havent found any use for blo after trying for several years.

View Dustin's profile

Dustin

333 posts in 498 days


#9 posted 09-11-2017 12:23 PM

After reading this, I’m wondering what oil-based poly’s everyone is using? I’ve used BLO under poly in my last two projects to darken the color and pop the grain, then topcoated with Minwax wipe-on. The test pieces I did with just poly were significantly lighter. Is there a more preferred brand I could be using that would allow me to skip this step?

-- "Ladies, if your husband says he'll get to it, he'll get to it. No need to remind him about it every 6 months."

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4617 posts in 2251 days


#10 posted 09-11-2017 01:47 PM

I don’t use polyanything, so the oil based varnishes I prefer and use are the ones that are alkyd resin based. My favorite if Pratt and Lambert 38 (which has a lot less amber than others) but the SW Fast Dry Oil varnish is also a very good product.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View OSU55's profile

OSU55

1342 posts in 1747 days


#11 posted 09-13-2017 12:29 PM

Dustin, here is info on using dye mixed with poly or other varnish.
I’ve tested many varnishes over the years, poly/alkyd/phenolic, and settled on MW. A lot of the “why” has to do with availability – I used some nonpoly varnishes years ago that worked well for for thicker film rubbed out hi gloss finishes, but they arent available anymore (I now use wb for such finishes). I use poly for thinner film wipe on finishes a lot, and found regular MW thinned worked as well as anything and was available about anywhere.

View Dustin's profile

Dustin

333 posts in 498 days


#12 posted 09-13-2017 01:34 PM



Dustin, here is info on using dye mixed with poly or other varnish.
I ve tested many varnishes over the years, poly/alkyd/phenolic, and settled on MW. A lot of the “why” has to do with availability – I used some nonpoly varnishes years ago that worked well for for thicker film rubbed out hi gloss finishes, but they arent available anymore (I now use wb for such finishes). I use poly for thinner film wipe on finishes a lot, and found regular MW thinned worked as well as anything and was available about anywhere.

- OSU55

Oddly enough, I’ve been perusing some videos from the Wood Whisperer since last night discussing the same approach. I’ll definitely give it a try when I get time to play around. I’ve been pretty happy myself using MW’s wipe-on products, but I guess sometimes I fall into the trap of chasing the BBD.

-- "Ladies, if your husband says he'll get to it, he'll get to it. No need to remind him about it every 6 months."

View jonah's profile

jonah

1151 posts in 3056 days


#13 posted 09-13-2017 07:03 PM

Minwax, in my opinion, looks like trash. It produces a really plasticky surface that just doesn’t look good. Arm-R-Seal gives a much, much better looking finish, and they’re roughly the same price.

View becikeja's profile

becikeja

804 posts in 2570 days


#14 posted 09-13-2017 10:49 PM

I have been very happy with General Finishes brand Arm-R-Seal

-- Don't outsmart your common sense

View OSU55's profile

OSU55

1342 posts in 1747 days


#15 posted 09-14-2017 12:21 PM

Viscosity, sheen, and application method have everything to do with what the final finish looks like.

showing 1 through 15 of 28 replies

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com