LumberJocks

Mahagony and cherry tabletop

  • Advertise with us

« back to Finishing forum

Forum topic by WalkerTexasRanger posted 02-18-2018 10:25 PM 494 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View WalkerTexasRanger's profile

WalkerTexasRanger

29 posts in 1323 days


02-18-2018 10:25 PM

I just finished a dining tabletop. The top is made from 2” alternating slats of African mahogany and cherry surrounded by amahogany 4” band. I want to keep it as light as possible. I tried danish oil and tung oil but it leaves the wood darker than I would like. Any suggestions for finishing and keeping this top lighter. Also, I have some very slight imperfections on my end joints where I joined the 2” slats to a solid mahogany end piece. Any suggestions on products to fill these cracks..


9 replies so far

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

2050 posts in 1412 days


#1 posted 02-18-2018 10:37 PM

Any finish is going to darken it. Water based polyurethane probably yields the least darkening effect in my experience but can leave the wood looking a little like it is coated in plastic if applied too thick. It will be more durable than Danish or tung oil on a table top. A blonde shellac would probably be the next but is probably not durable enough for a dining table.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

View bbasiaga's profile

bbasiaga

1234 posts in 2020 days


#2 posted 02-18-2018 10:38 PM

Clear shellac will add a light yellow tint. Something like General Finishes High Performance water based top coat is perfectly clear, or at least as close to perfectly clear as possible.

Brian

-- Part of engineering is to know when to put your calculator down and pick up your tools.

View WyattCo's profile

WyattCo

86 posts in 129 days


#3 posted 02-18-2018 11:01 PM

Brushing lacquer.

View CaptainKlutz's profile

CaptainKlutz

282 posts in 1519 days


#4 posted 02-18-2018 11:09 PM

Any oil will darken the wood.
Most varnish/poly will darken wood, but only slightly due yellow tone added.
Blonde Shellac is least color adding among typical finishes.

Only finish that will not add any color to wood is called a water-white finish, and the list of types is very short.
Included are a few catalyzed spray on lacquers and/or some water based acrylic/poly blends. Since typical varnish/shellac/lacquer wood finish always adds some (yellow) tone to wood, many “off-the-shelf” water based finishes add similar tones making “water-white” harder to find. Best source for durable dining table “water white” finish would be an industrial paint supply house that sells to cabinet shops. Most likely require a spray on finish.

PS – Your cherry wood is going to darken naturally and will make it hard to keep the original look of the wood top over time, even with a water-white finish? Be really curious to see pictures when new and as it ages.

Best Luck.

-- I'm an engineer not a woodworker, but I can randomly find useful tools and furniture inside a pile of lumber!

View caboxmaker's profile

caboxmaker

281 posts in 413 days


#5 posted 02-19-2018 01:13 AM

Looking forward to seeing the table.

View Jeff Bremer's profile

Jeff Bremer

14 posts in 121 days


#6 posted 02-21-2018 06:18 AM

Also, I have some very slight imperfections on my end joints where I joined the 2” slats to a solid mahogany end piece. Any suggestions on products to fill these cracks.

To fill the cracks, take some sanding dust and mix it with a small amount of shellac until you have the consistency of putty. Press the putty into the crack and let it dry (won’t take long), then sand. You may need to do more than one application.

A warning though, the putty will stain darker than the wood, so if the crack is in a very visible spot, you might want to experiment with sanding dust from a lighter wood.

I recently read, but haven’t tried yet, that sanding immediately after pressing the putty into the crack will help match the color to the stained wood.

Good luck!

View JP4LSU's profile

JP4LSU

83 posts in 172 days


#7 posted 02-21-2018 01:02 PM



Clear shellac will add a light yellow tint. Something like General Finishes High Performance water based top coat is perfectly clear, or at least as close to perfectly clear as possible.

Brian

- bbasiaga

+1 on General Finishes. I used a water based exterior finish on a front door that I stripped the stain off of. It didn’t darken the wood at all and if there are repairs needed, just sand it a little and put another coat on.

I’m really liking the finish on the door. If I’m not using a Danish or Tung oil on a piece I would consider these products.
-JP

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

4765 posts in 2376 days


#8 posted 02-21-2018 02:00 PM

Both cherry and mahogany will darken over time as their natural patina develops, so I think your efforts to keep it light will be futile. In that sense I don’t think it matters what type of finish you use.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View sras's profile

sras

4811 posts in 3154 days


#9 posted 02-21-2018 02:25 PM

If you want to keep the wood in the original color the best solution I know of is a high end marine finish. It is a 2 part linear polyurethane. Perfectly clear and the highest UV blocking rating I have seen. The UV blocking slows the natural darkening of woods like cherry & mahogany. Downside – it’s expensive!

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

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