Weathered wood

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Forum topic by AZ4ME posted 01-11-2013 09:38 AM 1122 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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11 posts in 1960 days

01-11-2013 09:38 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question tip finishing refurbishing rustic

Hey guys, I’m a new member but have been reading along and admiring your projects for quite some time.
I am doing a project that combines a couple of woods, one of which is parts of an old weathered wagon wheel. It has been outside and subjected to the elements for quite some time. What type of a finish would I use on this old wood? I would like it to look pretty much as is while preserving and protecting it for years to come. Thanks in advance for the help.

9 replies so far

View Kreegan's profile


1452 posts in 2144 days

#1 posted 01-11-2013 04:13 PM

Protect in what way? From water? Wear? Sun?

View AZ4ME's profile


11 posts in 1960 days

#2 posted 01-11-2013 10:41 PM

The wheel parts will be used for an indoor project, together with another wood, probably oak, maybe maple. The wheels were outside in the Dakotas for many years so you can imagine what type of weather they were subjected to there. They have been in Arizona, also outside for the last 10 years or so, mostly some rain and extreme heat and sun.
I would like to have them look pretty much as is while protecting and preserving them from here on out. Thanks.

View rrww's profile


263 posts in 2110 days

#3 posted 01-11-2013 10:54 PM

I use a bunch of old barnwood for indoor projects. All I do is make sure the wood is dry, and does not have any rot, and is insect free by running it though a kiln. I have played with adding topcoats and it always darkens and makes it look fake. You loose a lot of the patina.

View Post_Oakie's profile


84 posts in 2151 days

#4 posted 01-11-2013 11:45 PM

Do you want a finish that is consistent with the finish on the other parts? If some of the wood is soft or in danger of breaking off, I would consider a thin epoxy, like the WEST system, to stabilize it. Try it on a piece of old barn wood first to see if the finish suits you.

-- Good judgement comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgement.

View teejk's profile


1215 posts in 2682 days

#5 posted 01-12-2013 12:02 AM

If truly weathered wood, not so sure I’d touch it at all…wagon wheel has to be >50 years old and if still not dust, can’t be any bugs in it. if you want to seal it, I guess plain old sanding sealer would work (probably the same as a watered satin finish poly)...seal the pores without changing the texture/patina.

I did use a product years ago for “antiquing” new wood to make it look old (I was making little barns for little collector tractors). The technique has become so popular now that the brand doesn’t matter. Google “antiquing” and get ready to read a lot.

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

29226 posts in 2335 days

#6 posted 01-12-2013 12:32 AM

I use water based poly on most things. Doesn’t yellow, dries clear.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View AZ4ME's profile


11 posts in 1960 days

#7 posted 01-12-2013 02:47 AM

Thanks for the replies guys, I have plenty of pieces that I will not be using in my project, I will try a couple of the water based poly products on them so I can see the effect it has. Doesn’t necessarily need to be finished I guess since it will be indoors but didn’t know for sure.

View Tootles's profile


808 posts in 2499 days

#8 posted 01-12-2013 09:47 AM

The thought that came to my mind was not so much about the finishing, but about the moisture content of the wagon wheel wood. If it is significantly different to the other wood that you are using, could you be asking for expansion problems somewhere along the way?

I ask the question because I do not know the answer, but I’m sure there are many others who could give an opinion.

-- I may have lost my marbles, but I still have my love of woodworking

View AZ4ME's profile


11 posts in 1960 days

#9 posted 01-17-2013 03:15 PM

I will check moisture content of all wood before building, hopefully it won’t be a problem since the two woods won’t be fastened together in a traditional way but more like a saddle or cradle type situation with pins. I hadn’t thought of that though so thanks for the input.

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