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How to finish mahogany on a garden bench.

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Forum topic by Emma Walker posted 336 days ago 1213 views 0 times favorited 21 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Emma Walker

560 posts in 711 days


336 days ago

I got a pair if cast iron garden bench side from an old garden bench. I had them sandblasted and powder coated. I’m replacing the wooden slats with mahogany. I need to know what the best way is to finish these mahogany slats. I want to bring out the dark color of the mahogany while also making it as resistant as possible to Wisconsin weather.

-- I'm a twisted 2x4 in a pile of straight lumber.


21 replies so far

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

3348 posts in 2561 days


#1 posted 336 days ago

Good luck!
ANY finish used outdoors will have to be renewed often. There are those who would suggest a marine varnish, but even that would have to be touched up.
Oil? Could be, but maintain often.
AFAIK, ain’t no fool proof exterior finish that wouldn’t need the care.
Kinda like a deck.
Bill

-- bill@magraphics.us

View Emma Walker's profile

Emma Walker

560 posts in 711 days


#2 posted 336 days ago

Could I bring out the color using BLO and then put something like Tompsons Water Seal over the top of it?

-- I'm a twisted 2x4 in a pile of straight lumber.

View Jesse.R's profile

Jesse.R

50 posts in 1526 days


#3 posted 336 days ago

any exterior oil based finish will bring out the color just fine. if its going to be out in the weather theres no way around needing to refinish it periodically. about once a year.

-- jesse

View mesquite22's profile

mesquite22

42 posts in 1270 days


#4 posted 336 days ago

http://www.hempshield.net/ this works well

View Don W's profile (online now)

Don W

14645 posts in 1168 days


#5 posted 336 days ago

Marine Varnish over BLO.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

View Roger's profile

Roger

14139 posts in 1405 days


#6 posted 336 days ago

I like thinned out BLO to help the grain pop a bit. The top coat should be something for the outdoors for sure. Good luck with your project. I’m sure it’ll be awesome

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Kentuk55@bellsouth.net

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11639 posts in 2289 days


#7 posted 336 days ago

Thanks for asking the question, Emma : )
That hempseed oil looks pretty promising…thanks, mesquite22 : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View Emma Walker's profile

Emma Walker

560 posts in 711 days


#8 posted 335 days ago

Don W
By “Marine Varnish over BLO” do you mean Marine Varnish instead of BLO or BLO first and then Marine Varnish?

-- I'm a twisted 2x4 in a pile of straight lumber.

View Don W's profile (online now)

Don W

14645 posts in 1168 days


#9 posted 335 days ago

BLO first and then Marine Varnish. BLO will bring out the grain. Marine Varnish will protect it.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

View LakeLover's profile

LakeLover

274 posts in 540 days


#10 posted 335 days ago

If you are bolting the wood to the metal. Make sure you seal the holes. Put something between the metal bases and wood.

View Emma Walker's profile

Emma Walker

560 posts in 711 days


#11 posted 335 days ago

LakeLover,

like a nylon washer?

-- I'm a twisted 2x4 in a pile of straight lumber.

View Emma Walker's profile

Emma Walker

560 posts in 711 days


#12 posted 335 days ago

Could I add just a pinch of stain to thinned out BLO to help darken the wood? Like maybe a table spoon to a 12 oz mixture of BLO and mineral spirits.

-- I'm a twisted 2x4 in a pile of straight lumber.

View Don W's profile (online now)

Don W

14645 posts in 1168 days


#13 posted 335 days ago

If you want to darken it, I’d use a colored Danish oil instead of BLO. Pick your color.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

View Emma Walker's profile

Emma Walker

560 posts in 711 days


#14 posted 335 days ago

Thanks Don,

I picked mahogany because it’s most resistant to mold and bugs but I was surprised at how light colored it is.

-- I'm a twisted 2x4 in a pile of straight lumber.

View ScaleShipWright's profile

ScaleShipWright

240 posts in 486 days


#15 posted 335 days ago

Hi Emma, it’s nice to have you back in LJ.

I second Dan’s suggestion about Danish oil to darken wood. BTW I have found an article in Fine Woodworking about outdoor finish; the author suggests the use of an epoxy sealer under marine varnish to obtain a more durable finish:

http://www.finewoodworking.com/item/13849/the-ultimate-outdoor-finish

Alessandro

-- God exists... But relax, He's not you!

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