What can be put over linseed oil?

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Forum topic by Purrmaster posted 10-22-2013 10:11 AM 8042 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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915 posts in 2056 days

10-22-2013 10:11 AM

I may be throwing a table out of maple together. I used boiled linseed oil on a small project out of maple previously and I really liked the look of it. But if I make a table I’ve got to put something more protective than oil on it.

But I’d still like to initially coat it with BLO. The question is, what can I put on top of it? I was thinking either oil based polyurethane or nitrocellulose lacquer. I’ve read using water base finishes over BLO is not a good idea.

I realize I will have to wait for the oil to cure, probably at least a week, before I top it with anything.


10 replies so far

View coachmancuso's profile


259 posts in 1895 days

#1 posted 10-22-2013 10:34 AM

I have used wipe on poly before, it came out good

-- Coach Mancuso

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4949 posts in 2457 days

#2 posted 10-22-2013 11:07 AM

You can topcoat it with anything, the key is the curing time allowed. With waterborne it may pay to wait as long as a week before topcoating, but almost everything else can be put on within a day or so. Shellac can sometimes be put on the same day. This all assumes you applied the BLO as one would do normally: apply, let it sit a little, then wipe it off. If you’re topcoating BLO, there is very little reason to apply more than one application (of BLO).

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

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915 posts in 2056 days

#3 posted 10-22-2013 11:19 AM

On the last maple thing I used BLO on it took several coats to get a deep, amber tone to it and really bring out the grain.

I also have raw tung oil on hand that I suppose I could use. I don’t know if it will look as good (or possibly better) on maple as boiled linseed oil.

View Mark Davisson's profile

Mark Davisson

597 posts in 3281 days

#4 posted 10-22-2013 11:27 AM

Ditto what Fred said. And ditto what coach said.

I’d use BLO rather than tung oil, but there’s not a lot of difference between the two.

I’ve also had good success with spray-on shellac over BLO.

-- I'm selfless because it feels so good!

View crank49's profile


4030 posts in 2934 days

#5 posted 10-22-2013 03:49 PM

BLO is designed to mix with other finishes. One of the intended uses of BLO is to mix with paints and finishes to improve their coating/flowability properties. Speaking of oil based finishes here.

View Grandpa's profile


3259 posts in 2639 days

#6 posted 10-22-2013 09:26 PM

Years ago in school we oiled cedar chests to bring out the grain then we used lacquer over it. I have a 50 year old chest that still looks like new. We used Johnson’s paste wax on the lacquer and to this day it is a great finish. I would think anything you can use over oil based stain would work for sure. BTW we did use sanding sealer on the oiled cedar with lacquer over that.

View CharlesA's profile


3312 posts in 1761 days

#7 posted 10-22-2013 09:41 PM

What does the sanding sealer do for the cedar if you’re using lacquer?

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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3259 posts in 2639 days

#8 posted 10-23-2013 03:42 AM

It would seem to me that the sanding sealer would do nothing. The wood is sealed. I just know that was the process used back then. We oiled it, sealed it then 3 coats of lacquer. It looked great then and now. It has been in a bedroom all those years so there was not a lot of traffic or bright light in there.

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915 posts in 2056 days

#9 posted 10-28-2013 12:47 PM

Putting on sanding sealer (at least for lacquer) is actually just to make it easier to sand the lacquer. The sanding sealer soap in it that makes sanding easier. I usually use sanding sealer, even on cedar (in fact I am doing so right now) because the greater ease of sanding is worth it.

I’m going to go with BLO and then wipe on poly. I may test a piece with the tung oil and see what happens.

View Grandpa's profile


3259 posts in 2639 days

#10 posted 10-28-2013 05:14 PM

Thanks for the answer on the sealer. Always good to know. Now if I can remember it.

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