What can you use under water based poly?

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Forum topic by mporter posted 11-25-2013 12:47 AM 943 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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253 posts in 2573 days

11-25-2013 12:47 AM

Can you use BLO? Amber shellac? I am finishing a walnut table top and want a little amber color to it. I put 4 coats of straight water based poly on the bottom of the table today and I hate it. It is so clear that it looks like there is no finish on the table at all.

6 replies so far

View Grandpa's profile


3259 posts in 2671 days

#1 posted 11-25-2013 12:52 AM

The only water based poly I have ever used went on over oil based wiping stain. It still looks good and is about 18 years old.

View Mark Davisson's profile

Mark Davisson

597 posts in 3313 days

#2 posted 11-25-2013 12:55 AM

BLO will be fine. Tung oil would also be fine. Both will provide an amber color, but the tung oil will probably provide a little more than the BLO. Wait a few days before applying the poly.

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

View Rick's profile


9593 posts in 3028 days

#3 posted 11-25-2013 04:32 AM

I’ve always used Min Wax Stain. LOTS of Colors available in their selection. I also do not wipe it off. I just brush it in until I get the Tone I’m looking for and It’s EVENLY Spread.

Allow at least an Overnight Dry. You should be able to tell if it’s dry enough to start with the Water Based Poly.

Probably 3 Coats. Some use Sandpaper in between. I use 000 Steel Wool. Wipe it down WELL between Coats. I usually also Vacuum It.

That (Min Wax Also) Poly dries VERY Quickly! To The Touch (Depending on The Brand).

I would allow about 2/3 Hours between coats however.

As we all know ANY Finish dries from the Outside in.

-- LIFE is what happens when you're planning on doing Other Things!

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4984 posts in 2489 days

#4 posted 11-25-2013 12:31 PM

BLO is fine, but you want to wait a little longer for it to cure. I would wait at least several days before topcoating with a waterborne. As for shellac, any of them are fine but I suggest you make sure it’s a dewaxed shellac (Zinnser amber is not). There might be an adhesion problem between the waterborne and the waxy shellac. If you are in a hurry, you could use the BLO, put dewaxed shellac on it the next day, and then top coat. The shellac will dry very quickly so that would speed the process up. Or you could just take a chance with the amber shellac, there’s mixed results on the adhesion problem so a good chance it just make work well.

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

View CharlesNeil's profile


2399 posts in 3866 days

#5 posted 11-25-2013 01:28 PM

I would suggest you wait at least a week if using BLO or a pure tung oil, these are not the same animals they used to be and they simply do not dry as well. You would be be much safer with the shellac , or putting a coat of shellac over the BLO after it has dried.

Shellac is your best assurance of good adhesion with water base finishes

View Clint Searl's profile

Clint Searl

1533 posts in 2357 days

#6 posted 11-25-2013 01:57 PM

BLO is only good for starting fires. The easiest and most reliable is an oil based stain. I like ZAR. Wipe on; dry for 3 days; top with a quality waterborne.

-- Clint Searl....Ya can no more do what ya don't know how than ya can git back from where ya ain't been

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