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Forum topic by RussellAP posted 12-30-2013 08:24 PM 1060 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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3104 posts in 2521 days

12-30-2013 08:24 PM

I got a couple 4’ white oak slabs 8/4 that have a nice patina on them. Problem is, the place i got them put parafin wax all over them. Face, ends, sides. Have no idea why they did that, but I want to get all that off and keep the patina on the wood.

Any idea’s that arent messy?

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

8 replies so far

View pintodeluxe's profile


5815 posts in 3048 days

#1 posted 12-30-2013 08:35 PM

That is going to tough. You could try mineral spirits or turpentine to dissolve the wax and remove some of it without affecting the patina.

I would not apply a film forming finish such as lacquer or poly because you run the risk of fisheyes. Stick with oil/wax finishes and you should be fine.

Worst case scenario you can plane it down and start anew.
Have any pictures?

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View joeyinsouthaustin's profile


1294 posts in 2307 days

#2 posted 12-30-2013 08:37 PM

What is the patina? I have an great source for a weathering solution that will bring oak right back to the silvery aged look… If that helps you decide what to do. I can’t think of an easy, or clean way of getting the wax off without taking the patina off.

-- Who is John Galt?

View jmartel's profile


8276 posts in 2384 days

#3 posted 12-30-2013 09:11 PM

What’s the process for the weathering finish, Joey?

-- The quality of one's woodworking is directly related to the amount of flannel worn.

View mds2's profile


310 posts in 2179 days

#4 posted 12-30-2013 09:32 PM

I’d use a hand plane.

View joeyinsouthaustin's profile


1294 posts in 2307 days

#5 posted 12-30-2013 09:34 PM

jmartel It is a commercial product that I use called lifetime wood treatment. It is very easy to use with one exception. It is water based, so you have to be prepared to have some raised grain when used on oak. It turns oak a dark and silvery finish. It can also continue to react if it is not fully sealed or exposed to heavy direct sunlight. For the pictured project I sanded the RSWO to 220 grit in stages. Then I painted it using the same technique you would use with a stain. Then I back brushed it and then wiped it down using a lightly damp cloth, damp with the solution. Then let it dry in an indirect sunlight. I have also brushed it, let it dry, re sanded, and brushed for deeper looks. I have also even brushed it sanded it, sealed it with a sanding sealer, then lightly sand the high spots, and retreat. of course play around with samples to get the desired look. I let it dry all the way, and two coats sealer, three coats CV. It darkens considerable when clear coated, but in the raw has that beautiful silvery greyish look.

This project is not stained, only lifetime and clearcoat.

I will post a close up of the sample when my phone finally mails it.

-- Who is John Galt?

View Arminius's profile


304 posts in 4038 days

#6 posted 12-30-2013 09:39 PM

It will be a bit of a pain in the arse for a surface that large, but you can use a variation on the method used for taking waxes (including paraffin) from crosscountry skis. Just take an iron and some paper towel, slowly iron the paper towel at a low heat and only the pressure of the weight of the iron. The heat melts the wax, the towel will absorb it. Depending on how smooth the surface is, you should be able to completely remove it.

A word to the wise – you will not be able to use the iron for anything other than wax. DAMHIKT

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2925 days

#7 posted 12-31-2013 01:30 AM

Mineral spirits will get rid of the surface wax. And then you could apply shellac over it which would seal any remaining wax away from your final finish. I have used shellac over mineral oil/wax screw up and it sealed it off perfectly!

Use Zinsser’s Seal Coat shellac if you plan to use another finish over it. Otherwise plain Zinsser’s Bullseye shellac.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View RussellAP's profile


3104 posts in 2521 days

#8 posted 12-31-2013 01:40 AM

gfadvm, I usually mix my own shellac. Of course these haven’t been kiln dried, hence the paraffin. Going to find a spot in the sun for a while after I get them cleaned and see how they will turn. Or I could take them to my sawyer right after I clean them and have him stick them in his kiln.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

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