Does anyone use WD-40 as a finish?

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Forum topic by johnhutchinson posted 230 days ago 2488 views 1 time favorited 52 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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595 posts in 256 days

230 days ago

Maybe I should be asking if ANYONE ELSE uses WD-40 as finish, because my brother does. He sprays it on, sands with 400-grit wet/dry paper, and buffs with an old cotton t-shirt. He gets spectacular results and the semi-gloss finish seems to last forever with no discoloration of the wood. Even his work in cherry, which is prone to oxidation, stays bright for years.

-- John - Central Ohio - "too much is never enough"

52 replies so far

View Texcaster's profile


652 posts in 300 days

#1 posted 230 days ago

I haven’t tried it as a polish but it’s great for knocking out wasp nests!

-- Bill....... I listen very closely to the timber and then impose my will.

View Loren's profile


7398 posts in 2274 days

#2 posted 230 days ago

Never. It might function like kerosene, which stains
wood. Some old timers were known to use used
motor oil. Many if not most oils will polymerize from
oxidation and thus sort of harden up on the surface
of the wood.


View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

13740 posts in 965 days

#3 posted 230 days ago

Guess I have never heard of that before. I will be interested to see the posts.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it. - It's not ability that we often lack, but the patience to use our ability

View dawsonbob's profile


381 posts in 382 days

#4 posted 230 days ago

What Can’t you use WD-40 for, other than on your morning cereal or evening martini? I think Ill grab a piece of scrap tomorrow and give it a try.

-- Mistakes are what pave the road to perfection

View johnhutchinson's profile


595 posts in 256 days

#5 posted 230 days ago

I read somewhere that it’s been used to refinish hardwood strip flooring.
Wonder if it’s non-slip? :)

What my brother seems to be doing is creating a micro-filler slurry for the wood. I recently saw something on Woodsmith where Don was using a similar technique … but not with WD-40.

-- John - Central Ohio - "too much is never enough"

View patron's profile


13001 posts in 1968 days

#6 posted 230 days ago

we used automatic transmission fluid
on the teak at a boat company i worked for in florida

it was cheaper than teak oil

worked ok

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View bowedcurly's profile


479 posts in 355 days

#7 posted 230 days ago

gonna try it

-- Staining killed the wood<<<<<>>>>>Dyeing gave it life

View BentheViking's profile


1752 posts in 1190 days

#8 posted 230 days ago

follow up question. Has anyone used duck tape as a finish?

yeah me either!

-- It's made of wood. Real sturdy.--Chubbs Peterson

View johnhutchinson's profile


595 posts in 256 days

#9 posted 229 days ago

Okay, go ahead, knock yourself out with a good yuck. :)

He used WD-40 exclusively on the rotary box we published with American Woodworker. We told them what he used, but I don’t think they believed it because they never revealed the “secret”.

-- John - Central Ohio - "too much is never enough"

View luv2learn's profile


1674 posts in 929 days

#10 posted 229 days ago

I never heard of using WD-40 as a finish but then again I haven’t heard about many things that work as a finish. I guess I will have to give this a go myself :-)

-- Lee - Northern idaho~"If the women don't find you handsome, at least they ought to find you handy"~ Red Green

View lab7654's profile


250 posts in 873 days

#11 posted 229 days ago

How does it smell after it…”cures”? The smell of it gives me a headache whenever I use it. I wonder if it repels water?

-- Tristin King -- When in doubt, sand it.

View doubleDD's profile


2392 posts in 670 days

#12 posted 229 days ago

WE used it as a touch up for trim work that was already finished. Worked great.

-- --Dave, Downers Grove, Il. When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams

View oldnovice's profile


3688 posts in 1994 days

#13 posted 229 days ago

I have seen others use it but I have never tried it as I think the smell would never really go away and that would not be very desirable.

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View NormG's profile


4088 posts in 1630 days

#14 posted 229 days ago

You learn something new daily

-- Norman

View johnhutchinson's profile


595 posts in 256 days

#15 posted 229 days ago

For those who have been asking about a smell after it cures, there is none that I can detect.

I think the WD-40 finish must be a wooden clockmaker “secret”. That’s my brother’s primary area of interest. Makes sense, I guess.

-- John - Central Ohio - "too much is never enough"

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