Reclaimed Wood Table Top Finish HELP!!

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Forum topic by jscore08 posted 05-16-2014 07:15 PM 1109 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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4 posts in 1476 days

05-16-2014 07:15 PM

Topic tags/keywords: ash cedar pine finishing sanding rustic question

Hey guys – so I have made a couple table tops out of 120+ year barn wood that was found in the rafters of the barn as extra wood. So theres no holes, no damage, just beautiful patina on this reclaimed wood. I don’t want to sand the top or do much to it at all – but my question is – whats the best way to keep the natural look but seal it. The patina is just too beautiful to mess around with – but it is being used as a coffee table and a dining table – so I feel like I need to seal it somehow. I tried a satin polyurethane finish that I rolled on – and it turned out too glossy (no idea why). Any suggestions of a good way to keep this as natural but also as safe from cups/drinks/etc. Any tips or advice is greatly appreciated.

4 replies so far

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2687 days

#1 posted 05-17-2014 01:22 AM

You can knock the gloss back where you want with steel wool and wax. Or a gray Scotchbrite pad and wax.

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

View TheWoodenOyster's profile


1317 posts in 1932 days

#2 posted 05-17-2014 01:36 AM

This may just be me, but I don’t really feel like barnwood that is rustic in nature needs a totally waterproof and alcohol proof coating such as polyurethane. You could just oil it with Mineral oil or Tung oil. That wouldn’t make it totally waterproof, but it would add protection. It is possible that it might get rings on it, but it really depends on the surface of the wood, and a barnwood table doesn’t seem like something that needs to be protected from water rings to me. All that said, if you do want a waterproof and foodproof finish, just leave the poly on there and knock the gloss off as gfadvm says above.

Just a heads up after reading over this, oil won’t really soak in thru poly, so just leave the poly on and take the gloss off.

-- The Wood Is Your Oyster

View AnonymousRequest's profile


861 posts in 1546 days

#3 posted 05-17-2014 02:26 AM

I’d prep it lightly with a wire brush, hit it with the air hose and do what gfadvm and oyster said.

View kdc68's profile


2657 posts in 2274 days

#4 posted 05-17-2014 02:31 AM

another vote for knocking the gloss back with steel wool & wax

-- Measure "at least" twice and cut once

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