Refinishing rosewood plane tote

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Forum topic by Bugnurd posted 01-01-2015 06:34 PM 1565 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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105 posts in 1766 days

01-01-2015 06:34 PM

I’m restoring a 1920s Stanley #4 handplane. After sanding the tote to about 600 grit, I applied several coats of boiled linseed oil over the course of a week. Then I went out of town for a week leaving it to dry. When I got back, I applied two coats of paste wax with a day in between coats. Overall I’m pretty pleased with the result. Couple of questions though. If I continue to apply coats of wax, will the finish remain matte, or will it get noticeably shinier? Also, the grain on one side has this odd blotchiness, which appeared after the wax was buffed out. Did I perhaps not let the oil dry for long enough?

-- Marc -- Worcester, MA

4 replies so far

View Tim's profile


3812 posts in 2137 days

#1 posted 01-01-2015 08:00 PM

I think the most common recommendation is to just apply the wax directly to the rosewood and buff it. Rosewood and many other tropical woods are oily enough and BLO doesn’t work that great. I can’t tell you want to do now though.

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5849 posts in 3760 days

#2 posted 01-01-2015 10:32 PM

The latest method I use is a good quality oil, then fished with waxed which I then buff ,it seems to last better too without blotching .I was using sanding sealer on my woodturning bowls etc I ended up looking fine,However whenever it got near water or even dampness from fruit or salad ect, it always made the piece very blotchy and ugly.I changed over to this new idea of oil and hard or even beeswax-combination try making your own! rubbed well in over nice oil ,(stained oil if you wish) wax. Do you have a set up for buffing with a lambswool polishing disk or maybe even light calico suitable for power polishing.On a lathe with pigtail of a grinder etc.I wish you well al;though I am still experimenting to get it absolutely correct .Happy 2015

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

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2241 posts in 2065 days

#3 posted 01-02-2015 12:25 AM

My favorite is to strip the tote to bare wood. Then grab some 220-1000 grit paper. Pick your favorite wax and wet sand with the wax through the grits. It make’s a huge difference in the comfort of the tote. Much faster with knobs on a drill press!

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105 posts in 1766 days

#4 posted 01-02-2015 12:33 AM

Thanks for the responses! Live and learn I guess. I think I’ll try wet sanding with wax for the knob. First a little repair job. I got a small chunk of rosewood from a friend to mend this missing chunk.

-- Marc -- Worcester, MA

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