BLO finish

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Woodchipper

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I have done a couple of pens with BLO and it gives a nice satin finish. I was turning a blank earlier and came up with a question.
Is it better to apply BLO at room temperature or can it be heated a bit for better application? Best way to heat? Thanks in advance.
 
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JimB

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I never heard of anyone heating BLO to apply it. I believe it is extremely flammable so unless you want to burn down your shop and house it is not a good idea. Of course, i could be wrong.
 

randyrls

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Feb 2, 2006
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Harrisburg, PA 17112
I have done a couple of pens with BLO and it gives a nice satin finish. I was turning a blank earlier and came up with a question.
Is it better to apply BLO at room temperature or can it be heated a bit for better application? Best way to heat? Thanks in advance.
John; Be careful disposing of any rags or towels you use with BLO. BLO gives off heat during the curing process. Don't throw wadded up towels into your trash can. Lay them out flat and let them dry completely before disposal. For pens you likely are not using enough BLO to be dangerous, but for larger projects spontaneous combustion is a real possibility

Addendum; The BLO finish on the pen will not last. My preferred way of finishing wood pens is to apply a thin CA finish (about 4 coats). Sand with wet sandpaper used wet from 400 to 1000 grit, then 0000 steel wool used dry. The result looks like no finish at all, but has the hardness of CA and resists finger oils and dirt.
 

chartle

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Pgh, PA
A standard BLO Finish is something like a coat a day for a week, a coat a week for a month, a coat a month for a year and then once a year. But this is furniture not something you touch on a daily basis.

But if you buff the BLO with a paper towel after you apply it I would think thats as hot as you would want to go.

I do use BLO in combination with CA. The BLO acts as a catalyst so you don't use normal accelerator.

If you want a less gloss finish you should look into one of the Fiction finishes starting with "Shine juice" (1/3 BLO, 1/3 shellac/1/3 DNA) or a commercial one like Shellawax Liquid Friction Polish
 

Woodchipper

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Thanks to all. Cliff, I don't have any shellac but may get a small container. A fellow who does a bunch of pens a year used alternate coats of BOL and CA. Now he goes strictly CA.
Towels with CA or BLO go on the concrete floor to dry. I have put them in a metal soup can with water and immerse them with a stick. I never put oily rags, CA, or BLO wadded up anywhere. Oil rags are spread out on something metal and not near anything combustible.
I always marvel at furniture cushions along the road. Hello? You would think people would think to secure them after years of seeing them along the road.
 
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