Festool Owners Group

GENERAL DISCUSSIONS => Finishing and Painting => Topic started by: ear3 on December 10, 2016, 10:19 AM

Title: Cold weather oiling
Post by: ear3 on December 10, 2016, 10:19 AM
I'm finishing up my redesigned hard maple workbench in my garage/shop, and am wondering what, if anything can be done about doing a finish to protect the wood at this point, given that we have now entered winter here on the east coast and my shop is (still) unheated.

Normally I would do some danish oil, followed by hand wiped poly, but I'm pretty sure neither one of those can be used at the current temperature  (it's below 40). Alternatively I could do a coat of paste wax, but I'm worried that this would rule out doing any subsequent finish, unless I were to sand the heck out of it first to remove the wax (which I don't want to do).  Is there an oil or other protective coating that works in the cold? Or should I just wait until spring, or maybe, as is increasingly common with our current climate, be ready for action when we have an unusually mild winter day?
Title: Re: Could weather oiling
Post by: DrD on December 10, 2016, 10:21 AM
That is one nice work bench!

Don
Title: Re: Could weather oiling
Post by: DrD on December 10, 2016, 10:34 AM
There are several boat builders in Door County, WI that work thru-out the winter, perhaps they could advise:
   Great Lakes Yacht Service, 61 Michigan St, Sturgeon Bay • (920) 746-6247
   DC Docks and Boat Lifts, 7559 State Highway 42 57, Sturgeon Bay • (920) 743-7686
   Portside Builders, Inc., 810 S Lansing Ave, Sturgeon Bay • (920) 746-1092
   Bay Shipbuilding Company, 605 N 3rd Ave, Sturgeon Bay • (920) 743-5524

Don
Title: Re: Could weather oiling
Post by: Bert Vanderveen on December 10, 2016, 10:45 AM
Linseed oil thinned with natural turpentine and a small percentage of siccative (drying/hardening agent). Try it with an off cut to see if it cures enough. Several layers may need to be applied.
Title: Re: Could weather oiling
Post by: Scott in Bend on December 10, 2016, 10:46 AM
Nice bench, Edward.  I don't know what brand of danish oil you use.  But, Watco recommends application at an ambient temperature range of 60 to 90F.  I would leave it bare until the temperature rises in the Spring.
Title: Re: Cold weather oiling
Post by: Matthewajones on December 10, 2016, 11:44 AM
That's a freaking great looking bench! Kudos Edward.....oh yeah, just wait for a warm day IMHO.
Title: Re: Cold weather oiling
Post by: Tim Raleigh on December 10, 2016, 12:02 PM
I wouldn't put anything on it. Makes it easier for the top to grip what you are working on etc.
If you spill something on it, plane or sand it off.
Sweat and blood are the only finish a work bench should get in my opinion.
Nice build by the way.
Tim
Title: Re: Cold weather oiling
Post by: HarveyWildes on December 10, 2016, 04:02 PM
Awesome!  Just curiously, how thick is the top?  And... I assume the holes are 20mm rather than 3/4"?

I'd wait until spring or get a small heater for the space.  I had a garage shop in a ~900 ft2 space (shared with cars) and a 5000 BTU (propane  :P) heater kept it over 60 on all but the coldest (< 0F) nights.

But really, I'm not sure if the finish has really been needed on mine.  Makes the glue a little easier to pop off, maybe, but I always put down paper when I glue anyway.  I've got a role of the cheap red paper that is used to protect floors during messy construction, and it works great for that.
Title: Re: Cold weather oiling
Post by: ear3 on December 10, 2016, 04:46 PM
Thanks. Sounds like i will heed advice and wait for warmer temps.

Gonna post a longer build thread shortly with all the process pics and dimensions. In short, 1 1/2" top (with 3 3/4 laminate and end cap) -- that thickness was chosen to keep it usable as an mft style bench with the 20mm holes, but sturdy enough for serious hand tool work.
Title: Re: Cold weather oiling
Post by: Holmz on December 10, 2016, 06:01 PM
$50 ceramic heater will make your space nice and toasty. Then no issues applying your oil finish.

I use Lasko ceramic heater on the floor in the winter and a window mounted AC unit in a side wall of my shed. 60-80 degree range all year long.

An electric blanket may also work, but would be a mess laying in/on oil. But may be good to initially warm the wood.