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Best technique for mantle piece

7/10/15       
Ken Culbertson Member

Am making a walnut mantle for a customer and was wanting to see what techniques would be best to bring out the grain, also there will be one soft maple butterfly in a crack in the walnut

7/11/15       #2: Best technique for mantle piece ...
Pete Anderson Member

I think that a walnut stain, a light brown, finished with a conversion varnish looks great and has the least maintenance.
The figure will really show the best with a satin finish

7/11/15       #3: Best technique for mantle piece ...
RobertJ

First coat.......a reduced, very reduced layer of shellac.....from flakes. Experiment!!

7/11/15       #4: Best technique for mantle piece ...
John Member

I almost never use BLO, but it looks great on walnut; really brings out the depth, color, and highlights in the grain. I wipe on a very light coat, apply a coat of Sealcoat shellac the next day and then my topcoats.

John

7/12/15       #5: Best technique for mantle piece ...
rich c.

walnut does just fine on it's own. Just clear coat.

7/12/15       #6: Best technique for mantle piece ...
RobertJ

Walnut veneer is totally different than solid walnut boards....I assume the Mantle is being made with solid stock and will show some sap wood. A light stain on walnut would be appropriate in this instance.

7/12/15       #7: Best technique for mantle piece ...
Ken Culbertson

I felled the tree, milled the wood, air dried the wood, and kiln dried the wood. No sap wood present.


View higher quality, full size image (1200 X 900)


View higher quality, full size image (1200 X 900)

7/12/15       #8: Best technique for mantle piece ...
RobertJ

If I was finishing the piece as shown in the photo.....would still use a stain or dye or blo or shellac; not a simple clear coat.

If you have some sample stock, best experiment with what you have before making common mistakes that you may regret.

7/12/15       #9: Best technique for mantle piece ...
Kwn Culbertson

will do. Used BLO on several projects and it pop out the grain on several woods.

7/13/15       #10: Best technique for mantle piece ...
rich c.

I'm no fan of BLO. It's been my experience that after longer periods of time, it's just way too dark from the oxidation. Looks fine for the first few years, but 7-10 years out, way too dark. Maybe I just used the wrong brand.

7/13/15       #11: Best technique for mantle piece ...
Jim

Clear walnut becomes lighter over time, so blo might be just the thing.........

7/13/15       #12: Best technique for mantle piece ...
RobertJ

How much direct sunlight does the mantle receive during the day. Extreme amounts will turn the walnut yellow green in about 4 years time. I have walnut floors that are exposed to sunlight....trust me, they turn color! And not a pretty color!

7/13/15       #13: Best technique for mantle piece ...
JeffA

You ever wonder why the old timers stained wood dark like cherry and walnut? Maybe they got tired of people complaining about the color change and made it dark so you wouldn't notice. Just a thought.

7/13/15       #14: Best technique for mantle piece ...
Bob 'Boardman' Borders Member

I like a diluted solution of orange shellac

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