LJ Challenge: FREE Drawing (Deadline March 13, 2014)

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Blog entry by Cricket posted 03-03-2014 04:33 PM 4011 reads 0 times favorited 41 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hendrik Varju is a well known furniture designer/craftsman who operates “Passion for Wood” near Toronto, Canada. He also offers woodworking courses and seminars and has been widely published in woodworking magazines in Canada, the U.S., the U.K. and Australia. In 2007, Hendrik started producing DVD courses and he has offered to provide some of them as prizes in Lumberjocks contests. You can see the full list of all of Hendrik’s DVD courses here: .

This week, the prize is Hendrik’s sixth DVD course called “Hand Finishing and Rubbing Out”. It is almost 10 hours long and focuses on a wide variety of finishes and how to apply them by hand. It also covers hand rubbing techniques to greatly improve an imperfect finish without needing to recoat. Plus there is a long and detailed bonus section on “The Perfect Polyurethane Finish”, as well as a real-time project finishing demonstration. You can read more about this 5-DVD set here: It is valued at Cdn. $94.95 + taxes and shipping.

To enter to win this contest, just post a comment giving your answer to this question: “In your opinion, what is the greatest challenge you face when applying finishes by hand using brushes and rags instead of spray equipment?” Post a comment before March 13, 2014 and Hendrik will choose his favourite answer. Then we’ll let you know how to claim your prize. Hendrik will ship it directly to your home at no cost to you.

-- Community Manager

41 comments so far

View ToddinNH's profile


63 posts in 3801 days

#1 posted 03-03-2014 04:38 PM

I think my greatest challenge is getting a smooth finish at the “end” of a piece where the surface changes directions. For example, nice even brush stroke along a flat surface until I get to the end of the piece where the edge is. Seems difficult to start and end without getting either too little or too much finish.

-- Todd, the Tool Man -

View Ripthorn's profile


1459 posts in 4476 days

#2 posted 03-03-2014 04:42 PM

My greatest challenge is getting a smooth and even flow out over the surface of the piece. There always seems to be some sort of brush marks or other surface irregularities in the film. My sprayer makes it a non-issue, but limits what finishes I can and can’t use.

-- Brian T. - Exact science is not an exact science

View joeyinsouthaustin's profile


1294 posts in 3563 days

#3 posted 03-03-2014 04:42 PM


-- Who is John Galt?

View jumbojack's profile


1691 posts in 4115 days

#4 posted 03-03-2014 04:46 PM

my own stupidity mostly. I am an overbrusher. I know I should not ‘go back over’, but just cant seem to help myself. Like Todd the corners/edges are especially problematic. They either appear to be wanting or a puddle occurs; the adjacent edge also gets a puddle or an actual drip.

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

View brianjenkins's profile


4 posts in 3049 days

#5 posted 03-03-2014 04:50 PM

The hardest part for me is the technique for applying different finishes. I’ve always leaned on my own, and its something I’ve learned to struggle with. I find myself resanding because I want it to look right. After all I’ve spent plenty of time on what’s beneath the finish.

I don’t have an HVLP setup because I don’t have the space to do it.

View TampaMark's profile


38 posts in 3442 days

#6 posted 03-03-2014 04:59 PM

My biggest challenge is lack of knowledge on applying finishes. With so many options available, I find that I suffer from paralysis by analysis. I end up choosing what I think is the simplest option, only to be disappointed with the results. Five years ago I said my biggest woodworking challenge was finishing. Unfortunately, I would say exactly the same thing today.

-- -- Mark (maker of high-grade kindling)

View bondogaposis's profile (online now)


6193 posts in 3842 days

#7 posted 03-03-2014 05:13 PM

My biggest challenge is getting a high build durable finish for table tops, especially on porous woods such as oak.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View BillyD3152's profile


112 posts in 3370 days

#8 posted 03-03-2014 05:28 PM

My biggest challenge is that start out thinking my finish is going to be lousy looking.

-- Billy Long Island, NY

View Scroller47's profile


26 posts in 3716 days

#9 posted 03-03-2014 05:30 PM

My biggest problem is the confidence to get it right as well as lack of patience.

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

5369 posts in 5451 days

#10 posted 03-03-2014 05:39 PM

It took me years to realize that my project’s quality would be judged by the finish regardless of the intricacies of the construction. People judge by feel rather than eye.
My choice to spend the appropriate/needed time to achieve the great finish, whether wiped, sprayed, brushed, etc., was a learned experience, and required my study of both the project and the finish medium.
I now choose a wiped and rubbed finish on most of my projects because they allow me to view the “growth” of the finished surface as I proceed.

-- [email protected]

View lumberdustjohn's profile


1263 posts in 4657 days

#11 posted 03-03-2014 05:50 PM

Finishing is an art that I know little about.
I build, sand and send it to be professionally spray finished.
Would like to be able to do it myself. Afraid I mess something up and could ruin a relationship with a buyer.

-- Safety first because someone needs you.

View BinghamtonEd's profile


2298 posts in 3860 days

#12 posted 03-03-2014 05:56 PM

My biggest problem/unknown when applying a finish by hand is how heavy to apply the finish. I stick to wiping on Arm-R-Seal because to me it seems idiot-proof. I’ve had issues in the past with some polys where it seemed like it was going to take me 20 coats to build a finish, or the first coat was so thick it started sowing problems as it dried.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View Heavy's profile


118 posts in 4079 days

#13 posted 03-03-2014 06:01 PM

No challenge. Just listening to some good music and enjoying.

View Alongiron's profile


654 posts in 4184 days

#14 posted 03-03-2014 06:08 PM

My problem is a consistent who’s finishing that I know will last and last

-- Measure twice and cut once.....sneak up on it! Steve Lien

View BTimmons's profile


2303 posts in 3976 days

#15 posted 03-03-2014 06:50 PM

My biggest challenge is to trust the process, and trying not to over think things. Adopting more of a zen awareness of the work itself without fixating on the result so much that I ignore what’s actually in front of me.

-- Brian Timmons -

showing 1 through 15 of 41 comments

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