Reply by mpounders

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Posted on Sealing Carvings w/ Wipe-on Poly vs Boiled Linseed Oil

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939 posts in 3435 days

#1 posted 12-17-2018 09:01 PM

I know a lot of carvers who apply BLO before painting their carvings, I believe primarily to prevent blotchiness on exposed end grain. Then they paint over it with thinned acrylic paints. After the paint drys, many will apply BLO again, sometimes followed by spray lacquer after it dries. They may then apply an “antique” solution followed by another coat of lacquer. I know some carvers that will substitute a sanding sealer for that first coat of BLO. There are many methods used for finishing carvings that wouldn’t necessarily be applied to the flat surfaces of a piece of furniture. My personal method is to paint directly on the bare wood with thinned acrylics and then applying satin polyurethane (oil based) to the entire carving with a brush when it is completed. I then blot this off with a paper towel to give a matte finish to the carving that is protective and easy to maintain. Plus it dries a lot quicker than BLO. Basswood is a little different in how it takes stains and finishes and although it may not sound like it works, the process described is used by many carvers.

-- Mike P., Arkansas,

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