I give you the benefit of my wisdom (truthfully, my ability to copy and paste….):
A tack cloth is one of the best ways to remove dust and grit before applying a finish, to make one soak a cheese cloth in water, wring out the water, soak it in turpentine, wring it out again, drip enough clear varnish on the cheesecloth to make it evenly gummy throughout. Store it in a jar with a lid to keep it from drying out.
That sounds easy enough. I was thinking it would be something that had to be used right away, being able to store and use it when needed is gonna be a big plus. Thanks Beener. Does Lowes or h-depot sell turpintine?
The term paint thinner is generic. Generally, it is mineral spirits and/or other petroleum distillates. Read the label.
A cloth dampened with water can also be used as a tack cloth. As long as you let the wood completely dry before applying a solvent and/or oil based finish. A waterborne finish can be applied before the surface is completely dry.
Note: Water on a raw wood surface may raise the grain and that's a good thing to do before final sanding.
Why is raising the grain a good thing? I am finishing a workbench and did wipe it down with one of the "Green" white colored solvents. (Trying to keep the vapors down in the winter shop.) I thought it was a bad thing when the grain raised and was unbelievably ruff. I sanded again and wiped down with mineral spirits before the first coat. If you just wipe with mineral spirits aren't you then skipping the grain raising?
That's what I was asking just in an effort to better understand the finishing process. Even though in my case it is just a work bench. Would those with more experience intentionally do a tack wipe that would raise the grain on a fine piece as part of a normal process to improve penetration?
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