Oak razor scales, for water resistance and grain pop?

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Forum topic by AESamuel posted 11-19-2017 07:17 PM 481 views 0 times favorited 1 reply Add to Favorites Watch
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105 posts in 2068 days

11-19-2017 07:17 PM

Hey there!

I’ve just finished shaping some brown oak razor scales and am now musing over what finish to apply. I’ve no experience with finishing razor scales but I would think physical durability is less of a concern but sonething to bring water resistance, easy to clean soap residue off and really make the grain pop.

My current thoughts are two coats of Danish oil then maybe a couple of light coats of wiping varnish. Perhaps buffed out with some paste wax and 0000 steel wool.

What do you guys reckon? Maybe a little overkill with the Danish oil AND wiping varnish? One or the other? Any advice from those more experienced with razor scales would be very appreciated!

Thanks, Asa

1 reply so far

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1368 posts in 1766 days

#1 posted 11-24-2017 02:41 PM


I have not made razor scales nor am I a finishing expert but I have finished some projects which I wanted to protect from the effects of water using polyurethane and urethane.

Multiple coats of polyurethane finish offer good protection against water penetration. I doubt that Danish oil would offer much additional protection, but may be part of the finishing schedule for the sake of appearance. Since Danish oil adds extra work and waiting time for the Danish oil to cure, I would only use Danish oil under the polyurethane only for the sake of appearance.

The interior of the housing into which the razor blade folds should be well protected. It seems to me that water will find its way into this pocket and will likely lay there to air dry and/or be absorbed by the wood. If left unfinished and the razor scales later fail, it could be due to the unprotected interior blade housing.

If the razor scales are assembled and cannot come apart, effectively applying finish (wipe-on or brush-on) inside the blade pocket will be very difficult. A spray finish could be a better choice. I have not used lacquer, but a spray lacquer might be an alternative choice for top coating. It is available in aerosol cans. I think lacquer, being a film finish, also offer a measure of waterproofing and will dry much faster than polyurethane.

Burnishing the surface with 0000 steel wool might enhance the shine and paste wax could offer additional protection, but these steps may be unnecessary if a gloss polyurethane or lacquer is used.

Before finishing the razor scales, it is probably worthwhile to perfect your finishing schedule on some scrap from the same wood that is prepared for finish as the razor scales. This would avoid surprises and increase the chances that the finished project will have the appearance you are after.

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