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Pure Tung Oil on Walnut with Chalky Spots

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Forum topic by DBordello posted 12-12-2019 02:00 AM 311 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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DBordello

135 posts in 1832 days


12-12-2019 02:00 AM

Topic tags/keywords: tung oil wanut

For my first born child, I decided to build a crib. He arrived on the scene just as construction was wrapping up. Therefore, as he lived in the crib sans-finish for a few years.

Now that the second is almost here, it is probably time to finish the project.

The crib was made of walnut which is beautiful. I landed on using Pure Tung Oil finish. I resanded the entire surface with 220 grit, and wiped it clean with mineral spirits. I diluted the tung oil 1:1 with mineral spirits, and applied with a rag, and wiped away the excess.

At first, the results were great. However, there are some areas that now have a “chalky” finish:

My plan had been to apply a second & third coat using 600 grit sand paper. However, now my multi-year project of love is on the ropes.

How would you proceed to save the work? ANY advice is appreciated.


4 replies so far

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CaptainKlutz

2227 posts in 2100 days


#1 posted 12-12-2019 10:32 AM

Excess tung oil dries off white. Same thing happens if you dry some in a dish or cup.

Likely explanation is excess oil soaked into those areas, was not removed as it seeped out and then dried; so you see white residue.

Buff the areas with white scuff pad (or 0000 steel wool) and alcohol, and wipe any residue off. Let dry 24hrs. Wipe down with MS, looking for any darker/wetter areas that still exist. These areas will soak up extra oil. Need to watch them for the next coat.
Apply 2nd coat of tung oil and then wipe off excess.
Keep checking for excess oil for 1st 48 hours and remove any excess that weeps out to avoid residue repeat.

Another possibility is a water soluble contaminate was in the wood? Mineral spirits won’t dissolve sugar/salt well. But it will float sugar/salt water to top, which dries and leaves residue. An alcohol clean up with remove most residue that petroleum solvent like MS can’t. So the same repair method would be used.

-- I'm an engineer not a woodworker, but I can randomly find useful tools and furniture inside a pile of lumber!

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DBordello

135 posts in 1832 days


#2 posted 12-12-2019 03:29 PM

CaptainKlutz,

I love the succinct analysis, and detailed solution. Thank you very much.

I will give your remedy a shot this weekend and report back.

Thank you again!

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DBordello

135 posts in 1832 days


#3 posted 12-15-2019 06:09 PM

Perhaps a stupid question, but I assume Denatured Alcohol?

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CaptainKlutz

2227 posts in 2100 days


#4 posted 12-16-2019 02:49 AM


Perhaps a stupid question, but I assume Denatured Alcohol?
- DBordello

Yes.

-- I'm an engineer not a woodworker, but I can randomly find useful tools and furniture inside a pile of lumber!

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