oil finish or what? #1: What finish should i use on teak bench?

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Blog entry by Dave posted 01-30-2012 04:39 AM 1792 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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I have just completed a bench from ipe that will go in my shower but I have no idea what to use as a finish. I was thinking about an oil finish because I don’t want a finish that will peel and flake off like what you see on sailboats team will. Any comments or

past experience with ipe would be appreciated.

4 comments so far

View stefang's profile


17040 posts in 4576 days

#1 posted 01-30-2012 06:42 PM

I would think that a good quality marine varnish would be best. Remember that the finish on boats probably deteriorates a lot more because of the sun than any other cause. It seems to me that oils (Danish or otherwise) would transfer when you sit on the bench. Others might have more relevant knowledge or experience, but that’s my take on it.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Benighted's profile


57 posts in 4103 days

#2 posted 01-31-2012 02:52 AM

Some good old BLO should do nicely, had a solid wood shelving in my bathroom with a PU finish that started flaking after a year or so, and when it starts it goes fast as the moisture stays in the cracks and keep working on it from the inside of the finish. So I planed of the finish of and layered on the BLO letting it cure fully between coats, the first coats should be really rich and flood the surface so the wood is nicely impregnated by the oil while after a couple of coats you add less and less of it and work it in to the wood, everything is aimed at filling the pores with the oil which when it cures swells and really is a part of the wood.

The surface created has stood the use for 7years now and show no signs of failing, watersplashes 2-3 times a day, humid room and so on, i have a few times added a thin new coat of oil when the water repellent surface started to disappear and the water didn’t bead as much as before, but as a quite thick layer of the wood is impregnated it will hold for quite some time. If you like you can ad a layer of wax on top of that surface and polish it up real nice and get an additional layer of protection.

P.S. The curing time of the first coats of BLO may be a week or more, so it does take it’s time, but I think it’s worth it, no other surfacing gives the real warm pure feel of wood, yet protecting it really good D.S.

-- Jani, a Neanderthal woodworker in Sweden.

View Dave's profile


38 posts in 4257 days

#3 posted 01-31-2012 04:32 AM

Thanks for the insight and your past experience Benighted. I really think the oil is a good finish. I never thought about wax. I might try it on some scrap. I will let you know how it turns out and I will post it in my projects.

View stefang's profile


17040 posts in 4576 days

#4 posted 01-31-2012 02:22 PM

That sounds right Dave. I somehow got the idea that this bench was going to be used in the shower where it would be getting wet all the time. After looking again I see it will just be used in the room.

Oil seems a good choice. Personally I think I would use a Danish type oil which has resins in it to protect from moisture, gives a nice finish and is easily renewable like any other oil finish and just because it’s easier and faster to get the same results with less work. The BLO will also work well here, but it takes a lot longer and may have a lingering smell.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

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