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Woodturning Finishes from Germany
- and one for the carvers too

A workpiece in Chilean Laurel burr finished with two coats of Steinert Drechsleroel, simply burnished on the latheHaving long been an aficionado of oil finishes, both as a complete finish "out of the can" and as a basis for a brightly buffed finish, I am always keen to try new options - though not easily convinced to change my "favoured brew". For the Drechsleroel from Steinert I am happy to make an exception.

This oil finishes to an excellent satin sheen after just three coats.  It is durable and, being colourless, will not alter the colour of the underlying timber. It will certainly enrich the colours present in the timber but it will not alter or mask them. It dries quickly and goes on easily with a safety cloth or - my preferred method for coats #2 and beyond - with a piece of Nyweb. Unlike many oils it also has a pleasant odour and does not leave your hand feeling unduly sticky and unpleasant after use. It is made completely from natural ingredients and meets the German DIN EN71 standard for toy safety. I have adopted this one as my finish of choice.

Steinert also offer an oil finish of a similar type developed specifically for woodcarvings. The idea of this oil is to keep the wood looking attractive as it progressively metamorphoses into the truly weathered, silvered timber that we all admire so much in outdoor locations. These characteristics also make it an excellent choice for the preservation of garden furniture. Like its stable-mate, above, this oil is also made wholly from natural ingredients and meets the toy safety standard. At last - one for the carvers! About time too! (By the way, the name - "Drachenoel" translates as Dragon Oil, so if Puff the Magic Dragon is one of your friends, then this may work to stop his joints creaking or even to prolong his life.)

 
 

D & M, also from Germany, provide a range of finishing products that address areas of finishing perhaps not well covered by other products.

Foremost is an excellent polymeric Pen Finish which is easy to apply, involves no magic potions, satanic rites or other antics but is simply wiped on to the rotating wooden pen components to create a lustrous, hard-wearing finish in seconds. The dry finish (max 10 minutes drying time) resists sweat, scratching, impact and abrasion and is both water- and UV-resistant. Being crystal-clear it will not alter the colour of the underlying timber. A more glossy finish can be achieved by building multiple coats if required.

 

Most turners have, from time to time, tried to turn timber which is "past its best", usually because there is some figuring - usually spalting - in the timber that is "just too good to miss". Equally most of us have discovered what a disappointment such escapades can turn out to be. D & M produce a possible solution - Wood Hardener - which soaks into the timber, dries and leaves a firmer surface which cuts more cleanly than rotted, punky old timber! It is also a sanding sealer, being spirit-based, and can be used as such. The hardener is applied liberally to the timber using a paintbrush and allowed to dry for ten to twenty minutes, dependent upon absorbency of the timber, after which it can be cut as normal - with sharp tools - or sanded.

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The Natural Oil Finish created by D & M can be used on woodturnings, natural wood furniture, worktops and floors. The oil comprises all natural ingredients (including nut oils) and is free of harmful volatile solvents. It meets the DIN EN71 Pt 3 standard for toy safety too. The resulting finish after building two or three coats, each 24 hours apart, is a pleasing silky matt to satin gloss with a pleasant odour. The oil is clear so that it enhances, and does not mask or discolour, the underlying timber.

 

*NB: Prices quoted in pounds sterling. 
Value Added Tax will be added to invoices to EU residents unless
a valid VAT registration number is quoted when ordering.

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1997-2011 P. Hemsley.  The information on this website is the copyright property of Peter Hemsley & ToolPost Ltd.  Coeur du Bois and The ToolPost are trading styles of Peter Hemsley.  Whilst reasonable efforts are made to ensure the accuracy of information presented, no liability can be accepted for errors in this information nor for contingencies arising therefrom.  If you are inexperienced in any aspect of woodworking, we would strongly counsel that you take a course of formal instruction before commencing to practice