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best finish for figured walnut

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by godoze, Jul 8, 2004.

  1. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    I really want the figure to pop on this. what is the best finish to use ?
  2. JP Basses

    JP Basses

    Mar 22, 2002
    Paris FRANCE
  3. FBB Custom

    FBB Custom TalkBass Pro Commercial User

    Jan 26, 2002
    Owner: FBB Bass Works
    Or lacquer. ;)

    Either one is going to get the figure to pop out.
  4. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    10w30 or 10w40 ?
  5. neither

    try baby - fresh ones!

    :eek: :D
  6. Seriously, you can do the oil (Tru-0il for me) and work it until you've got what you want then let it sit until you either figure the oil is perfect OR it doesn't offer the protection needed. Then you can clear coat with lacquer over the oil. It's done all the time.

    An idea that works well though is to "warm up" the walnut's color a little with some shellac. A couple of thinned rubbed coats before oiling will do the job. Walnut can be a little grey - the shellac will bring out the reds, yellows and browns.
  7. FBB Custom

    FBB Custom TalkBass Pro Commercial User

    Jan 26, 2002
    Owner: FBB Bass Works
    Many lacquers will not adhere properly to oil. If you shoot lacquer, the wood should be raw. Seems like some people are using oil-based polyurethane as Hambone has suggested - sprayed or wiped over a few coats of oil.

    On a related note, lacquer really does bring out the figure by giving the wood the wet look just as well as oil. It's a matter of which feel you like better, how much work you want to make for yourself, and whether or not you have the facility to spray.
  8. McHack


    Jul 29, 2003
    Central Ohio!