For Satin Finish, How many Coats of Tru-Oil would.......?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by dregsfan, Mar 16, 2018.

  1. dregsfan

    dregsfan *Spay And Neuter* Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2006
    For a maple neck (rw fingerboard) and a alder body, how many coats would you apply when doing a satin finish?
    For some unknowing reason, I seem to be thinking the fewer the better. Seems like it could get redundant quickly. I really allow a good amount of time to dry between coats, and we run a dehumidifier in the house due to noisy/creeky wooden floors. The stuff seems to get pretty hard, if that's the right word.

    Any thoughts?
  2. 1 coat.

    But seriously. I'd go three or four. Even if you're leaving it pretty dull, you want it to seal and grain fill properly.
    1. They suggest putting heaps on the first time, letting it dry a little then wiping the remainder off.
    2. Then you sand in the next coat with 400 or 600 grit paper. Sanding in circles, then rubbing the slurry sideways into the grain.
    3. Third coat you could just rub some on, then rub/polish it off.

    Course I tend to go a little crazy and just keep adding more and more coats, coz it looks better and better. It's also uber easy and not messy. I've done 12 coats on the last thing. More than that on other basses.
  3. Kikegg


    Mar 3, 2011
    Madrid, Spain
    As reverndrally said no more than 4 coats.Here's how I did mine with cotton t-shirt rags. An unfinished AllParts all maple neck.

    I didn't sand it as it came perfectly sanded. I bet 600 grit at least. If not sand it.
    Clean it with some kind of alcohol (isopropyl in my case) to get any grease off.
    Apply Tru-Oil to the rag and spread it from top to botton (or viceversa) following the grain.
    Let dry (12 hours is great) and repeat until you like the finish.

    Hope this will help


    IMG_20180219_201912.jpg IMG_20180219_201923.jpg
  4. dregsfan

    dregsfan *Spay And Neuter* Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2006
    I stopped at 4 coats on the neck and it turned out great. Maple is so closed pored it just went on so easy, and 4 coats seemed about right to me.
    I've got 4 coats on the alder body, may do another. I'll decide after I knock the shine down with the 0000 steel wool.
    Birchwood Casey's site recommends 4-5 coats, and I figure a gun stock must face tougher elements than my bass will.

    Y'all's input was helpful.
    Thanks guys.
  5. The good thing is, if you change your mind, it's easy to add more.:D
  6. C_Becker


    Mar 30, 2017
    I did about a dozen on my LP Studio last year, but thats a mahogany neck.
    For a maple neck, I'd go with half of that.

    I did VERY thin coats, applying just a tiny amount and rubbing it in with my fingers.
    24h waiting time before the next coat, then 3-4 days after the last coat, I rubbed down the neck with very fine (000 or 0000) steel wool.
    2tonic likes this.
  7. dregsfan

    dregsfan *Spay And Neuter* Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2006
    Yeah, mahogany's a different situation all together, I'd assume.

    Thanks guys.

    (Hey Matt, nice avatar pic.)

Share This Page