Friday, October 31, 2008

How to buy finishing supplies for wood

High-quality wood finishing supplies take the pain out of staining and finishing. I have written a few articles about how to sand, stain, and finish, wood, but I have not written any articles about the actual tools used to help achieve these results. Here are the tools and accessories to purchase which will greatly speed up the job and increase the quality of your finishing work.

Buy 80-120 grit sandpaper for sanding and shaping raw wood. Use 240-280-400 grit sandpaper, sponges and pads for sanding between clear coats. I recommend that you purchase both dry and wet/dry sandpaper in these grits.

Buy two 2-1/2-in. china-bristle brushes (natural bristles). Use them for staining, dry brushing and applying the clear finishes. If you take care of it and clean it well using mineral spirits, a top-quality brush will a long time. A cheap brush is more likely to leave brush marks and bristles in the finish.

Buy a box of 100-percent cotton painter’ s rags. Don’t use old bed sheets or clothes that contain synthetic fibers. They may leave behind dyes and won’t absorb stain nearly as well.

Buy a box of disposable latex gloves will protect your hands from solvents and stain. You want the disposable kind because they get pretty nasty, and you can get rid of them after a project is done, or between coats.

Buy a 1-gallon can of Mineral Spirits to clean brushes and to thin stain if needed. This can be found in the paint department of your home service center.

Get a few tack cloths to help clean up your finish work. Find tack cloths in the paint department of your local home service center. Use them to eliminate the last specks of dust after you sand between coats.

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