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  • My Story

    Several people have asked over the years, "What is the hardest part?" (That is to making a piece of intarsia.) My answer is: "They are all equal." Picking the right pattern for you and your particular taste; selecting the wood according to color, grain, and hardness; attaching the pattern to the wood or however you do it; cutting out the pieces following the line closely; fitting the various parts together remembering the wood removed during cutting; shaping the pieces according to depth, shape of piece, and grain; gluing without getting the glue on the surface; making a nice backing; and finally finishing. I have re-cut many pieces that did not fit no matter what; tossed several whole finished pieces into the fire as they were hopeless; added pieces where the cuts removed so much wood an extra feather or whatever had to be added; sanded off or removed the finish as dust, brush hairs, or sloppy technique were too obvious; ad infinitum. I use brush-on semi-gloss lacquer with an occasional spraying from a can with usually three to seven coats. Occasionally I have used Krylon if I really want a flat finish. After five years and about forty or more pieces, I am still learning the hard way. I am open to your suggestions. Even though my vocabulary (#@$&#@*) has expanded, I have had fun all the way! By the way. The sources and quality of patterns is amazing, but even that depends upon your individual taste. Thanks for allowing me to toss in my 'two cents worth.'

  • #2
    HI Jim,
    My suggestion for the finish is give Bartley's Gel a try. It has a nice smooth, satin hand rubbed look. I really much prefer the finished look of it to the spray. Hang in there with us and I'm sure you'll learn lots !!


    • #3
      Hay jim I use wipe on poly by minwax easy to use drys fast.


      • #4
        Thanks for the suggestions on the wipe on gel. I have tried it, but may try again. I have the impression that it darkens with age whereas lacquer does not... as bad least. Also, it the gel seems to pile up in the crevices. Then the question becomes; gel first, or glue pieces together first with gel last. What are your opinions on the finishes darkening? Or is enough to worry about? Thanks


        • #5
          on the one intarsia i have done, i used armrseal by general finishes, on the pieces prior to gluing together. soon I will be following the intarsia stuff closely, as Im about to chop into at least 4, possibly 5 chocolate labs to do on a cherry blanket chest.I am biting off more then I can chew, but its for a good cause. Dale
          Dale w/ yella saws


          • #6
            Acrylic Wipe On Finish

            Hi Jim,

            The "Gel Wipe On Finishes" are all heavy bodied drying oils, which will amber more with each coat that you apply, and will always continue to amber.

            In some cases on darker woods the amber actually enhances these woods.

            If you want a "water clear wipe on coating," why, don't you try the Acrylic Floor Finish, you might want to apply a thin coat of shellac first to seal the wood, and then apply a few coats of the crystal clear Acrylic Floor Finishes which you can purchase in most super markets.

            I'll get you a photo posted ASAP..


            • #7
              Photo of Acrylic Floor Finish


              You can see the Acrylic Floor Finish in the right hand corner, many companies make this product, if you want a wipe on clear finish this is it.

              Good Luck

              Attached Files


              • #8
                Mac, that's really interesting. I would have never thought of using floor finish. You mentioned that one may want to apply a coat of shellac to seal before using such a product. Could you elaborate on that point a bit? What are the consequences of not applying shellac first?

                Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter. Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."


                • #9
                  Shellac as a sealer...


                  My reason for mentioning the Shellac was to first seal the wood, which shellac excels at, there are many woods that are very pourous, and without a good sealer (it could be any sealer) it will take several coats of the acrylic floor finish to build up a finish.




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