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Any problems finishing in unheated basement?

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  • Any problems finishing in unheated basement?

    I don't have heat in my basement but don't go down to scroll unless it's over 45 degrees F down there. With the cost of electricity and propane, heating is not an option nor is brining the work upstairs. So far, I've done a lot of scrolling but no finishing. My question is, what's been your success at finishing and / or spaying adhesive at cooler temps such as 45-55 degree Fahrenheit?


  • #2
    If I feel it's not warm enough to finich. I wait until the time is right. Just keep scrolling and then 'finish' all the pieces at the same time.


    • #3
      Grizz is right. Both the wood and the finishing material should be much higher than that for finishing. I always turn my thermostat in my shop around 75 degrees and leave it there for a few hours for both the wood and the containers of finish to reach that temperature. Warm wood and warm finishing products are one of the secrets of successful finishing.
      If you are just using an oil finish you can get away with lower temperarures but even then the drying process will be much longer than you will be happy with

      The task ahead of us is never as great as the power behind us

      Delta P-20 Scroll Saw, 14" x 43" Craftex Wood Lathe and Jet 10" Mini Lathe .


      • #4
        Every finish I've come across has printed somewhere on the container the acceptable temperature range to use that product. The manufacturer (I would assume) knows their product best and I would follow that.

        As far as finishing upstairs goes, I'm not sure what your situation is. If odor is your concern, I have finished projects when I'm using an oil hybrid (such as Formby's Tung Oil) without a noticable odor. My wife is sensitive to finishing odors (even working in the basement is a problem with some finishes), and if I can get it past her you should be safe too. Just don't wait until you have a room full of projects and do them all at once!

        . . . because each piece will be someone's heirloom someday.
        visit sometime
        Hawk 220VS, Delta 40-570


        • #5
          harrisg....I have a similar situation in my basement. Although heated in the winter I always keep the vents closed to keep the heat upstairs. It's typically about 55 degrees down there on cold days and stain that normally dries in 24 hours has taken up to four days to cure enough to handle. I found that if I placed my portable work lamps about three feet from the pieces I need to dry, and run a small fan to create a breeze across the pieces, they dry about right. However, If you get the lamps too close it tends to separate the pigments from the oil leaving tiny spots in the stained finish. Just be very careful of open flames in the basement, such as your furnace, if you're generating a lot of combustible fumes.
          If it don't fit, don't force it....get a bigger hammer!!


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