Sanding a piece before adding the final finishing is very important. Use the correct technique or sanding system will greatly improve the look of a piece, and ease the work involved in the finishing process.
Thus far, this series has described the use of oils and varnishes for a finish that can be best described as a soft gloss. But, these finishes can leave something to be desired when we have a piece of wood with a highly figured or a complex grain pattern that is best displayed with a deep high gloss finish.
These finishing products are an attempt to get quick and easy "French type" polish on spindle turnings, weed pots, vases, and other small items. They are either shellac or lacquer based, and contain waxes and oils. They will never equal the durability of a true French Polish, and they are often not as easy to apply as advertised.
A spectacular grain “picture” calls for a spectacular finish, and a polished lacquer is the ideal choice for such a piece of wood. Lacquer has the unique ability among finishes to build a durable crystal clear film that gives depth and clarity to the wood surface, while accenting the grain and any chatoyance that is present, and having a sparkle and brilliance that no other finish can match.
I’ve been spending a whole lot of time lately writing a book on Woodturning Accessories for All American Crafts, the publishers of Woodturning Design. I discovered while working on an expansion of an earlier article on Wooden Face-plates
Sanding is the second of the three steps in the turning process - turning, sanding, and finishing. These steps are not independent. A poorly turned surface will require more time sanding, a poorly sanded surface will result in a poor final finish, and sometimes the finish and sanding are done at the same time.
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