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Rubbing Out a Shellac Finish for a Semi-gloss or Satin Look
Sinatra  [Member]
I have read up on rubbing out a shellac finish to obtain either a semi-gloss or satin finish, but I sure could use some help. I know that it's important to wait for the shellac to dry/cure before rubbing out the finish. There are several techniques and utensils used for this process. Some guys say to flood the surface with mineral spirits and then use "0000" steel wool. Some do this but use high grit (600+) sand paper and then wet sand the shellac. I've seen some guys use soapy water as a lubricant and then use the high grit SP to wet sand it. The guy at Woodcraft said that I should just use wax as a lube and then rub it out with "0000" steel wool.



My questions are as follows:


* How long do you wait for the shellac to cure before starting the rubbing out process?

* How do you go about it for either a semi-gloss or satin appearance?

* After the finish has been dulled, what's the best way to polish/burnish the shellac to reach the desired finish?

Thanks guys!

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ColonelHurtz  [Team Member]
What you really want is "rotten stone".

http://www.woodfinishsupply.com/GuideToFrenchPolishing.pdf
Sinatra  [Member]
Originally Posted By ColonelHurtz:
What you really want is "rotten stone".

http://www.woodfinishsupply.com/GuideToFrenchPolishing.pdf


Thanks!
Dferg10  [Member]
I have heard to avoid steel wool at that phase because the tiny metal particles can get embedded and rust later, causing discoloration. With that said, I have seen steel wool used and have never seen it happen, so i do not know if it is worth worrying about.
DesignatedMarksman  [Team Member]
I used rottenstone in Danish Oil to refinish my (1959 Greek re-arsenal, ergo historically worthless) Garand.

I sanded from 200 grit down to 1500 grit to get the dents and dings mostly out. I then went over the whole thing with rottenstone and Danish Oil to a satin finish. My stock and front handguard are walnut, and the upper handguard is beech. So far, the finish has been robust on the walnut, but it bleeds from the beech when it gets hot. I probably should have used a grain filler on the beech before the danish oil.
Sinatra  [Member]
Originally Posted By Dferg10:
I have heard to avoid steel wool at that phase because the tiny metal particles can get embedded and rust later, causing discoloration. With that said, I have seen steel wool used and have never seen it happen, so i do not know if it is worth worrying about.


Thanks.
Sinatra  [Member]
Originally Posted By DesignatedMarksman:
I used rottenstone in Danish Oil to refinish my (1959 Greek re-arsenal, ergo historically worthless) Garand.

I sanded from 200 grit down to 1500 grit to get the dents and dings mostly out. I then went over the whole thing with rottenstone and Danish Oil to a satin finish. My stock and front handguard are walnut, and the upper handguard is beech. So far, the finish has been robust on the walnut, but it bleeds from the beech when it gets hot. I probably should have used a grain filler on the beech before the danish oil.


Thanks for the info. Do you have any pics of your rifle?
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