Author Topic: Suggested finish?  (Read 1060 times)

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Offline stuckinthemud

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Suggested finish?
« on: April 19, 2019, 07:19:07 am »
Ok, so its not a warbow but I do need some expertise on medieval finishes. My gothic crossbow has bone, horn and carved antler inlays. What would you suggest as a good finish, plain bees wax, or wax and turpentine, varnish, or something else? Oh, and should I put anything at all on the bone? Thanks in advance, Andrew

Offline Hawkdancer

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Re: Suggested finish?
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2019, 10:22:42 am »
Not sure if it is "medieval, but you might try a 3:2 mix of flax oil and beeswax.  Depending on what glue you used for the inlays, it should be good.  Rub it in well.  Takes a few days to set though.  It is actually a spoon finish for working spoons, and you will need to reapply occasionally.  Do a test if you have a cutoff or scrap to see if you like it.
Hawkdancer
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Jerry

Offline stuckinthemud

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Re: Suggested finish?
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2019, 11:29:50 am »
I used gelatin glue

Offline Hawkdancer

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Re: Suggested finish?
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2019, 10:51:01 pm »
Should work!  The gelatin is basically hide glue, I think!  Truoil might work to, but I haven't used it on bows - it did not affect the brass inlay on gunstocks that I have worked.
Hawkdancer
Life is far too serious to be taken that way!
Jerry

Offline Pat B

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Re: Suggested finish?
« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2019, 08:51:05 am »
Tru-Oil does work on bows but it's not medieval. Oil with bees wax would probably be appropriate.
 FYI...an old adage about oil finishes on wood... Once a day for a week, once a week for a month, once a month for a year and once a year after that.
Make the most of all that comes and the least of all that goes!    Pat Brennan  Brevard, NC

Offline stuckinthemud

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Re: Suggested finish?
« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2019, 09:03:50 am »
Boiled linseed oil is my favourite finish but i am concerned it would yellow the antler

Offline Hawkdancer

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Re: Suggested finish?
« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2019, 09:41:02 am »
I understand straight boiled linseed oil doesn't dry completely on some woods.  Tru-Oil has some additives that promote drying.  Lin-Speed is also a good finish but I haven't tried it on a bow.  It was originally primarily used for gunstocks and guitars.
Hawkdancer
Life is far too serious to be taken that way!
Jerry

Offline stuckinthemud

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Re: Suggested finish?
« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2019, 03:36:55 pm »
I never had a problem with boiled linseed oil - 'boiled' means driers have been added- and I have used it on many types of wood but it does tint white woods, though it is absolutely stunning on dark woods with a polished wax on top - you need to let the oil finish curing before the wax is applied though.  I think perhaps I would wax the antler first to protect it from the oil, then oil the tiller, then wax the whole thing.  Any guess as to how the oil and wax would affect the bone- I only have a few small chips left and I'm not sure I have a large enough piece to make a proper test piece from.

Offline kbear

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Re: Suggested finish?
« Reply #8 on: April 27, 2019, 05:19:58 am »
Hawkdancer, I use gelatin glue for ALL my gluing. I often use it over horn for a gloss finish that requires no polishing. I also use a home-made varnish of boiled linseed (actually boiled raw oil) oil and colophony (pine resin) dissolved in gum (turps saturated) turpentine over that. It seems to remain sticky for a few weeks though since horn is not so absorbent........ but, gelatin glue is good for horn..... that's the point!

Offline Hawkdancer

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Re: Suggested finish?
« Reply #9 on: April 27, 2019, 10:19:36 pm »
Your recipe is similar to a 1:1:1 boiled linseed oil, pine tar, and turpentine varnish I learned from canoe makers, used it on my lodge poles, very effective, lasted several years before I had to reapply.
Hawkdancer
Life is far too serious to be taken that way!
Jerry

Offline Bryce

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Re: Suggested finish?
« Reply #10 on: April 28, 2019, 01:56:02 pm »
Your recipe is similar to a 1:1:1 boiled linseed oil, pine tar, and turpentine varnish I learned from canoe makers, used it on my lodge poles, very effective, lasted several years before I had to reapply.
Hawkdancer

By weight or volume?
Clatskanie, Oregon

Offline Hawkdancer

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Re: Suggested finish?
« Reply #11 on: April 28, 2019, 09:39:52 pm »
By volume, I.e. Quart:quart:quart.  Warm up the pine tar and mix in the linseed oil and turpentine.  Remember to use real turpentine.
Hawkdancer
Life is far too serious to be taken that way!
Jerry