Saturday, March 10, 2018

Headless Kit Build: Wet Sanding

During the first week of the finishing process, I have been pretty generous with oil applications. Before the oil builds up it soaks right in. So it helps to be a little aggressive (a few drops) at the start if you're going to use a coat/wait/coat approach. The downside is you get some bumps, mini dust bunnies stuck in the muck and ridges in the finish. The key to getting rid of those is wet sanding!
This involves soaking a paper towel with water, squeezing a few drops out, and then sanding out imperfections with a grit that depends on the severity of the "unsmoothedness". I use between 800 and 1500 grit. As you sand you build up a slurry of powdered oil and water. I find it works really well to get the gloves off and have my fingers in the Tru-Oil mud so I can feel the texture of the surface as I'm sanding. Wiping it off with the wet paper towel, the surface looks a bit duller than before the sanding.
After it dries, you can see the remaining "mud" stuck around the imperfections. That effect will go away with a naphtha wipe down and additional coats of oil.

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