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Established Member
4 Jan 2005
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Uithoorn, The Netherlands
Hi all,

I know there is a specific thread for this topic but I think my question would be better placed here as it relates to turning? anyway:

As a newbie I'm just beginning to get my head around the whole "finishing" aspect of my new hobby. I'm looking for advice on wax and polish for turning work, which leaves the piece uncoloured but with a high gloss. I'm really into bowls right now so would like to hear replies biased toward finishing said.

I have loads of the "hard blocks" which give a great colour but the finish is not as glossy as I would like it on some pieces and deteriorates if the work is handled. I also have "Friction Polish" from chestnut which is better but often not good enough. I would like to get a "deep" finish if you know what I mean?

Any ideas oh great Oracles of the digital super highway?


I'm happy with the finish I get from:

final sanding with 1200 wet'n'dry (dry)... allow it to clog slightly and it will burnish the wood... at this point any tool marks that show when you apply the polish will show. If you need to abrade specific areas try to do so with the grain

When u r happy with the surface apply 50/50 dilute cellulose sanding sealer, wipe off excess (lathe NOT running!). Using kitchen tissue paper lightly polish the surface with the lathe running... take care that you get maintain an even spread. This dries off the polish... no need to wait 15 mins!

lightly de-nib with Chestnut's ultra fine nyweb ... use a piece of it to apply Chestnut's woodax 22 (lathe stationary)

Burnish to the desired shine with tissue paper with the lathe running.

You could also apply Chestnut's wax stick for a 'brassier' shine... a quick light application is best; too much and you'll end up with ridges of wax. If this happens simply use woodwax on nyweb to flat each area individually.

A deep shine is best when made up of minute layers... anyone with a services background will tell you that it works on boots... bull :p
(not a comment :p :p )

Let us know how you get on...

Terry Smart

Chestnut Products
8 Jun 2004
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Hi Folks

I missed this posting as I don't often look at this thread, I tend to hover around the Finishing section.

Good advice from Graham on the products, although I'm not a huge fan of habitually thinning the Sanding Sealer 50/50 but I won't go into that one here!

Another suggestion to get a very high gloss finish with a lot of depth: (I'll keep it fairly short!)

After the usual preparation, apply a coat of Cellulose Sanding Sealer. Once it is dry lightly sand back, then apply a coat of Melamine Lacquer. This is slightly more difficult on larger areas but shouldn't present too many problems.
Once this had dried (usually less than a minute) apply Burnishing Cream with the lathe running; this will smooth the Melamine and give it a slight sheen.
Now apply Friction Polish as normal; this will give both depth and gloss to the surface.
Then, to really finish it off, use the Burnishing Cream again for a really high gloss finish!

It sounds a lot of processes but should only take a few minutes from start to finish (no pun intended!).

Hope this helps!


Established Member
26 Feb 2003
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Herefordshire, UK.
Just to add my two pen'orth, I am a devotee of the Burnishing Cream. I find it helps a lot towards that superb finish we all strive for - and sometimes even I achieve it! :lol:




Established Member
13 Jan 2004
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northern ireland
have you tried teak oil - a few coats will bring up a very nice shine- straight on to the bowl/ which gives a good hard surface which will not fade like waxes. it is best appreciated on larger bowls where lathes speed is not so high to get a good wax / friction polish to melt and on irregular shapes where indents / bark / holes cannot be finished with a 'turning' action.

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