German beech - best waterproof finish to use to maintain the beauty of the natural wood?

UKworkshop.co.uk

Help Support UKworkshop.co.uk:

discombobulated

New member
Joined
24 Jun 2021
Messages
3
Reaction score
0
Location
uk
We have used beech in our bathroom and used WoodDoc Antique Wax to protect it. Unfortunately, although it looked beautiful, it did nothing to protect the surface from water splashes. We stripped the wax finish using white spirits as recommended and sanded the surface down. After some research and feedback from a company that supplies Osmo oil based finishes, we ordered the Osmo 4006 wood protector and the 1101 extra thin finish coat which is supposed to protect against water damage.

We were advised to do a test run, which we did on a pair of beech side tables which had also previously been treated with antique wax. After removing the wax and sanding the surface, we applied the Osmo wood protector. The result was terrible blotching which had not been apparent after waxing. Applying the finish coat did nothing to remedy the mottled, blotchy appearance.

Since then, further research has revealed that German beech is also prone to blotching with the use of tung oil.

What do finish do you recommend that will allow us to maintain the beauty of the natural wood and provide a waterproof barrier against water splashes?
 

JobandKnock

Amateur curmudgeon
Joined
14 Apr 2021
Messages
801
Reaction score
457
Location
Lancashire
Good luck with beech in a humid environment. Beech is not a durable timber and can start to go black and decay when subjected regularly to humidity, which is why in traditional work you never see it used on exterior joinery despite its' relative cheapness.

I replaced all the beech trimmings in a modern council sports centre a few years back which had discoloured - the trimmings architraves, skirtings, window frames in the sauna changing rooms in particular were completely black after under 10 years. The architect specified beech trimmings again - so I know someone will be doing another site visit in 6 years or so (but it won't be me). Not all modern architectural ideas are good ones
 
Last edited:

discombobulated

New member
Joined
24 Jun 2021
Messages
3
Reaction score
0
Location
uk
Epoxy as used by boat builders.

Cheers James

Hi James, Is it possible to be more specific? What epoxy product would you recommend? As mentioned we are looking for something that will not cause blotching. Have you successfully used a specific epoxy on beech before? Thanks.
 

discombobulated

New member
Joined
24 Jun 2021
Messages
3
Reaction score
0
Location
uk
Good luck with beech in a humid environment. Beech is not a durable timber and can start to go black and decay when subjected regularly to humidity, which is why in traditional work you never see it used on exterior joinery despite its' relative cheapness.

I replaced all the beech trimmings in a modern council sports centre a few years back which had discoloured - the trimmings architraves, skirtings, window frames in the sauna changing rooms in particular were completely black after under 10 years. The architect specified beech trimmings again - so I know someone will be doing another site visit in 6 years or so (but it won't be me). Not all modern architectural ideas are good ones


Unfortunately, we are stuck with beech and are looking for some guidance on what product would best preserve the wood without giving a botchy, uneven finish. Any advice on that score would be most welcome. Thanks.
 

OldWood

Established Member
Joined
1 Mar 2005
Messages
1,073
Reaction score
75
Location
Edinburgh
Again I am with JobandKnock on this. I imagine 'german' beech is much like the UK variety, and you just need to see how quickly moulds get into it ('spalted' beech) after felling.

It's never a pleasant thing to have to do but my feeling to the OP is to get 'unstuck' with this wood and seek something more appropriate.
Rob
 

thetyreman

Established Member
Joined
4 Mar 2016
Messages
3,724
Reaction score
816
Location
North West
a sanding sealer like 1/2lb cut de-waxed shellac applied before you put on tung oil or osmo will prevent most of the blotching, but you would have to sand right back to the bare wood again. You'll need an extremely water resistant finish for a bathroom, the choice of using beech is not a good one, it will not last well no matter what finish you put on it.
 

Cabinetman

Established Member
Joined
5 Jan 2017
Messages
2,704
Reaction score
1,524
Location
lincolnshire Wolds
a sanding sealer like 1/2lb cut de-waxed shellac applied before you put on tung oil or osmo will prevent most of the blotching, but you would have to sand right back to the bare wood again. You'll need an extremely water resistant finish for a bathroom, the choice of using beech is not a good one, it will not last well no matter what finish you put on it.
Agree about the sanding sealer, works a treat on my Beech bench, I think it’s a good working surface as well, obviously my bench isn’t in a damp atmosphere though lol. Ian
 
Top