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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Im at the finishing portion of my revelator project. Ive read that Teak oil is recomended for zebrawood because it is a very oil wood. Do any of you have any other sugestions. My goal is to maintain the natural look of the wood while hardening the surface, protecting and bringing out the grain all at the same time.


Thanks for any help.
 

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whphel


revelator???? is this a DIY speaker?


Woodworking has been my hobby for the last 20 years. I've never worked with zebrawood but I have worked with other exotic species. Zebrawood is a good looking wood. I have worked mostly with oak, walnut and pine. From what I've read zebrawood is grainy and somewhat oily.


If you have a piece of scrap (i know scrap is $$$), first try a clear filler to seal the pores and smooth the surface, and then apply a few coats of a good quality tung oil. You can then follow up with soome good wax. That should give a clear smooth finish that preserves the color and grain of the wood. I have used this technique on oak before and it works well. The tung oil is not as hard a finish as a poly but on exotic species the finish choices are narrowed.


Good Luck!


Jerry
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by Spydrman
whphel


revelator???? speakers?


Woodworking has been my hobby for the last 20 years. (now I have a new one - building my HT!!) I've never worked with zebrawood but I have worked with other exotic species. Zebrawood is a good looking wood. I have worked mostly with oak, walnut and pine. From what I've read zebrawood is grainy and somewhat oily.


If you have scrap, try a clear filler and then a few coats of a good quality tung oil. You can then follow up with soome good wax. That should give a clear smooth finish that preserves the color and grain of the wood. I have used this technique on oak before and it works well. The tung oil is not as hard a finish as a poly but on exotic species the finish choices are narrowed.


Good Luck!
Yeah, North Creek Rhythm/Revelator Project (speakers).


Thanks for the advice. I do have some scrap not much, enough to test your method out though before I do the boxes. I'll keep you posted on what I ultimately do in the end as well as post some pic's. There looking VERY nice I can hardly wait to hear them in action.
 

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Yes real Tung Oil works very well on most woods, and it looks great.

You just have to make sure it's really Tung Oil that you are buying, and not just some mixture that includes some Tung Oil in it.

And it gives you the "oiled" finish that you are looking for. And if you don't wax it (I myself do not), every six months or so a 30 second wipe down with some lemon oil that is made for wood finishes, will have them looking like you just finished them again. As it restores any oil that the wood may have lost due to evaporation or anything like that.


I have a pair of Klipsch LaScalas, that I bought in unfinished birch in the late 70's. That I stained and finished them with a hand rubbed Tung Oil, just that same way. And with the once or twice a year lemon oil "wipe over" they look like new again every time. And still look and show the nice woodgrain that they have, 30 years later.


Here is a place with bit of info on what Tung Oil is, and what it does for use in wood finishing, if you click on the "Tung Oil History" icon on the left of the page.

http://www.sutherlandwelles.com


And you will note, that it becomes a waterproof and also a much harder finish, than many people think it is.


"A Polymerized Tung Oil finish is hard yet flexible, waterproof and impervious to alcohol and many food acids. Polymerized Tung oil as a penetrating oil allows wood to continue its aging process and to develop its patina. The wood's rich color and grain are enhanced by the natural ambering (coloring) of Polymerized Tung oil over time. Any sign of wear disappears when a thin "maintenance" coat of oil is rubbed in. The maintenance coats, rather than cause a build-up, actually improve the patina as they protect and preserve the wood. A floor, a piece of furniture, or any other wood object finished and maintained with Polymerized Tung Oil will never have to be stripped again. The finish will become more beautiful with time."
 

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tung oil is a good recommendation, a caveat though, if you buy 100% pure tung oil, it'll never dry. I use tung oil all the time, by the gallon but it has to be mixed or treated somehow to dry properly. I use my own mixture of tung oil, linseed oil and varnish, aka sam maloof finish.


The product Johnla referenced is a good, nearly pure tung oil finish (has added metal driers to help the finish "cure"). There are many other "tung oil" finishes that have added varnishes or polyurethane to them, which might want to avoid.


Shellac may also be a finsih worth exploring
 

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I just finished a pair of speakers with a zebrawood front baffles. I used Minwax wipe-on poly with good results. I will try to post wome pictures later today.


- Jim
 

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You asked about "teak oil", it is very similar to tung oil. Both are linseed oil based. I believe teak oil has more drying additives than tung oil. If you look at the MSDS you can see the difference. Teak oil is used alot in the marine woodworking arena.


Good pointers from Johnla and shokunin about drying additives in the tung oil, otherwise you will have a real oily finish. The "sam maloof" finish shokunin mentions would also produce a beautiful finish. I can't post links yet but do a search on Sam Maloof and you will find of links for his formulas and techniques. He is a very accomplished woodworker. Add http to this;

http://www.woodworkforums.ubeaut.com...ead/t-603.html


If your speakers are totally made of zebrawood, they no doubt look bold and spectacular given the grain characteristics of the wood. Also all the more reason to "test" a finish on some scrap. Finishing can make or break a project and it is easy to do something quick just to "get it done". Please take the time do do the finish right to showcase the wood, your time and efforts, and definitely to make the most of the money put into the project.


pics?


can't wait to see em


Jerry
 

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I was a licensed custom cabinet manufacturer for 25 years. I've had 2 of my projects featured in "Phoenix Homes & Gardens" magazine articles. I've been using WATCO brand Danish Oil for 30 years on all sorts of exotic hardwoods. Two years ago we used it on a custom writing table made of solid Padauk. Watco Oil comes in colors, but I mostly use the natural. It dries real hard and is almost foolproof for amateurs. You can put many coats on to build up the finish or increase the gloss from satin. After it cures you can use Watco Wax for more polish.
 

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jsalk - sweet looking speakers, can't wait to see the curly walnut, very nice work, I'll bet they sound as good as they look or better


Don - isn't Danish oil very similar to the maloof blend? I have used Danish oil a few times on some walnut and it worked well. (OT - great fish story!)


Jerry
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Well it looks like there are many ways to do the finish and come out with great results. I'm glad that more people chimed in. It sounds like Tung oil is the way to go if I were to go by the numbers.

Quote:
If your speakers are totally made of zebrawood, they no doubt look bold and spectacular given the grain characteristics of the wood. Also all the more reason to "test" a finish on some scrap. Finishing can make or break a project and it is easy to do something quick just to "get it done". Please take the time do do the finish right to showcase the wood, your time and efforts, and definitely to make the most of the money put into the project.
My cabinets are not totally Zebra wood the baffles, back and plinth will be black and the sides and top will be Zebra wood veneer. The contrast between the black and the light zebra wood and its dark stripes looks great. I will be taking my time for sure on the finish, Ive worked too hard on the cabinets to just rush the final stage.


I'll check out the danish oil and the min wax that was mentioned as well on some scrap and use my best judgment and choose a winner. I plan on starting the finishing process this weekend and totally finish up buy Sunday the 28th so hopefully i'll have some pictures for you on Monday the 29th.
 

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RandyBes -


Yours are coming together nicely. A number of faces have been veneered and the rest should be done by Monday. Then the finishing begins!


- Jim
 

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Jim,


Sounds great. I will be posting my review of the speakers after I get them-so everybody stay tuned-probably be a month or so longer-but I am excited!!


Randy
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Spydrman
Don - isn't Danish oil very similar to the maloof blend? I have used Danish oil a few times on some walnut and it worked well. (OT - great fish story!)Jerry
I'm not familiar with the maloof blend. sorry. I've used the WATCO for so many decades with superb results that I've not tried that many others.


Yeah, I've had so much fun telling the "Big Otto" story. Last year a magazine photographer was here doing a high-end audio story when he spotted "Big Otto" and wanted to hear the story first hand. In the middle of the story his editor called and told him to get over to the airport to see Senator John McCain. He told his editor he would go after he heard the rest of the fish story. ha, ha. "Big Otto" outranks a senator. ha, ha.
 

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Don, you stole my thunder....I was about to suggest Watco Danish oil as well. I've used a gazillion types of oil finishes and have found the same thing - Watco's danish oil blend seems to have just the right amount of dryers and additives to make a truly brainless oil finish that's simple to recoat to desired gloss level. I prefer to apply with a fine steel wool in a buffing type rub, leave wet for around 10 - 15 minutes, then wipe down in a buffing technique with soft (or cheese) cloth. You wind up with a glass smooth finish the FIRST time. Then, just reapply new coats till you achieve whatever gloss level you desire. Wipe down with lemon oil once every 6 months to maintain, or apply a paste wax and buff for a durable maintenance free finish. Truly easy stuff to work with (and I'm a big fan of easy!!).
 

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Well no matter what he goes with, they all can look very good, to outstanding if done right..

But I would never say that going with a paste wax and buffing it, is ending up as a durable and maintenance free finish. As paste wax surely is not, durable or maintenance free.
 

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Jsalk,


Isn't Lacewood about the coolest stuff around?!! (Your sides look like Lacewood, or possibly a fine birdseye maple) I love the way your sides turned out. For your next project(s), let me recommend some other exotics I've worked with that give truly jaw dropping looks....

Purpleheart - nothing like a wood that turns purple naturally!

Australian Bloodwood - very similar to red heart, but an incredible grain structure and color, and very dense.

African Paduk - gorgeous orange wood - little soft though, use only for veneer on speakers

Honduran rosewood - yummy grain and color

Ebony - who can resist a super dense wood that's black in color? I try to find some with a slight amount of milky grain in it.

and my all time favorite....Tulipwood - this is absolutely the most gorgeous wood I've ever worked with. Milky beige background with a rainbow of bluish-purple to red to brownish grain swirling through it on a good piece. Man I love that stuff - pricey though...on a par with ebony in cost.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Johnla
Well no matter what he goes with, they all can look very good, to outstanding if done right..

But I would never say that going with a paste wax and buffing it, is ending up as a durable and maintenance free finish. As paste wax surely is not, durable or maintenance free.
Maybe I should have spelled it out...Far less mainenance than NOT doing it. I've used this technique countless times and not needed to do anything to the finish for several years. That help? Now, if we're talking about a table that get's used regularily, then of course, you're going to have to maintain it, But we're not talking tables here - we're talking speakers that most likely aren't gonna be touched often....
 

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but these speakers look so good everyone that sees them will want to touch them.....
 
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