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Thread: Matte Finish Tru Oil

  1. #1
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    Matte Finish Tru Oil

    I'm about 20 coats in to a Tru Oil finish & the oil is starting to build up. I like the way it is filling the grain & hardening up, but I'm not much of a fan of the gloss level. To me it feels a bit plasticy & overly glossy. I'm looking back on pictures of the finish after the first couple of coats & I much prefer that low sheen satin, matte look. So I've been looking at ways to knock the sheen back a bit, from cutting compounds to waxes etc..

    I think at this stage I want to continue applying coats of Tru Oil, & wet sanding, to fill the grain, & then figure out how to knock back the gloss level.

    I've found this: https://shop.birchwoodcasey.com/prod...oz-bottle.html
    But I understand it contains silicone, which may not be the best option?.. that is if I don't plan on refinishing it (which I don't). Does anyone have experience using this?

    I've also picked up some micro-mesh pads & am contemplating buffing the sheen down with them, or 0000 steel wool, & maybe something like this wax? - https://gillyswaxesandpolishes.com.a...makers-wax-cmw

    Does anyone have any tips for achieving a nice matte satin finish with tru oil?

  2. #2
    Moderator Brendan's Avatar
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    I got a satin effect from TruOil (https://www.buildyourownguitar.com.a...ead.php?t=2759) by applying with 800 grit (from memory) wet and dry sand paper. Stoked with the outcome - couple of years old and still smooth as a baby's rear end.

  3. #3
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    Thanks Brendan. Not sure how 800 grit would go on mine.. using 1200 grit makes me nervous of cutting through the oil & into the stain

    That is a great looking bass, by the way. The natural finish on the bass looks mint.

  4. #4
    Moderator Brendan's Avatar
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    From memory, there weren't that many (<10) layers. Because you're applying with the wet and dry, you're bringing some of the sawdust into the finish.

    Yep - love this finish the most of all my guitars.

  5. #5
    Hi Dan_B.
    Personally I like the look that buffed Tru Oil will give, but for what I think you're looking for I would recommend synthetic sanding pads.
    Some refer to it as synthetic "steel wool". You can get them from The Sandpaper Man (probably elsewhere too).

    They're available in different grades (colours). I have two that I use regularly, one is gold, the other is grey. I can't remember what grit they are but the gold one is perfect for a satin finish - not too aggressive.

    edit to add:
    The ones I have are Bear-Tex brand, and the Gold = 1000 and Grey = 600.
    There are also Norton brand pads that are rated 000 & 0000 like steel wool.
    Last edited by McCreed; 10-05-2019 at 05:27 PM.
    Making the world a better place; one guitar at a time...

  6. #6
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    Thanks McCreed. Will keep this in mind. The Bear-Tex look like a better option than the Micro-Mesh ones that I already have. They look bigger & easier to handle. Thanks.

  7. #7
    Yes, the Bear-Tex & Norton ones are very different than the Micro-mesh pads.

    The MM pads are basically an emery cloth attached to a foam backing. The BT pads are just like the Scotch-Brite pads you get at Woolies or Bunnings except in much finer and wider variety of grits. They almost resemble a type of air filter material but with aggregate attached. I honestly think they're just what you're looking for.

    BTW, the bog standard Scotch-Brite pads are very handy in the shop as well. The green ones are pretty coarse but work great on hard finishes like polyester or even sanding bare timber.
    Making the world a better place; one guitar at a time...

  8. #8
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    Great. Thanks for that, McCreed. I've just placed an order for some of the BT pads. I'll give them a go.

  9. #9
    Excellent. Let us know how it goes!
    Making the world a better place; one guitar at a time...

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