What is a durable but natural looking finish for a Walnut dining table?

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Andy-C
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What is a durable but natural looking finish for a Walnut dining table?

Postby Andy-C » Mon Jun 26, 2017 8:08 pm

Hi folks,

I know this kind of question has been asked a thousand times, but I have to ask because my head is awash with different opinions from trawling the internet looking for the right wood finish.

I am making a Walnut dining table, and when I come to finish it, I need a finish that is two things...
1. Durable: as it's a dining table, it will get wear and tear. Ideally I don't want to be in a situation where it needs to be refinished/repaired again and again.
2. Natural looking: that looks as if the timber is bare and unfinished (or as close to this as possible with commonly available products). I don't mind if the timber colour becomes a little richer, but I don't want the surface to have any kind of sheen, or apparent film layer.

My understanding is this...
Wax is not an option because of its durability - it's susceptible to wear and also moisture.
I've used water-based matt varnish in the past, but it leaves a plasticky look to the surface. I've read that thinning the varnish and applying just a couple of thin coats will give a less plastic look - any thoughts on this?

So, I'd appreciate suggestions about what products would achieve this type of finish - please let me know what kind of experience you've had with what you're suggesting!

Many thanks,

Andy.

promhandicam
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Re: What is a durable but natural looking finish for a Walnut dining table?

Postby promhandicam » Mon Jun 26, 2017 9:25 pm

Osmo Raw would be my choice.

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Re: What is a durable but natural looking finish for a Walnut dining table?

Postby Andy-C » Mon Jun 26, 2017 9:50 pm

Hi Promhandican, do you have much experience of using Osmo Raw... how does it look, and how does it stand up to wear and tear?

Thanks!

promhandicam
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Re: What is a durable but natural looking finish for a Walnut dining table?

Postby promhandicam » Tue Jun 27, 2017 7:33 pm

I use osmo polyx all the time on furniture and find it very durable. Osmo raw is relatively new but is designed for light woods and they claim that it doesn't change the colour as much as other finishes. I actually bought 2.5l of it today as I have to build some office furniture next week in white beech. Will post up the results.

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Re: What is a durable but natural looking finish for a Walnut dining table?

Postby bloonose » Wed Jun 28, 2017 1:12 pm

I just tested this stuff and found it too matt for me, maybe its exactly what you want ? you'd want the version called pure... If its been made for floors I'd expect it to be pretty tough...

http://www.rubiomonocoat.com/en/p/produ ... country=gb

promhandicam
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Re: What is a durable but natural looking finish for a Walnut dining table?

Postby promhandicam » Wed Jun 28, 2017 10:54 pm

Attached are some photos of a bit of scrap white beech sanded to 180 g with ordinary Polyx and Raw Osmo on it. The Raw is definitely closer to the natural wood colour and is matt rather than satin. In the tin it is white rather than the usual polyx brown.

HTH

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