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Tru-Oil Finish (How do I make it glossy?)

Discussion in 'Finely Finished' started by Royal Tele, Aug 2, 2009.

  1. Home Grown Tele

    Home Grown Tele Tele-Holic

    Age:
    67
    894
    Aug 21, 2006
    The Queens
    I've done a bunch of necks with Tru-Oil and buffed them to a high shine.

    Four coats thinly applied with fingers and rubbed in and dry between coats, then OOOO steel wool to a matte finish to get it flat. 3 more coats applied the same way and let cure for a couple of days. Then buff it good and hard with a soft piece of t-shirt or denim. If you want a high gloss shine get a cheap car buffer (Walmart has them for $15) and some 3M Perfect-It and buff it up. It'll shine like crazy!
     

  2. MercDane

    MercDane TDPRI Member

    13
    Sep 3, 2012
    Croatia
    How long before buffing?

    Hi everyone,

    Just joined the forum in the midst of my first tele home project. Seeing the abundance of support and information here I found it impossible to resist. :)

    Interestingly enough, I'm doing my first tele's neck with Truoil and came across this old thread, touching on the exact same issues I'm dealing with / have doubts about.
    I indeed would like to have a high gloss shine, got myself a buffer and some polish and I'm ready to start buffing (as per T Holic's post)! My last four coats (I've put on 10 all together) are a week old and I read somewhere that in order to buff Truoil you need to let it cure for 4-6 weeks depending on the intervals between coats, temperature, etc. But then there seem to be other schools of thought on that -like 1 week, 2-3 days, ...

    I'm really anxious to move on with the project and not having to wait another 3-5 weeks, so if anyone can point me in the right direction here, I'd appreciate it a lot.

    Thanks,
    Gabriel
     

  3. flyingbanana

    flyingbanana Poster Extraordinaire

    Colt made some good points, but when I want a gloss finish with Tru Oil, I simply add more coats of it just like clear lacquer. Then after it's dried for a few days, I wet sand a little. After that, I buff. It's pretty easy to sand through, just like any finish, so either sand carefully, or just apply some extra coats.
     

    Attached Files:


  4. MercDane

    MercDane TDPRI Member

    13
    Sep 3, 2012
    Croatia
    Tnx for the quick response. Nice piece on the picture!
    I'd go with more coats but as mentioned I already got 10 on there. So I suppose it's down to sanding/buffing. Right, I know from experience that sanding could be dicey business. Could I skip sanding and cut straight to polishing/buffing maybe? You said you let it dry for a few days, so I take it I can get started, now?
     

  5. flyingbanana

    flyingbanana Poster Extraordinaire

    Unless it's real cold there. You can try whatever method you want, I'm sure you'll do fine however you approach the finish. If it doesn't turn out the way you expected, you can try something else.
     

  6. '56Teleman

    '56Teleman Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    61
    Feb 25, 2006
    Lindenhurst, IL
    You'll find valuable info here:

    http://www.thegearpage.net/board/showthread.php?t=711780

    I hit every third coat with 000 steel wool and after the final rubbing I use Meguire's Scratch-X and rub HARD. So far, I've been happy.



    Good Luck
     

  7. MercDane

    MercDane TDPRI Member

    13
    Sep 3, 2012
    Croatia
    Thanks man. Fortunately the Croatian summer is quite hot! :)
    I'll post back when I have some results.
     

  8. fretman_2

    fretman_2 Friend of Leo's

    May 9, 2011
    Mobile, AL
    +1 on that. The secret is always in the preparation!! Tru Oil will go on glossy and if your surface is already level, then there's not much to do other than pile on the thin coats of Tru Oil. I do lightly buff with synthetic steel wool between coats for good adhesion.

    My building experience is rather limited compared to most here, but I can't think of anything I'd rather use on a neck than Tru Oil.

    Here's a neck I recently did with Tru Oil.

    IMAG0237.jpg


     

  9. MercDane

    MercDane TDPRI Member

    13
    Sep 3, 2012
    Croatia
    Hi Fretman,

    That is a fine-looking neck you got there.
    Thanks for the pointer. This is my first neck and I must say I really like Truoil. From what I've gathered about lacquer or shellac they are harder to work with, remove mistakes from etc. And I also like the feel of Truoil. I guess you could say I'm hooked already. ;-)
    Yes, I realize now the preparation is crucial for a low effort high gloss look. Unfortunately, I found you guys a little late and my prep work might not have been up to the task. I've now rubbed the neck with Mothers mag and aluminum polish, applied gently with fingers and it seems to have enhanced the gloss noticeably. Maybe I'll try that once more.
     

  10. fretman_2

    fretman_2 Friend of Leo's

    May 9, 2011
    Mobile, AL
    Thanks!!

    Lacquer is a relatively easy coating to apply, but you need to spray it and you can't do that in your kitchen (or maybe you can, but I can't). The tru oil you can do while sitting at your kitchen table. You should also wear a respirator while spraying lacquer (I even wear one when I spray outside).

    Your prep work doesn't have to be perfect if you can accept a little grain showing through. I recently did a red oak neck in tru oil and didn't do any fill (other than successive coats of tru oil) and it looks and feels fantastic.

     

  11. MercDane

    MercDane TDPRI Member

    13
    Sep 3, 2012
    Croatia

    You're most welcome. :)

    I am absolutely with you on the ease of working with Truoil. We live in an apartment in Zagreb Croatia and this thing is about as much fume and odor as my wife would tolerate around the place, so lacquer is out of the question for me as well. I too often use the kitchen table to do my guitar work on so Truoil offers a lot of freedom there.

    Well, the prep work wasn't perfect and I've come to terms some grain showing through, which is how the neck looks now after polishing/buffing. It doesn't look that bad really and I love the feel.

    Cheers,
    Gabriel

    p.s. It'd be great to see a picture of your red oak neck if you have one.
     

  12. fretman_2

    fretman_2 Friend of Leo's

    May 9, 2011
    Mobile, AL
    I'll try and get a pic of the red oak neck tonight and post tomorrow.

    Tnx,

     

  13. '56Teleman

    '56Teleman Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    61
    Feb 25, 2006
    Lindenhurst, IL
    This is one I've done. I may try wet sanding in the future, I've liked the results I've seen other get doing it.

    What grade sandpaper do you guys use for wet sanding?

    [​IMG]


    Thanks
     

  14. MercDane

    MercDane TDPRI Member

    13
    Sep 3, 2012
    Croatia
    Great. Tnx.
     

  15. MercDane

    MercDane TDPRI Member

    13
    Sep 3, 2012
    Croatia

    Looks very good.
    I used 1200 with very soapy water. But that was cutting into the Truoil finish way more aggressively than Mothers mag & alu polish, which I ended up using.
     

  16. Keyser Soze

    Keyser Soze Tele-Holic

    948
    Oct 13, 2009
    Johnson City, TN
    Yes, this will occur with any sort of finish that does not 'burn in.' The effect becomes especially visible after level sanding with a block, and it is often referred to as 'witness lines.' Up close they look like the contour lines of a topo map. They cannot be polished out (although a surface layer of wax or polish will often hide them fairly well.)

    But with wipe on finishes the simple solution to this problem is to wipe on one more layer. A very light layer, basically just enough to visible wet the surface, then allow it fully dry before final polishing.

    As others have noted, tru-oil when applied on a smooth surface, usually dries to a medium high gloss (you'll probably never get a 'water wet' gloss though) so in the case of the OP the best solution may be to apply one more light, but physically perfect coat and allow it to cure.
     

  17. '56Teleman

    '56Teleman Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    61
    Feb 25, 2006
    Lindenhurst, IL
    Thanks!



    I've been using Meguire's Scratch-X with decent results.
     

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