I’m back! Thank you to everyone who wished me a good holiday. I had a lovely time thanks, playing lots of tennis in the Portuguese sunshine. My thanks to the Chestnut team for looking after everything so well in my absence, and to Mel for last week’s Newsletter. She’d like to thank everyone for the positive response and all the lovely comments.
Before we get to the questions, don’t forget to join us for the next episode of Conkers LIVE next Tuesday, which will feature a live demo from Colwin Way. Click on this link https://youtu.be/uaVf_gGwMFU to go to our YouTube channel to set a reminder.
But now, back to business, back to the questions!

A common question I get is ‘what is the best finish for… oak…ash… yew…[insert your favourite timber here]?’ It’s not really possible to answer that. Nearly all of our finishes will work on pretty much any timber, giving a great result every time. The real problem though, is that the choice of finish isn’t really determined by the timber, but by the desired finish, and even more importantly, the intended use of the item being made.
Does it need to be hardwearing, child safe, water resistant, food safe, glossy, matt, suitable for outdoor use, etc etc? I always think that it’s important to fit the product to the project, and that the choice of finish should be part of the design process, along with factors such as shape and method.

Something that is easier to answer is about the best finish for wooden pens. This will need to be hardwearing and able to withstand a lot of handling. Pens are usually a bright finish as well, and to get the best look it’s worth spending a little extra time on the finishing.
I’d start with a coat of Cellulose Sanding Sealer, followed by a couple of coats of Melamine Lacquer, sanding down gently between all the coats. Next I’d use the Melamine Gloss Lacquer spray, which will give a great final lacquer coat. Allow that to dry, and polish it using the Burnshing Cream. By now you should have a great finish, but if you want to go further for that ‘showroom finish’ apply a coat of Friction Polish, allow that to dry and use the Burnishing Cream again. Finally, use the Microcrystalline Wax to prevent constant handling, marking the finish too quickly.

And finally for this week; I’m sure I’ve covered this one before, but we get new readers sign up all the time, and it never hurts to give a little reminder… Can an aerosol wax polish be used over one of our paste waxes?
The answer is that yes it can, but it’s really not the best way to look after something you’ve lovingly made and finished with our products. Some of these aerosols contain little to no wax, and can be a little harsh for delicate finishes. The best maintenance for something finished with wax is a polish with a soft cloth, and the application of a little more wax when needed – but use it sparingly; too much can cause smears.

The pdf version of last week’s Newlsetter was a little late being uploaded to our archive folder last week, sorry. It’s there now if you haven’t got it yet.
I’ll have been out and about again by the time this arrives in your inbox, giving a demo in Billericay, Essex for Thameside Turners. If you were there I hope you enjoyed it!
Meanwhile, I’ll be back again next week with more questions and answers.

All the best