I’ve been on the road again (should I change my name to Davey?). I was up in Lancashire on Monday visiting the Red Rose Woodturning Club. It was third time lucky; my first booking was postponed due to lockdown, next it was that extremely hot day last year when we were advised not to travel, but this time I finally made it and had a great time.
Then, on Wednesday, I was a little closer to home, on the Norfolk Broads (not literally!) at Wherry Woodturners. This is a new club which is doing really well, with a very interested and enthusiastic membership. Keep it up!

At one of this week’s demos, I was asked about the difference between Burnishing Cream and Cut’n’Polish. In some ways, they both do the same thing – smoothing the surface to prepare for finishing.
There are a couple of differences, though. Burnishing Cream has very little effect on bare wood, whereas Cut’n’Polish, because it has a wax base, will build to a finish. In my opinion, Burnishing Cream does a better job of bringing up a shine, but this is what it is designed to do. Cut’n’Polish will bring up a shine as well, but its main purpose is to do the job of an abrasive sheet, but without creating sanding dust, making the job of sanding just a little more tolerable.

Whilst our products are very popular with woodturners, they can be used on pretty much any woodworking project. Such was a question that came in recently, asking for advice on refinishing a bannister rail. I suggested a number of options; firstly, I wondered how good/bad the rail was, and whether a good clean up using WoodWax 22 on NyWeb (or Steel Wool) would do the job. If not, and the bannister needed to be stripped right back, then a sealer first (probably Shellac Sanding Sealer as it would be easier to apply on a long run) followed by WoodWax 22 would be good. A coat of Microcrystalline Wax on top of this would help keep it looking good longer.
The other alternative would be to use an oil; this would be relatively easy to apply, and give a long-lasting, hard-wearing finish.

I often talk about choosing a product from our range based on its properties – hard-wearing, water-resistant, toy safe etc. There’s another factor that I don’t often mention, but whilst talking to someone on the phone the other day, it occurred to me that maybe I should add it to the list. And that’s the drying time – more importantly, in the conversation I was having, the touch dry/dust free time. This means how long it takes for the surface to be dry so that anything that comes into contact with it doesn’t stick to it. In a lot of cases, this means any sawdust that might be coming from another part of the workshop, but it can also apply just as well to flying insects if you’re working outside!
Most of our products are touch dry in about 5 minutes, some less, but the ones to watch are the oils which remain tacky for a couple of hours, so pick your time to apply them.

And that’s everything for this week. No demos coming up now until the BIG one – that’s our Woodturning Weekender! In two weeks’ time I’ll be in Manchester helping to get everything set up. But in the meantime we’re still sending out tickets, preparing stock and getting the goody bags ready. If you’re coming, we look forward to seeing you; if you haven’t got your ticket yet, don’t miss out, there’s still time to join the fun. Full details on the Woodturning Weekender website.

See you soon