I hope you’ve had a good week, mine has been hectic as ever! Monday saw me down in Andover demonstrating to Test Valley Turners and I had a great time there. Thursday evening I was at the Chestnut Woodturning Club (no relation) in Hadleigh, Suffolk, also very enjoyable. I do like giving demos, it’s always good to interact with an audience and woodworkers are always a friendly bunch. Hopefully some new subscribers from both evenings too.
A question recently was more of a double-check really, someone asked us to confirm that our Spirit Stains can be mixed into our Cellulose Sanding Sealer, and if so how much.
The answers are yes and about 10% respectively – and the Spirit Stain will also mix into the Melamine Lacquer, Acrylic Sanding Sealer and Acrylic Lacquer. Even into the Hard Wax Oil.
Our correspondent came back to us saying ‘That worked perfectly. I’d stained some wooden chess pieces black and wanted to use a sanding sealer before giving them a wax finish. I’m thinking I’ll lightly wire wool 0000 the sealed surface before a light wax and buff. Excellent products.’
Happy customers always make our day.

We’ve covered cleaning the Buffing Wheels in the past, for when they get a bit clogged up with compound. They can be washed in warm, soapy water or an abrasive can be held against them to wear away the outer edge. Now there’s another option, our new Mop Dresser. A two handled wire brush that is held against the rotating wheel and it removes the excess compound. The Mop Dresser can also be used on new wheels to remove the loose cotton fibres that come off when they are first used and avoid looking like the Abominable Snowturner!

(Talking of the Buffing Wheel Kit, we uploaded a new video to YouTube this week about using the kit, click here if you’d like to see it).

Finally for this week’s questions, someone asked about whether or not to shake our liquid products before use. In most cases they benefit from a shake to get everything to mix in, with one exception…
The Melamine Lacquer is a gloss finish, meaning there are no solids that need to be mixed in (such as a matting agent which would only be added to make the finish satin, matt etc). Thus it doesn’t need shaking and in fact doing so could be detrimental as it could create air bubbles in the lacquer which can then cause tiny pinholes in the finish.
If you forget yourself and shake the can it’s not the end of the world, but it’s not necessary.
The Melamine Gloss Lacquer aerosol does need shaking to mix the lacquer with the propellant. Any air bubbles created will be eliminated by the spraying process.

And that’s it for this week – and this time next week I’ll be on holiday, much needed if I might say so. But fear not! I know many of you look forward to the Newsletters, and for some it marks the start of the weekend, so there will be one next week (and the week after even though I’ll still be away). I hope you won’t mind that I’m going to cheat a little though. I’m going to plunder some of the back issues and refresh some of the questions from very early Newsletters – our subscriber list has grown dramatically in the last year so I’m sure that many of you won’t have seen them previously. Hope that’s ok with you!

So I hope you have a great week, when I get back from holiday it’ll be all systems go for the Woodturning Weekender, I hope I’ll be seeing some of you there.

All the best