I had a great time at the AWGB Seminar in Yarnfield over the weekend. If you were there and came and said hello, thank you. It was great to meet you. It was good to see quite a wide range of ages at the Seminar too, with some very talented new turners coming through the ranks and rubbing shoulders with the more established and equally talented established turners. Well done to the AWGB for organising such a great event. Thanks also to Darren and Stephen for their help in setting up and packing away!

Just the other week we were saying how the change in the weather means that, for many of you, it’s time to get back out into the workshop. And an email that came in this week reminded me that it might be time to mention the effect weather can have at this time of year. The email in question was from someone having trouble with the Acrylic Gloss Lacquer. They’d applied it to an item they’d turned, but it had dried with a cloudy, milky finish. What had gone wrong? Simply put, it’s the weather. They asked if it could be because it was a cold day, and this is part of the problem, but the real issue is that the air in their workshop was probably damp. All finishes suffer in such conditions, but sprays even more so, because the material will pick up droplets of water whilst travelling from nozzle to surface. A cloudy finish is a classic sign of a finish affected by a damp atmosphere.
Sadly, there’s no easy solution to this; the finish needs to come off and be re-applied on a warmer day.

Durability of finishes is always a popular question, and I was asked this week about a suitable finish for a handle being used as part of a coffee machine in a restaurant. It needed to be hard-wearing, water-resistant, and give a bright, gloss finish. Despite such a specific list, that was quite easy to answer. The Acrylic Gloss Lacquer gets another mention this week as it fits the bill perfectly. It’s very tough, and three coats will build to give a great shine, which can be enhanced even further by using the Burnishing Cream if required.
This makes it great for anything that will be handled a lot but could get wet, such as in a kitchen or bathroom.

If you’ve seen one of my demos, you’ll know that I use the aforementioned Burnishing Cream a lot. I like to describe it as a ‘get out of jail free card’ if you’re not getting the shine you want from your finish. I’m often asked to clarify which products it can be used on, and how long should be left before using it.
Burnishing Cream works best on hard coatings that leave a definite coating on the timber, so Lemon Oil, Food Safe Finish and any of the waxes aren’t suitable.
But it can be used on any of the other oils once properly dried (allow at least 2-3 days), and on Friction Polish (use carefully).

It’s also great on any of our lacquers once fully dried, and if you can leave them a little longer to harden more (about 24 hours) they come up a treat. It’ll even take a satin lacquer up to a gloss if you need it!
And it’s great on the Cellulose and Acrylic Sanding Sealers to smooth them back and give a base shine ready for a wax or Friction Polish on top of it.

My thanks to Trent Valley Woodturners for their hospitality on Wednesday evening and for being a great audience for another demo.
Next Thursday I should be onscreen with Emma Cook for a discussion about finishing for her Team Tiny, so if you’re a member I hope to see you there.

And of course, if I miss you there, I’ll be here again next Friday.