Happy Birthday to the Newsletter! We were four on Wednesday! Yes, we’ve been sending these out for four years, well done if you’ve been with us from the start. And thank you!
Also on Wednesday we had the great pleasure of hosting a demo from our good friend Gary Lowe, and as expected it was great. Gary never fails to please, and the comments from the audience certainly showed this was no exception. If you didn’t see it, it’s still available on our YouTube channel for a couple of weeks – it’s highly recommended. All of our Conkers LIVE demonstrators have been great, we’re so lucky to be able to work with so many talented turners.
Let’s have a go at some questions…

First off the blocks this week was from someone re-finishing a table. They were hoping to avoid having to strip the whole thing back to bare wood, but weren’t sure what had been used on the table previously. That made it a little more difficult, as it’s hard to know what can be used without causing a bad reaction. The safest bet in a situation like this is a wax, as this will go over pretty much any previous coating without any problems. Being a table, our Microcrystalline Wax is probably the best choice as it is harder wearing than a normal wax.
I was updated on this and my correspondent is now considering stripping back to bare wood, and asked if Melamine Lacquer would be a good choice to finish the table. It ticks a lot of the boxes, but can be hard to apply over a large area, I suggested that 2-3 coats of Hard Wax Oil would be easier and equally hard wearing.

Still with Melamine Lacquer, I was asked how long to leave it before using Burnishing Cream. Several coats of lacquer had been applied.
Before answering the main question, it’s worth mentioning that we only recommend a maximum of three coats of lacquer be applied, and that Burnishing Cream should only be used on the final coat. Any intercoat sanding should be done with a dry abrasive. Burnishing Cream can be used about 20 minutes after applying the Melamine Lacquer. If it’s possible to wait 24 hours, for the lacquer to harden off more, the Burnishing Cream will work even better and give an even brighter shine.

And finally for this week, a question that we couldn’t help with. We were contacted by someone building a cheese room; that’s a room where cheese is made, not a room made of cheese. Sadly.
What they wanted was an antibacterial paint, which is something rather specialist and not something we could supply. I’ve come across such things in the past, there are many things that can be added to paints and finishes; some make them flame retardant, some harder wearing, and some anti-bacterial. As well as cheese rooms, the latter would be used in hospitals and especially operating theatres. But unfortunately it wasn’t something we could help with.

That’s all the questions for this week, but bear with me whilst I take a huge departure from my normal Newsletter jottings…
For the past six months we’ve been bombarded with emails and letters from our suppliers to say they are putting their prices up. And these aren’t small increases, most of them are in double figures.
We’re proud that during the pandemic we kept the vast majority of our prices the same, but we can do so no longer. We will be implementing an across the board rise of about 5% on our products this weekend. This won’t be welcome news if you’ve been thinking of ordering from our site soon. So, Chestnuteers, in what is probably a one-off thing, I’m going to give you a code to use that will take 5% off, so you can buy at pretty much pre-increase prices. The code will be valid until midnight on Sunday, and will only activate after the prices have gone up. If it isn’t recognised at checkout, you’re either too late or too early!
The code is  – sorry, Newsletter subscribers only!
Please don’t share this. If we see or hear of this code being handed out we will cancel it, so don’t be the one to spoil it for everyone else. This is for our Chestnuteers only.

I’ll be back with another Newsletter next week, working our way to our fifth birthday!

All the best