Replicating “rustic” finish

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  • #656665
    Adam Grabek
    Participant

    Hi,

    First of all I would like to say hello to everyone, it’s my first post here as I’m only started with woodworking recently.

    My next project will be simple picture frame but I would really like to finish it so it matches rest of the furniture. The problem is that I have no clue how it was achieved. It’s acacia wood but it also has very interesting texture to it.

    I’m attaching some pictures of the texture detail.

    Best regards
    Adam

    • This topic was modified 2 years, 8 months ago by Adam Grabek.
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    #656717
    Sven-Olof Jansson
    Participant

    Hej Adam,

    Being more wrong than Humphrey Belcher is fairly common to me; but the photos seem to show “weathered and aged” surfaces – possibly as a veneer. Apart from leaving the picture frame outdoors for a substantial time (two centuries have rendered the beams of our croft rich with this surface pattern), the effect can also be reached by using bench planes with toothed blades, designated cutters to power planes, and steel brushes: the most convenient perhaps being a rotating brush on a power drill to remove early wood while leaving the late intact.

    Sven-Olof Jansson
    London, UK; Boston, MA

    #656737
    C White
    Participant

    Hi Adam

    In my opinion, your best bet would be to dilute caustic soda with water and use a spray bottle (like a general cleaner bottle). Spray the wood with it and it will raise the grain to create that look, then you can apply your stain or whatever you choose. You will not achieve that using any form of cutter!

    #656766
    Larry Geib
    Participant

    From the folks a the CDC:

    “ Sodium hydroxide is strongly irritating and corrosive. It can cause severe burns and permanent damage to any tissue that it comes in contact with. Sodium hydroxide can cause hydrolysis of proteins, and hence can cause burns in the eyes which may lead to permanent eye damage.Oct 21, 2014”

    #656844
    C White
    Participant

    Yes, nasty stuff. Probably best to spray the timber instead of yourself..

    #656999
    Sven-Olof Jansson
    Participant

    Dear C White,

    Given the well established health hazards associated with lye (NaOH), would you please – if it’s not asking too much – provide the evidence on the superiority of the method you suggest; unless of course it is subjective anecdotal data or, possibly, hearsay.

    Kindest regards

    Sven-Olof Jansson
    London, UK; Boston, MA

    #657015
    C White
    Participant

    Sven,

    I do not dispute the fact that caustic soda can be a harmful product when used incorrectly, the clue is in the name ‘caustic’. Gloves, long sleeves and a mask if you’re that worried. I’ve had it on my skin and because it was heavily diluted, it had no effect. (I did also wash off pretty soon after)

    I used caustic soda as an experimental method of removing the greying from outdoor furniture (I was inspired by a programme called ‘The Salvager’ in which the salvager would use it prior to applying finish to achieve a rustic look). It didn’t do the best job at removing the greying but it did raise the grain exponentially, very similarly to what Adam has posted.

    If you are asking me to cite published articles on the use of caustic soda as a means of achieving a rustic look, I will not. Mostly because I haven’t looked and I doubt there would be any. By the way, I never claimed the method was “superior”.

    #657133
    Roberto Fischer
    Participant

    I’ve got a free drops of oven cleaner containing lye on myself when placing a carbon steel pan inside a plastic bag to remove its seasoning. The thing got on the bag and that ended up running on my arm past my gloves.

    It burns a lot, but it also washes away easily. It only got on my skin, though.

    All I did was follow advice on the internet without that much consideration. There’s no point in stripping pan seasoning. You should just keep building it up. Anyway, that’s off topic.

    Lye is dangerous. I’d totally avoid it. Using it incorrectly can be a matter of ignorance or lack of experience. I definitely wouldn’t spray a large open surface with it.

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