In Finishing, Projects, Questions And Answers, Techniques

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Q & A: Final Rubout



I always have problems getting a smooth finish. I sand the
wood with 220 paper,wipe it with a tack cloth, apply three coats
of high-quality varnish, and still get a rough surface! What can I do
to get that “professional” look?



You’ve got dust problems, like everybody else.
Even if you carefully tack the wood prior to
finishing, the air (and you!) are full of small
dust particles that settle on your finish
right after you’ve laid it down. To get
rid of the “nibs,” rub out the last dried
coat with a dab of wax and extra-fine
steel wool.This will polish the last coat
and scrape off the nibs leaving a silky
smooth finish.

Click any image to view a larger version.

Give your work a final rubdown with wax
and extra-fine steel wool.

This story originally appeared in American Woodworker October 2000, issue #82.

October 2000, issue #82

Purchase this back issue.


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