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Thread: Sticky BLO

  1. #1

    Sticky BLO

    A couple of years ago my friend asked me to help him build an entertainment cabinet. So I built it in his garage/barn/shop Stove warmed on cold days. Anyway we built the thing and then he wanted it color matched to another piece in the room. I mixed up color pigments and BLO (my normal concoction) an all went well, I applyed and left the finishing up to him. He put several coats of Poly then carried it into his house and so on.... Time goes by and this summer when he was doing some additional remodel he noticed the piece was peeling and not really alligator but more of a scabies skin infection look. Help he plead. so yesterday I used a Carbide cabinet scraper and removed the finish but the BLO was still sticky. Couldn't sand as the residue clogged the discs ASAP. Washed each piece with Mineral Spirits and after it dried I was able to sand. So....

    I can't figure why it didn't cure. One thought was that the piece was too cold when he applied the poly and the BLO hadn't dried. But it only happened to the top sectionand both were done at the same time??? But I do remember that the Poplar pieces foir the face of the cabinet (the problem pieces) were purchased new as I had on hand (for a good number of years) enough Poplar for the base face pieces. Was the "New" poplar higher MC and then did't absorb the BLO and prevent it from curing properly, With higher MC did cold nights in the garage freeze inside the wood? and then it was too cold for the finish? Was it a bad batch of BLO, if so, why not the rest of the cabinet/ Questions I don't know but thought I would get some opinions.

    BTW, I found that the 3M Blue discs resisted the clogging best and I went to BORG and got a 10 pack to be able to get down to raw wood again. Raining today so the staining will wait for a dry-er climate (don't want to have to go through this again.

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Definitely sounds like the BLO was not cured before it was sealed. I normally wipe down my BLO'd pieces for a week or so before I deem them ready to proceed. I do use a 50/50 mix of BLO and mineral spirits for some things and this is ready in about 3 days.

    Is it just an area that got missed during wipe-down or do you suspect the whole piece? You can generally clean up the piece with mineral spirits (really well) and refinish. The oil that has been absorbed may keep your color so that you only need to re-seal but you will want all the surface BLO and finish cleaned off well.
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C. Clarke

  3. #3
    It appears to be just those pieces I purchased new at the BORG as the Birch Ply did fine as well as the face pieces on the lower cabinet that was from stock that I had on hand.

    My guess is that the new stock did not absorb the BLO as well and thus didn't cure out as fast. I left the finishing up to my buddy and can't attest to how well he allowed it to dry before application. He lives in another county and I was running over there on spare time to help him watch me do the work, I know now I should have held his hand till the task was finished.

    You are right, it takes a while for BLO to dry and amature hurry-up will come back to haunt you. I did consider a good wash with MS and start anew but the coloring was so splotchy I wanted to take it down to raw wood again, Used a ton of RO discs but it is clean now and will oversee the finishing myself this time around.

  4. #4
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    Glad that worked out. I didn't notice that some of it was veneer. On those surfaces the BLO soaks in pretty quick as it hits the layer of glue on the other side of the veneer so there's not much oil to dry.

    You're abrasive supplier is probably lovin' you about now ;-) Again, glad it worked out.
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C. Clarke

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Tokyo Japan
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    Sometimes I wonder why guys still use BLO.....?

    I mean you do hear a lot more "problems" associated with it, that most other finishes...

    Sucks this happened, but it looks like you have got they problem on the run now for sure.

    Keep us posted.

    Oh yeah, when in doubt, blame it on the BORG
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  6. #6
    Any BORG in Japan?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    The Japanese version of it........

    Joyful Honda Tour
    <- Link

    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Stockport, England
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    Another Dumb Limey Question

    OK,

    What is BLO?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duncan Cheslett View Post
    OK,

    What is BLO?
    Boiled Linseed Oil
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Longview, WA
    Posts
    8
    BLO = Boiled Linseed Oil

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