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Thread: clear finish on Purpleheart?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    39.92*N x 86.01*W

    clear finish on Purpleheart?

    What would you recomend? Obviously, I don't want anything to mess with that gorgeous purple tone - but I want the wood protected.

    If it helps any, this will just be something decorative, hanging on a wall.

    If anybody has suggestions, I'm all ears.

    -Kevin in Indy
    "Heroic? He fell off his bloody Aeroplane!"

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    ABQ NM
    I'd think pretty much any of the clear wipe-on finishes would work fine. I'd probably use Minwax Antique Oil finish, just because I already have some on the shelf in the shop. Wipe-on poly, or one of the tung oil blends should also work great.

    If in doubt, try the finish on a few scraps, being sure to also follow the same sanding routine as on the piece you want to finish.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    lutefisk capitol, USA
    Get something with UV inhibitors or blockers. Purpleheart will turn a very rich brown over time. I have heard that placing it in the sun will return the purple, but can't say for sure. Check with this guy and see if he has any advice on his site.

  4. #4
    Using with an oil based finish will turn the shade to a cranberry color. If you want to keep the purple "grape" color, use a water based finish. There is nothing that will keep purpleheart from browning over time, but if the wood is sealed with a finish, kept from direct sunlight, it is a very slow process. It holds it's color much longer than paduak, sp?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Rio Rancho, NM
    We've had very good luck with purpleheart by clear-coating it with lacquer. Two or three coats. I have some purpleheart accents on some of my furniture, and it's still a nice purple. Granted, it doesn't get a lot of direct sunlight, but my living-room tables are four years old and still as purple as the day they went into the house.
    Nancy Laird
    FWW Registered Voter and Voting Member
    Woodworker, turner, laser engraver; RETIRED!!

    A veteran is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to his country for an amount of 'up to and including my life.' If you love your country, thank a vet.

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