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lewisc

Raising timber grain

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How many here use water to raise the grain on a cutting board?

I've never done it before but on the last one I made (long grain), the was a fuzzy patch after wiping it. I've just made another (long grain) for a friend and had a go at wiping it down with a wet rag and sanding back to 220g before applying mineral oil.

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I use water to raise grain on anything I make that is intended to be handled. This is especially true if the finish will be a non-film type. Never had it leave anything but silky smoothness.

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41 minutes ago, curlyoak said:

I use denatured alcohol. What kind of finish do I see in the last picture?

Had to google that one - mostly sure it's methylated spirits over here. I still haven't quite worked out what mineral spirits is - I think that one is mineral turpentine. 

Is there a difference between using denatured alcohol and water? I've put on a coat of mineral oil. I rub it in and let some sit on top overnight before rubbing in a few more coats.

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Yes there is a difference between denatured alcohol (DNA) and water. I've read any times that DNA will raise the grain but in practice it doesn't work for me. I run my cutting boards under the faucet at the kitchen sink and let them dry over night before finish sanding. If I'm in a rush i'll sometimes dry in the oven set to 150F but that makes me nervous that I'll get some un even drying.

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I'm with Drew, alcohol doesn't do much to raise the grain. Friend of mine had been using it, but ran out and used water instead on a recent project. Says the difference is astounding.

I usually just wipe the surface with a wet rag, or occasionally spritz with a spray bottle. It doesn't take much.

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@lewisc Denatured alcohol is the solvent in shellac. Also called ethel alcohol or ethenol. Basically grain alcohol, think 180 proof, with an additive to make it undrinkable.

I suppose if it were mixed with water it might raise the grain better. I only use it as a cleaner or solvent.

I'm becoming a fan of using water on all projects. Rough sand, wet and let dry at least a couple of hours. Sand to 150 and wet again. I've heard of sanding to 180 and wetting again before going to 220. I believe wetting two times is plenty so I stop wetting at 150. I alwayssand to at least 220.

Wetting has two major advantages. Raising the grain gives you a smoother finish and while the project is wet you can see any glue spots or scratches. The second wetting verifies that you fixed the blemishes.

 

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Actually, I read in some magazine that alcohol based dyes are sometimes used specifically because they don't raise the grain like water based dyes will.

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