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  • Zledi
    started a topic Tru-Oil question...

    Tru-Oil question...

    So I am building a Tele and I am about ready to finish it. I have the Tru-Oil and everything else I need. I am just wondering about grain filler and if I really need it?

    I talked to a guy who works in the Gibson custom shop who said since it is an ash body I need to fill it but I have read that it is not necessary at all with Tru-Oil to use grain filler.

    So, do I really need to use grain filler and what would be the benefits of doing so?

  • Quarter
    replied
    You shouldnt need grain filler with oil finishes.
    Once the first coat is applied nothing more is going to sink into the wood.
    I've done tons of natureal finishes with oils and never had to use grain filler on any
    unless I was looking for a specific color. Then I'd use a colered grain filler.

    I think you might be a little confused. Regardless of finish type, grain filling to some degree is necessary if the goal is a flat mirror like result. For example, open pore woods like ash, mahogany, and walnut can benefit from a dedicated fill product. Closed pore woods like maple, poplar, and alder for example do not need "pore filling" and surface leveling / flattening can be achieved with the finish coats.

    I dont use True oil though. The stuff takes longer to dry then Tung oil when applied
    thick. I usually go with thicker coats for a faster buildup to get the lacquered look.
    If you want a minimal coat to look like raw wood then either would look fine.
    Tung oils like minwax has varnish and driers in it so it dries relatively quickly.
    I'm able to apply the first few coats with 12 hours drying and can apply my final
    coats within 24 hours. You can build up enough layers to look like glass
    and be playing the instrument within a week. True oil with the same thickness
    finish may take a month or two to full cure so it wouldnt marr up.

    Just different chemicals for different results. The Tung oil does tend to yellow the
    wood color for a more vintage look.

    First off, to avoid confusion I think its important to point out to readers that your not using a real / pure tung oil product. In fact, many of the so called wiping varnishes that have tung in the name contain little or no real tung oil. Real pure tung is a drying oil that takes a very long time to cure and cross link. Your not going to build any significant finish film with it.

    Second, my experience with Tru Oil apparently is in conflict with your evaluation of it. With a polymerized finish like Tru Oil, oxygen is the catalyst for the curing function. If you slather the coats on it will take a longer time for the oxidization to occur. By applying multiple thin coats you are in effect exposing more of the volume of finish directly to the air. Given normal temps and weather conditions, I can generally re-coat every 2 - 3 hours by using thin coats. Its a classic case where less is more. All in all, it takes me 10 - 12 days to do a mirror finish with Tru Oil

    I guess what it boils down to is that there is a proper way and reason to apply any finish. To do something wrong and then blame / claim the product is inferior does no one any good. I think its best that advice should only be offered if you actually have experience with the proper application of those products.

    And always one to put my money where my mouth is, here is one that was grain filled with Zpoxy finishing resin and finished with Tru Oil.

    .

    Leave a comment:


  • axegrinder
    replied
    That was my thought too. The blue stuff is supposed to be relatively lo-tack. Regardless I ended up going without tape and haven't gotten any on the fretboard surface. I just haven't gotten the back of the neck dripping wet or anything. If I'd had tape on I probably would have gotten lazy (& sloppy) and ended up with oil wicking under the tape anyway.

    As for calling them whoremouth, I have to say I've been impressed so far with the neck they sent me.

    Now you get the War Moth! oke:

    Leave a comment:


  • Belva
    replied

    In order to keep the Tru Oil from getting on the rosewood board when I did the Warmoth neck on my mahogany Tele, I taped it off with blue painter's tape. You can put the tacky side of the tape down on your jeans for a second and pull it off before applying it to the neck to avoid a bunch of rosewood bits from the board coming off when you peel off the tape after it's been sitting there for a while.


    Bits of RW coming off? And it's a Whoremouth neck? Painter's tape is specifically designed to be low tack. If bits come off, it's time to contact Whoremouth and have them make you a new neck.

    Leave a comment:


  • WRGKMC
    replied
    You shouldnt need grain filler with oil finishes.
    Once the first coat is applied nothing more is going to sink into the wood.
    I've done tons of natureal finishes with oils and never had to use grain filler on any
    unless I was looking for a specific color. Then I'd use a colered grain filler.

    I dont use True oil though. The stuff takes longer to dry then Tung oil when applied
    thick. I usually go with thicker coats for a faster buildup to get the lacquered look.
    If you want a minimal coat to look like raw wood then either would look fine.
    Tung oils like minwax has varnish and driers in it so it dries relatively quickly.
    I'm able to apply the first few coats with 12 hours drying and can apply my final
    coats within 24 hours. You can build up enough layers to look like glass
    and be playing the instrument within a week. True oil with the same thickness
    finish may take a month or two to full cure so it wouldnt marr up.

    Just different chemicals for different results. The Tung oil does tend to yellow the
    wood color for a more vintage look.

    Leave a comment:


  • axegrinder
    replied
    Seriously... if Quarter didn't have so much information to share, he should be banned from these Tru Oil conversations because of how awesome his pics look. I mean, how matter how good the rest of our Tru Oil projects turn out, we're inevitably let down slightly because they almost certainly won't look as good as his.

    QFT....No question!

    I am planning to do an appreciation thread after I complete my first TruOil project (neck or neck & body). It's been going quite well thanks to Tom's shared knowledge... and inspiration!

    Leave a comment:


  • cratz2
    replied
    Seriously... if Quarter didn't have so much information to share, he should be banned from these Tru Oil conversations because of how awesome his pics look. I mean, how matter how good the rest of our Tru Oil projects turn out, we're inevitably let down slightly because they almost certainly won't look as good as his.

    Leave a comment:


  • heatheroo
    replied
    If you like tru-oil, I suggest checking out Linspeed. It doesn't have quite as glossy a finish and to me, feels better.

    Leave a comment:


  • axegrinder
    replied
    Okay well it looks like I was right in asking those questions. Thanks Cratz, Tweedledee, DaleH, and Quarter! Just like a traditional finish on a neck with rosewood fretboard, I was planning to apply the TruOil to the edge of the Pau Ferro. If the stuff doesn't cure on either the Goncalo or Pau Ferro then I'll just go without (i.e. sand or steel wool it off).

    Quarter, that amber tinting on the maple looks amazing. If I ever Tru Oil maple, I believe I'll HAVE to go that route. One other question...have you ever worked with lacewood...particularly in conjunction with oil finish? My project strat has a lacewood top and the original Crystalac finsh shrunk right into the open grain. My original plan was to sand the finish way back and apply clear grain filler before respraying...I wonder if Tru Oil might be a better way to go. I want to use trans orange tinting though.

    Leave a comment:


  • Quarter
    replied
    ... I have a Warmoth neck on order: Goncalo Alves with a Pau Ferro board. According to Warmoth no finish is required on these woods. However, I would like to finish the Goncalo in Tru Oil anyway.

    For anyone who has finished a neck with a rosewood board, do you Tru Oil the playing surface? If not do you somehow protect it?

    I can't speak to that combination specifically, but in general, Tru Oil can have issues drying / curing on naturally oily woods, cocobolo being one of the worst. Some people do Tru Oil their rosewood boards and then use some denim or other cloth and vigorously burnish / polish / wipe it off.
    If you do decide to try a little on the Pau Ferro, a rag and some naphtha will remove Tru Oil as long as its not fully kicked.

    Leave a comment:


  • cratz2
    replied
    Sorry... I would NOT apply Tru Oil to the top/fret side of the fret board. I probably WOULD apply the tiny amount to the sides of the fretboard where binding would be if it was bound. Again, I'm not giving that as any sort of advice... it's just what I would personally do.

    Or you could do the right thing and tape it off like Tweedledee shows.

    Leave a comment:


  • DaleH
    replied
    If you do get a little on the rosewood like along the sides, you can steelwool it down to wood again pretty easy. I just left the sides where the fret markers are tru oiled though.

    Leave a comment:


  • Tweedledee
    replied
    I wouldn't put Tru Oil on the rosewood fretboard. As for the Pau Ferro, I have no experience with Tru Oil and that wood.

    In order to keep the Tru Oil from getting on the rosewood board when I did the Warmoth neck on my mahogany Tele, I taped it off with blue painter's tape. You can put the tacky side of the tape down on your jeans for a second and pull it off before applying it to the neck to avoid a bunch of rosewood bits from the board coming off when you peel off the tape after it's been sitting there for a while. Touching it to your jeans takes off a bit of the tackiness. Alternatively, you could probably use the 'delicate surfaces' painter's tape that I believe is purple.

    You can see the taped off neck here:

    Leave a comment:


  • axegrinder
    replied
    Again, I know nothing about Pau Ferro and I'm not offering that as advice.


    Well even Warmoth indicated that this neck requires no finish to legitimize its warranty. If the Tru Oil is removable then I won't sweat it. I can do my best to keep the stuff off the front, but knowing me...

    Leave a comment:


  • cratz2
    replied
    Ah... I'm not sure... I think I'd probably just Tru Oil the edge of the fretboard, but not the top (fret side) of the fretboard and would try to keep it as thin as possible on the sides of the rosewood.

    I probably wouldn't not Tru Oil the top of a traditional/Indian rosewood fretboard though.

    Again, I know nothing about Pau Ferro and I'm not offering that as advice.

    Leave a comment:

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