Need suggestions for finish on funky end grain table

eyekode

Salem
Corporate Member
I have almost finished sanding my funky end table:
20200209_134742.jpg


It will sit on my mostly covered front porch. When it is super windy some rain may splash in it. Also in some seasons I need to be careful to avoid mold as under the porch gets very little sun.

I have spent hours sanding the top to really emphasize the grain. I typically go for a maloof style finish for furniture but this is my first piece that will have any weather exposure.

Any suggestions?
Thanks!
Salem
 

JohnW

John
Corporate Member
If you want the finish to last a long time, I'd recommend using epoxy as the first coat. Does not have to be a thick coat, just a thin wash/fill application. It seals the wood better than anything I know for outdoor applications and will fill in the cracks. The epoxy will sag down in the cracks so you'll need to put several in them if you want to have them level with the top. Epoxy does not have good UV properties, so after it cures, top coat with multiple coats of a good marine grade spar varnish. It has excellent UV inhibitors and designed to expand/contract with wood movement which is going to be a big issue for outdoor applications. I'd recommend no less than 6 coats of spar varnish. 8-10 coats even better. Go check out System Three's web site. They sell a marine grade spar varnish designed to go directly over their epoxy.

Also, before applying epoxy, or varnish, sand the top only to 180 grit. Don't go down to 220 or finer. 180 grit gives the epoxy and/or varnish something to bite into. This is very important on outdoor application. You can rub out the final finish as smooth as you like, but start out at 180 grit. 150 if you don't have 180, but no finer. Lastly, you should put a few coats of varnish on the bottom just to seal it from ambient moisture.
 

SabertoothBunny

SabertoothBunny
User
My suggestion is to coat the bark first and let that soak in and dry. Then move to the main surface with whatever finish you are using. You may need to do an extra coat or two because that end grain will likely soak up the first couple of coats.
 

eyekode

Salem
Corporate Member
I ended up going with blo and a few layers of spar urethane. The directions said sand with 220 between coats but this left scratch marks. Oh well it is meant to be "rustic". Thanks for the help guys, I will post back in a few years to let you know how it lasted on my covered porch.

IMG_20200216_141758_626.jpg


I also thought it deserved a name. So I call it "Hold my beer"

Best wishes,
Salem
 

Our Sponsors

LATEST FOR SALE LISTINGS

Top