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Will pure Tung Oil (Rockler) dry if Not mixed with min. spirits?

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing and Repairs' started by Ignition Override, Nov 20, 2020 at 8:32 PM.

  1. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

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    Bought the Tung today, and we don't have mineral spirits without an extra errand to a store. It's for gun furniture: maybe 2-4 guns.

    On wood where the stain has dried--no fingerprinting, tackiness--will a single, thin layer of 100% Tung require several days (or more) to dry ?
    Or will it not really quite dry and 'cure'? >>> Just tell me the truth<<<.

    I'm quite aware of several pros' descriptions of how they use it, but they don't seem to explain why 100% is Not preferred, and how many days are required (dry room, breeze etc).

    "Rockler 100% Tung".
     
  2. earlthegoat2

    earlthegoat2 Member

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    It should dry/cure in a few days. Maybe 3-5. It takes half a dozen coats to start building up and then it is not very durable but easily repaired.

    I’m not aware of why pure tung oil is not preferred. Maybe time or durability. I won’t use it because of its durability. I will mix it with mineral spirits and spar varnish to expedite the finishing process but really like it’s relative toughness over other oil finishes.
     
  3. Drail

    Drail Member

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    You should not need to mix with mineral spirits - it will dry naturally but it takes at least 3 to 5 days. Be patient - it is a great finish but it takes time and multiple applications.
     
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  4. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

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    earlthegoat2/Drail:

    To somehow speed the drying, maybe my Bullseye (Zinsser) Spar Varnish, I/Outdoor Semi-Gloss could be mixed with some Tung? This Bullseye is the greenish label on white can.
    If so, maybe a 50-50 ratio?

    Whenever the Tung dries, by a given method, should any very light rubbing with 0000 steel wool be done between layers, assuming that a layer always feels dry with no fingerprinting?
     
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  5. entropy

    entropy Member

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    Drying without takes more patience, but the results are worth it to me. Nothing beats a lot of thin layers of Tung oil for bring out the beauty of nice wood.
     
  6. wiscoaster

    wiscoaster Member

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    My method with tung oil is a little different, and maybe it helps speed the process, but requires multiple coats. I apply a coat, rub in well, and wait for it to just start tacking up - probably about 20 or 30 minutes depending on ambient temp and humidity. Then I take a clean rag and buff lightly to take off the excess not yet absorbed. Buff enough with rag to smooth the surface and take out tackiness. Put the article somewhere it's exposed to moving air. Wait overnight (or 12 hours at least - until dry to touch - but if oil is seen & felt on the surface, it needs to be buffed again). Any sanding or steel-wooling needing to be done after waiting. Repeat tung application the next day. Number of reps depending on condition of wood being done, usually three or more. After that and with the last layer, and the last layer only, I rub on only very, very thinly and rub in well and then let only that last layer completely dry before final buffing.

    If you want to speed the process and you're not a total purist, the Minwax Tung Oil "Finish" produces results acceptable to most people. But it's not pure tung oil. It contains drying and leveling agents.
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2020 at 10:05 AM
  7. entropy

    entropy Member

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    I suppose that would speed it up some. And 0000 steel wool would take off most of the fibers from the cloth that would stick. Might have to try that next time.
     
  8. wiscoaster

    wiscoaster Member

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    Something I learned here from another thread on a similar topic was to buff using burlap. I tried it and it works really, really good! :thumbup:
     
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  9. Drail

    Drail Member

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    I would not mix anything with tung oil unless your have very good knowledge of chemistry. You could very easily concoct a mixture that will never set up. If you don't have the patience to allow tung oil to set up and dry use a polyurethane finish or "boiled" linseed oil which has dryers already mixed in. Definitely do not mix it with Zinsser - it is a lacquer.
     
  10. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    Mix with a little japan drier if you are impatient. A little goes a long ways.

    Dont waste pure tung by mixing with varnish or whatever. Just buy tung oil varnish. Parks is a good brand but not sure if they make it anymore.

    Denim is also a great buffing material and a bit finer than burlap.
     
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  11. Project355

    Project355 Member

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    Yes. Coating thickness determines dry (cure) time. NEVER get in a hurry with finishes! Key to pure tung is many VERY thin coats. Like 8 to 20 coats thin. When so thin it will dry faster.
     
  12. herrwalther

    herrwalther Member

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    Never heard of mixing Tung Oil with mineral spirits. I have always mixed mine with Ronsonol/Zippo lighter fluid. Makes the oil last a little longer and easier to apply.
     
  13. Project355

    Project355 Member

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    Usually coat one is thinned. Better penetration. After that it really doesn't matter.
     
  14. whughett

    whughett Member

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  15. Project355

    Project355 Member

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    Their citrus solvent is the cat's patootie too.... Never used it with Tung Oil but.... have gotten their Tung Oil, and I don't doubt what they say.

    Man... Tung Oil on a sort of fattish goncalo alves Telecaster neck is the stuff dreams are made of. Just sayin!
     
  16. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    You can use odorless paint thinner in place of ronsonol/zippo/and coleman fuel. They are very similar in base composition.

    Mineral spirits can be used for almost any oil product, but generally, VMP Naphtha is better. It is a more consistent product and evaporates slightly faster. It is the recommended thinner for HVLP spraying of oil coatings and finishes.
     
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