Tuesday, January 16, 2018
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Articles Of Interest To Woodworkers


Leaf Divider

This collection of articles is my response to the many requests I received over the years that I was privileged to serve as the host of the WOOD Magazine Finishing & Refinishing Forum to write a book.  I did that once (albeit in another discipline) and, for a host of reasons, I have vowed never to do it again.  Past experience aside, in my view the last thing woodworkers need is another book on the subject of finishing.  We are already blessed with two excellent books on finishing that more than adequately address the needs of virtually all hobbyist and professional woodworkers.  The first, long out of print but well worth finding, is Adventures in Wood Finishing by George Frank.  The second, Understanding Wood Finishing, written by Bob Flexner, now in its second edition, should be required reading before even opening a can of finish.  Other books abound but the reader will be hard-pressed to find anything in any of them that adds to the body of knowledge contained in these two.

So, setting aside the idea of publishing a hard copy book but still acknowledging your requests, I have decided that a more effective and responsive approach will be to compile and expand upon a series of articles, most of which evolved over time in response to questions on the WOOD Magazine Finishing & Refinishing Forum.  I make no claim that what you read here advances anything new.  In fact, any contribution I might make will be in helping the reader focus on things already known that have been obscured by the hype, misrepresentations and outright distortions so common in the world of marketing finishes.  I would also hope to dispel some of the cult-like myths attendant to preparation, selection and application of finishes.       

I have resisted the temptation to refer to this collection of articles as an online book.  First, that description would be incredibly pretentious.  More to the point, these articles simply represent my experience over nearly 50-years of applying finishes to my projects, both as a hobbyist and as a small shop professional woodworker.  If you want a complete treatment of the subject I encourage you to add the previously mentioned publications to your library.  

Finally, I welcome your comments and your suggestions.  Almost everything here, as I said earlier, has grown out of answers to questions.  This format gives you the option to comment (ask questions) on an article; or, you can reach me by email here.  New material will usually be added on my blog.   Thank you for visiting this website...I look forward to hearing from you.

Steve Mickley 

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