Waterlox for Counter Tops
#11
  
Looking for some help.  My daughter is going to install maple butcher block counter tops.  She is leaning towards using Waterlox for the finish.  She wants a food safe finish but not something that she will have to constantly reapply.  Does anyone have any first-hand experience or alternative recommendations?  Can the waterlox be tinted? Thanks for the help.

Lonnie
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#12
  Re: Waterlox for Counter Tops by Mr Eddie ([size=medium][font=C...)
I used Waterlox in a rarely used bedroom for the floors.  It looks great.  I have been told that it is not as durable as poly.

I used oil based poly (4 coats, gloss) on my butcherblock counters. That would be six years ago.  They still look fine.  A light scuffing and I could add another coat to dress it up.

The key is to allow the finish to fully cure (10 to 14 days) before putting it to use.  And to note that you have to use cutting boards.  You cannot cut directly on this finish. 

Even if you use a water based poly you want to allow it to fully cure or it will scratch or worse, items left in place for a while will "glue" themselves to the finish.
No animals were injured or killed in the production of this post.
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#13
  Re: Waterlox for Counter Tops by Mr Eddie ([size=medium][font=C...)
(08-03-2020, 07:58 PM)Mr Eddie Wrote: Looking for some help.  My daughter is going to install maple butcher block counter tops.  She is leaning towards using Waterlox for the finish.  She wants a food safe finish but not something that she will have to constantly reapply.  Does anyone have any first-hand experience or alternative recommendations?  Can the waterlox be tinted? Thanks for the help.

Lonnie

You can tint Waterlox and other OB finishes with oil soluble dyes from WD Lockwood and others.  

As long as no one cuts on the counter tops, or puts a screaming hot pan directly on them, Waterlox will work well.  

John
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#14
  Re: RE: Waterlox for Counter Tops by jteneyck ([quote='Mr Eddie' pi...)
(08-04-2020, 08:31 AM)jteneyck Wrote: You can tint Waterlox and other OB finishes with oil soluble dyes from WD Lockwood and others.  

As long as no one cuts on the counter tops, or puts a screaming hot pan directly on them, Waterlox will work well.  

John

But note that the cure time for Waterlox is 30 to 90 days during which you should be careful not to leave any heavy objects on it and be careful about scratching.

Oil based poly needs about 200 hours normally but can take as long as 30 days for a "full cure".  But note from my experience the finish continues to harden over time and my 20 year old project coated with oil based poly is harder than than the finish on my one year old finish. 

But I find that 7 to 10 days is enough time for a finish to be hard enough to use. 

I have less experience with waterbased poly, but I think it is very similar to the cure times for oil based.
No animals were injured or killed in the production of this post.
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#15
  Re: RE: Waterlox for Counter Tops by Cooler ([quote='jteneyck' pi...)
(08-05-2020, 09:09 AM)Cooler Wrote: But note that the cure time for Waterlox is 30 to 90 days during which you should be careful not to leave any heavy objects on it and be careful about scratching.

Oil based poly needs about 200 hours normally but can take as long as 30 days for a "full cure".  But note from my experience the finish continues to harden over time and my 20 year old project coated with oil based poly is harder than than the finish on my one year old finish. 

But I find that 7 to 10 days is enough time for a finish to be hard enough to use. 

I have less experience with waterbased poly, but I think it is very similar to the cure times for oil based.

Waterbornes generally reach 95% cure in 7 - 10 days.  And you can normally put them into light duty service in 2 or 3 days.  Much faster all around than oil based varnish.  

John
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#16
  Re: RE: Waterlox for Counter Tops by jteneyck ([quote='Cooler' pid=...)
(08-05-2020, 07:28 PM)jteneyck Wrote: Waterbornes generally reach 95% cure in 7 - 10 days.  And you can normally put them into light duty service in 2 or 3 days.  Much faster all around than oil based varnish.  

John

I do two different hardness tests on finishes.  The first one is the thumbnail test where I scrape the surface with my thumbnail.  After two days I cannot scratch the finish but I can make a slight indentation with my thumbnail.

The second, and much tougher test is the "penny" test.  I scrape the edge of a penny over the finish.  A week old finish will generally not scratch but again I can see an indentation where I scraped the penny.

A year old finish will not show that indentation. 

It is my guess that the curing is not linear.  The major portion of the cure occurs in the first 7 to 10 days.  At that point it is probably 70 - 80 percent cured.  The remainder of the cure occurs over a much longer time, with the lower coats curing much slower than the top coats.  I think it is 90%+ cured after 6 or 8 months.  But it continues to harden over the years. 

In any event, Waterlox cures  much slower than oil based, and according to your information oil based cures slower than water based. 

I like a sealed counter.  It requires very little maintenance--none so far for 5 or 6 years. 

Can you seal a countertop with Waterlox?  I think you can.  Is it the best option?  I don't think it is.
No animals were injured or killed in the production of this post.
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#17
  Re: Waterlox for Counter Tops by Mr Eddie ([size=medium][font=C...)
i have some walnut and sapele countertops in my house - the kitchen is stone, but other rooms has these woods.  on the walnut, i used arm-r-seal.  for the sapele, i only use waterlox.  it's absolutely durable enough for a light-use counter, and, it's "renewable" in-place if you damage it.  waterlox on mahogany/sapele is a perfect fit IMHO, but i'm not a huge fan of it on walnut as it's a little too orange.  i prefer arm-r-seal for walnut.  all of the tops look spectacular and have held up fine.

if i were to do it again, i would probably use a hardwax oil, specifically odie's.  i like the slight sheen of the multiple coats of waterlox, whereas odie's tends to be more matte.  but, with high-grit sanding and buffing, you can get a bit of a sheen with odie's.  that would be my choice if i were to do it over, but back when i made these tops i didn't know of odie's.  now that i have experience with it and have used it for other projects, i think i would have used it extensively in place of other products in my own home.

--- dz
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#18
  Re: RE: Waterlox for Counter Tops by Cooler ([quote='jteneyck' pi...)
Cooler, Waterlox is an oil based varnish, just like Arm-R-Seal, MinWax, etc.  The only difference with Waterlox is that the resin is phenolic based, whereas Arm-R-Seal and many others is urethane.  P&L 38 uses an alkyd resin.  There are lots of options but those three are used in most commercial oil based varnishes.  

Cure time for every product is different and you are right that Waterlox takes a long time before it full hardens.  

John
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#19
  Re: Waterlox for Counter Tops by Mr Eddie ([size=medium][font=C...)
Osmo.

Only way to fly.
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#20
  Re: RE: Waterlox for Counter Tops by Cabinet Monkey (Osmo. Only way to...)
(08-11-2020, 09:06 PM)Cabinet Monkey Wrote: Osmo.

Only way to fly.

I have not used Osmo, but I have read it is food-safe and a fairly hard finish.  It would allow the counter top to be used as a cutting board. 

What I am not clear on, is if you are not going to use the counter as a cutting board, will the Osmo be as hard wearing as oil based poly.  Can you go 6 or more years without re-coating.  My oil based finish is 6 years old and is not ready for a new topcoat.  (I use separate cutting boards for cutting.)
No animals were injured or killed in the production of this post.
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