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I know what you really want. One finish with one coat with bombproof protection and a gaw-dang-that’s-awesome sheen. 

Sorry, doesn’t exist. But I’ve got a really good second-place effort when it comes to putting a gorgeous finish on your walnut woodworking project. 

The Super-Simple Dark Walnut Recipe


Black Walnut Danish Oil
1 coat

High Performance Waterbased Topcoat
2+ coats

Increasingly the world inches toward water-based wood finishes. It’s all thanks to a casserole of government regulation and consumer demand for safety and easy clean up. 

Sadly, water-based wood finishes lack a certain classic je ne se quoi delivered by oil based finishes. Especially on walnut woodworking projects. Oil-based wood finishes give a kiss of warm color and kick the natural contrast in woods into high gear. 

That’s the good part. 

The bad part is that oil finishes fume with carcinogenic and flammable ingredients. 

SO NOT COOL. But it is what it is. Wear a respirator, use nitrile gloves and keep things tidy and you’ll be okay. 

While oil finishes lend a warmth and depth to dark woods like walnut, ol’ Uncle Sam is clamping down on the ingredients that make them special. Understandably so. 

But until the day they pry my oil finishes from my cold, dead hands, here’s a really good combination of oil and water that will make your walnut project stand out, look beautiful, and give it a nearly bombproof clear coating. 

The dark Danish oil gives the wood a wonderful punch in color, while the water based topcoat is crystal clear and super durable. So, arguably, you get the best of both worlds. 

Watch the vid for the details, post your questions and commentary as you see fit.

We’ll answer. 

Vice President of Operations – Woodworkers Source
We’re a family-owned lumber & woodworking supply retailer with 3 delightful stores in Arizona, and 35 friendly employees.
Mark oversees the company and creates tutorials on wood finishing and woodworking tips for hardwood lumber.


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