Saturday, April 16, 2011

Mess-Free Varnish Applicator Pads

I'm a big fan of the Wood Whisperer DVD where Marc Spagnuolo explains his wiping varnish technique.  If I remember correctly, Marc suggests old T-shirts as the material of choice for making the applicator pads.  Well, I'm still wearing my old T-shirts, thank you very much, so I decided to try paper towels instead.

I was a little bit worried that the paper towels would fall apart fairly quickly and leave fuzz and lint in the finish.  As luck would have it, though, they didn't.  A lot of that probably has to do with the brand (Bounty) that I'm using.  For the record, I haven't tried any other brands to see if they might be better or worse.

The Bounty towels come in sheets that are 11" long and 6" wide.  I stack two of these sheets on top of each other, then fold them in half twice the long way to make a pad that's 6" long and 2-3/4" wide.  Then I fold that in half twice the other way so the end result is 2-3/4" long, 1-1/2" wide, and about 1/2" thick.

Finally, I stick the whole thing in one of those black, heavy-duty binder clips.  The binder clip keeps the pad all folded up and makes it very easy to control.  And best of all, the handles mean you don't have to hold the sticky, varnish-soaked pad with your fingers.

This trick works best if the pad is just a little wider than the binder clip, so that the pad is supported by the clip along its full width.  If you want a wider pad than the one described, you can fold the paper towel differently and then use a couple of popsicle sticks to increase the effective width of the clip.

1 comment:

Noddie1 said...

great idea with the clip and again with the popsicle stick. I'll be sure to give that a try

Post a Comment