July 2007


President's corner

Next meeting

Last meeting


This 'n That


Last Meeting

Bill Henzel kicked off our June meeting with an announcement that a third item will be added to our short presentations. We have Tool & Tech Talks and now we'll have a Movie or Book Review. Not movies like Surf's Up (a penguin surfboarder) but subjects related to woodworking. If you have a good one, please contact, Frank Ramsay at frankramsay8@aol.com or 415 495-7002 or a Tool or Tech Talk you would like to present.

Stan Booker our Rafflemeister showed two Figured Maple boards. Remember, tickets are $1 per or 6 for $5. The Door prizes featured Frank Taylor's elaborate push stick, Gorilla glue, a Japan Woodworker's gift card and the 25th Anniversary T-shirt.

Bill then talked about our application for IRS 501(c)(3) Tax Exempt Status. IRS wanted us to add some wording to our By Laws. The Board approved the addition and now the membership must vote on the changes. The text is on our web site in red. There will be a very short Special Meeting before our regularly scheduled meeting on July 19th to discuss and vote on the matter. We are applying for this exemption because many organizations require this to rent meeting space and it will also help to get better insurance.

Per Madsen, our Program Chair outlined our future meeting schedule. In August we'll have our perennial favorite and member, Yeung Chan. September will be a shop Visit to Joe Brown's Distinctive Woodworking shop in San Carlos. October is open and November will be our Annual Jigs, Fixtures and Box Contest.


Per also announced that Yeung Chan's class on Woodworking Tools and Machine Joints given at the College of the Redwoods on 7/9 to 7/20 is still open. Per also said that Yeung is willing to do a 2-day seminar on Machine Joinery if there is enough interest. There was a sign up sheet of members who showed an interest passed around. Contact Per for details at permads@comcast.net or 415 928-4509.

Neal White talked about a one day Using a Hand Plane class on 6/23 and also 7/21, 10 am-6 pm at the Sawdust Shop. Cost will be $100.

Stan Booker brought some small wood samples of woods from Africa. A person he knows is trying to market these woods. Some examples: Bubinga at $7.50/BF and Paduk at $7/BF.

Mark Ferraro needs help with his outside Redwood window trim of his Craftsman style home.

Bruce Woods announced that a co-worker wants a French Style TV cabinet built to match an existing one.

Arnold Champagne has a pair of Corbels for sale. For details for all of the above, see the CLASSIFIED section of the newsletter.

Frank Taylor gave a Tool Talk on a straight edge he developed to do dados with a router. The tool was made from thick Lucite stock to which was glued a thinner clear acrylic sheet which was the straight edge. To true up the straight edge, run the router to trim the edge then turn the router 180 degrees and do it again. A very ingenious device which was also in the door prize loot.

A Finish Sander donated by Glenn Krueg was the Silent Auction item. There was silence so the sander went home.

Show & Tell

Fred Reicher showed a Maple drop leaf table which he is matching to an existing one. He wrestled the Maple away from Arnie Champagne. The gate legs were on a wooden hinge which didn't work out using the instructions and he had to improvise. The legs were turned and had a series of coves or "scallops". He bought these but wants to make his own with the matching wood. First, he has to buy a lathe, tools and then learn to turn. The finish was Miniwax Wipe On which dries in 5 minutes.

Bill called a break as the mob headed for the Mint Brownies baked by our Head Baker, Fred Reicher of our Baking Division. There was also a Danish Coffee Cake brought by our Assistant Baker, Danish Division, Per Madsen.

Main Presentation

Greg Bruge who does antiquing, one of a kind custom furniture and is an expert on finishing was our presenter. He also teaches wood finishing. On the table in front of him must held over 30 types of finishes plus vials of different color dyes and stains. He first mentioned three very informative books. Two by Jeff Jewitt, Great Wood Finishes also Finishing. Also Bob Flexner's book, Understanding Wood Finishes.

He first talked about color and its definition. Color is a single wavelength or a mixture of different wavelengths in the visible region of the wavelength spectrum. Paints and stains are not consistent batch to batch or between manufacturers whereas artists' colors are very consistent since they are linked to a Spectrometer and have very distinct wave lengths. So in using commercial dyes and stains, one has to check the color before using the product. Hue is the name given to a family of colors. For instance red is a hue whereas cardinal red is a color. The value of a color is the darkness of a color. Intensity is the degree of a color. Warm colors are those colors which make us feel warm when we look at them, such as red, orange, and yellow. Cool colors are those that make us feel cool when we look at them, such as green, blue, and violet.

Black is added to a color to darken it. To lighten a color you dilute the paint or stain with solvent. If you add white to a color it becomes pastel.

A pigment stain is one consisting of large particles. This type of stain tends to lie on top of the wood filling voids and does not become darker when a second coat is applied to the wood. A pigment stain is usually in a petroleum distillate base. A dye stain consists of very small particles that more evenly coats the wood surface. When successive coats of dye stain are put on the wood, the surface continues to darken. Dye stains are usually mixed with water or alcohol and will often say dye stain on the container if premixed. Dyes are also brighter than pigment stains. He then talked about layering of stains, dyes and finish to get different colors and brightness.

To ebonize wood you can use a black dye or soak steel wool that does not have oil on it in vinegar and then use as a stain. The steel wool in vinegar mixture remains dark for about six months but then tends to lighten and become grayer.

Wood has color. When you add color, the color of the board influences the final color and it is almost impossible to control. For Cherry, he recommends sanding it first. Then keep it in light for about a week. At this point the color of the board won't change much and you can start coating it with the colors of your choice.

Greg likes shellac and he explained that it is a secretion of the Lac insect. He then described how it is made. He showed different grades of shellac. The grades are achieved by stopping or extending the process in making it will give different grades. There is dark and light shellac. It usually comes in flake form and is mixed with denatured alcohol. Shellac can be used under or over the top of any other finish. It is excellent for sealing wood. A one pound cut of shellac is one pound of shellac mixed with one gallon of solvent whereas a four pound cut is four pounds of shellac mixed with one gallon of solvent. A dilute solution of shellac (one pound cut) can be used as a sealer to get a more uniform stain on woods that blotch when applying stain such as Cherry. First apply the sanding sealer then sand it off. The shellac sealer will stay in the wood voids. Then use whatever coating you want. Most commercial shellacs have wax in it. You can make your own without the wax.

By the end of the evening BAWA members had asked many questions regarding finishing and finishing problems and the meeting could have gone on for hours. It was a fine presentation and to be sure members were anxious to try out what they had learned on their next project.

Bruce Woods & Mark Rand