Coverage, Cure Time, Care and Cleaning, Health and Environmental Safety,
Waterlox is one of the older tung oil formulated brand names and is an excellent choice for someone looking for
repair-ability over scuff resistance.
Conceptually, it's a hybrid. Tung oil purists scoff at the amount of solvent in it.
So, as a tung oil "modified" varnish, let's say, it hits the happy medium for folks who
like the pour and spread workability of a poly or varnish, but don't want the plastic look.
Who rather love the idea of a natural oil finish,
but desire more sheen.
Many floor owners simply equate sheen with clean
and dull with dirt. Right, wrong, or indifferent...
This manufacturer makes satin and high gloss.
As you can see, satin is NOT flat.
- Touch ups tend to blend in better
- Panelization does not occur
Tung oil, which is from the nut of the Chinawood Tree, is way too thick to penetrate wood without being thinned.
But when it is thinned, usually with mineral spirits and/or naphtha, it replenishes and rejuvenates dry wood.
Like polyurethanes, this finish is applied as a coating, poured and pulled evenly, one coat at a time.
The first two coats usually penetrate, the next one or two start to achieve a protective wear layer and sheen over the wood.
Tung Oil is naturally amber, even moreso than petroleum. For custom colors it can be applied over oil based stains,
but do keep in mind that the natural color of tung oil nicely picks up, what I call, the ambient colors of any room.
Health & Environmental
It's a world of trade-off's, isn't it? Tung oil is natural, no VOC. But to get it into your antique wood floor and extend its lifecycle...
...you have to thin it with solvents. Generally, nasty!
This manufacturer's original recipes were always known for strong odor and slow cure, but good for long life-cycles.
Recent 350 and 450 VOC grams/liter formulations still smell more than our easily offended snoots can handle,
and still don't comply with the regs of the CARB, (California Air Resource Board,) and the OTC, (Ozone Transport Commission,)
even though OSHA is satisfied in those jurisdictions.
Consequently, quart-size containers might be all that's available in your region since there still remains an exemption
for the transport of small quantities, as far as I know.
Here in the Twin Cities, I might still be able to scrounge a few gallon cans of the original formula if you need some.
Just let me know. The last note on VOC is that, according to the manufacturer, the original formula can go over the newer formulas, but do not put the newer formulas over the old.
(I am talking about consecutive coats, here, within days of each other. Old finish is inert when cured, so there is no problem coating your ten year old floor with new product, for example.)
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