A quick tip I thought I’d share. I prefer a finish leaning towards the matte side of semi-gloss. I use nylon abrasive pads for cutting between coats of varnish but I prefer the look I achieve by using 0000 steel wool when rubbing out the final coat.
Steel wool leaves fine steel dust on the dulcimer that needs to be cleaned up.
First I vacuum the dulcimer and bench. I follow this by placing a strong magnet inside a rubber glove, a plastic bag, a paper towel or whatever ever I have at hand. I gently move this assemblage over the surface of the dulcimer and pick up the dust left by the steel wool. Then I switch to a tack cloth to grab any steel particles that may still remain.
The rubber glove , plastic bag, paper towel or poodle I used to wrap the magnet gets thrown away and I am left with a clean magnet that is ready for its next adventure.
4 thoughts on “Steel Wool, A Magnet, A Rubber Glove And A Dulcimer”
Steel wool is used for rubbing out finishes. For working bare wood I use scrapers and sandpaper. Very fine steel wool removes minor imperfections and evens out a layer of finish. It also produces a nice matte look.
I have used steel wool directly on very hard, resinous woods like ebony on occasion but most woodworkers use it on the finish.
Trying to understand the use of steel wool a little better. Is it still widely used or is sandpaper/sponge much more popular? What provides a better finish for woodworking?
I use and love micro-fiber cloths. They are what I use for tack cloths. I try to keep them from getting to loaded up with gunk so that is why I use a magnet first. I tend to do open pore finishes and between the magnet and the micro fiber cloth i get the pores very clean!
Do you use micro-fiber cloths?
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