Internet Horology Club 185
December 19, 2014, 21:27Mario DeRogatis
Anyone have any suggestions on what kind of oil to use on the wood of an old mantel clock. I would like to bring out some of the luster of the wood while cleaning off the dust without damaging the wood.
December 22, 2014, 00:17Paul D. Trombley
I would float around in the clock section, pocket watch section... several of the guys have talked about refreshing clock cases, crystal cabinets, tool boxes...
Personally, I am a fan of boiled linseed oil. Some have tried wiping the cabinet with a cotton rag dampened with thinner....
It really depends on what the original finish is and what kind of condition it is in.
It could be as simple as a wipe down with Old English furniture polish.
Just keep playing with search words in the, "Find-Or Search_ pull down, until you find a combination that triggers a few returns.
December 22, 2014, 00:26Paul D. Trombley
This one has some mention of 0000 steel wool and lanolin hand cleaner...https://ihc185.infopop.cc/eve/f...793923387#9793923387
December 22, 2014, 10:26Lorne Wasylishen
Take an old T shirt and some mineral spirits/paint thinner and wipe it down to clean it.(Odorless paint thinner is available)
All due respect to Paul, avoid any abrasives, you will find that fervent rubbing with the T shirt and spirits will abrade to some degree giving a soft glow.
Then apply a couple coats of wax.
Any other finish/topcoat will be non reversible.
You can remove the wax every year or so with thinner and re-wax or re-apply wax over the old coats. Wax will pick up a little dust and grime over time and acquire a patina of it's own.
Anything other than wax cannot be removed without removing the original finish.
Watco makes pigmented as well as clear waxes. Do not use Watco Danish oil as it is a finish, not a wax.
December 22, 2014, 14:31Paul D. Trombley
Thank you Lorne for summing it up.
December 22, 2014, 15:15Billy Kuhn
Go to the Harley Davidson shop. They have a cleaner that is used to clean Plexiglas windshields. The one that is in the blue bottle has a fine grit in the cleaner. Use that and it will clean the mantel clock very good. it will bring it out to a high shine as it is removing the old wax and dirt.
December 23, 2014, 08:10Mario DeRogatis
Thanks for the suggestions. I think I will stay away from the abrasives and try the Old English polish first, probably on the back. The wood itself is in nice condition and I just want to spruce it up. Thanks again and Happy Holidays.
December 23, 2014, 09:48Dave Turner
Here's what I did to my Seth Thomas Lobby, (with GoJo and 0000 steel wool). The lower left corner is where I started, and was amazed to find the original finish under the old dirty brown grime.
It might be considered to be abrasive, but 0000 is very soft and can't hurt the finish, in my opinion:
December 23, 2014, 09:50Dave Turner
And here it is, finished.
December 23, 2014, 13:19Lorne Wasylishen
Well Dave, I can't argue with the visual results but I stay away from abrasives.
December 23, 2014, 16:15Dave Turner
How about posting a picture of what we're talking about?
December 24, 2014, 00:12Mario DeRogatis
Very nice, I have one clock that this may benefit from as it is much darker. Did you put any type of coating after buffing off the old grime.
December 24, 2014, 09:47Dave Turner
After cleaning, I did use a little paste wax on it.
March 03, 2015, 20:11David E. Booth, Jr.
When I was working for Mr. Devilbiss, we cleaned several firearms for the Smithsonian Institution. He said it is acceptable to GENTLY!!! use four 0 steel wool on wood, but immediately follow it with a thorough cleaning with a tack cloth, before applying any wax (or linseed oil, depending on the original finish)because steel wool leaves microscopic pieces of steel in the wood grain, which will eventually rust, and cause speckling. I have followed that advice with clock cases, as well.