Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some frequently asked questions related to our Tried & True products.
- Can I use your finish for making my own pigmented stains?
- Are there any cases where I can use T&T outdoors?
- Is Tried & True Non-Allergenic?
- Can I use Tried & True on oil paintings and earthen floors
- Can I use Tried & True over shellac/polyurethane/wood fillers/wax-based finishes
- Are your finishes “heat-proof”?
- Are your finishes “waterproof”?
- How do I dispose of the oil covered rags after I am done?
- How do I clean surfaces finished with Tried & True?
- Do I need to wear gloves when using Tried & True?
- What is the coverage rate of Tried & True finishes?
- Can you use Tried & True wood finishes to finish hardwood floors?
- I’ve heard that linseed oils are not safe for food contact. Is that the case with your products?
- I’ve heard that using linseed oil makes the cure time much longer, sometimes weeks to cure just one coat. Is that true with your products?
- Is there a shelf life to your products?
- Can your products be diluted with a solvent or citrus solvent?
- Can I use your products on outdoor furniture or as a deck stain?
- Can I apply Tried & True with a brush?
- Should I heat up the finish before trying to apply it?
- Can I use Tried & True Wood Finishes in combination with each other?
- Can I use Tried & True to finish anything besides wood?
- Can I use Tried & True wood finishes over-top of paints?
- Is it necessary to burnish with steel wool between coats?
- I’ve used too much product and it won’t cure… What can I do?
- Where can I find a retailer for Tried & True near me?
- Do I need to worry about ventilation when using Tried & True?
- How much finish is a “thin coat”?
- Does room temperature or humidity affect how a Tried & True finish dries?
- How often do I need to reapply, if necessary?
Yes, you can. Our Danish Oil can be used in combination with oil-based paints or pastes to create your own stains.
Let us do the hard work for you! Check out our full line of stains that are specially formulated to help protect the wood as well.
Yes – you can use Tried & True on covered patios that will not get rain or snow. If there is more direct exposure to the elements, the longevity of Tried & True products in these instances is determined by the frequency and severity of the exposure. Outdoor pieces finished with Tried & True should be inspected regularly and have the finish re-applied as needed.
We use all natural ingredients with no additives, but consult with a medical professional with a copy of our Safety Data Sheet (available at the bottom of each product’s page) if you have extreme allergies to oils (flax, beeswax, pine).
Yes you can use Tried & True to over oil paintings and earthen floors. For the best protection, we recommend using our Varnish Oil.
Shellacs – Tried & True products are compatible with shellac used as sanding sealer. Do not mix them together, generally Shellac is used as a pore filler, sanded down, and then Tried & True over top for the finishing coat.
Polyurethanes – Tried & True Stain + Finish, Danish Oil, and Varnish Oil are compatible as a base coat under oil-based polyurethanes only. T&T Danish Oil can be mixed with oil-based poly as well. Old polyurethane finishes can be sanded down to bare wood, leaving the poly in the pores as a filler.
Wood Filler – Tried & True products are compatible with most wood fillers. We recommend using either oil-based or “stainable” fillers that can absorb our oils for proper curing. Epoxy fills will not absorb our products but, our products will absorb into the wood surrounding the fill with no issue.
Wax-Based Finishes – Any Tried & True product can be polished with a paste wax, or turners can use a Beall system to add a high-gloss. Please allow a few extra days for the oil to fully cure before sealing with a wax.
Our finishes have a higher flash point than wood, which means that the wood will get damaged before the finish will when exposed to high heat. We recommend using coasters or trivets when setting hot items on surface such as coffee mugs, casserole dishes, or pots to ensure maximum wood protection.
Our finishes are considered water-resistant, but not waterproof. We recommend the surfaces are kept dry at most times. The surface can get wet as long as it is dried off in a reasonable time.
Place all oily rags in a jar or bucket of water. Then store in a plastic bag/bucket, seal and dispose of them in the garbage. DO NOT LEAVE OILY SOAKED RAGS OUT WITHOUT DISPOSING OF THEM PROPERLY. If you leave a rag soaked with linseed oil out, the rag will begin to oxidize and heat up, leading to a risk of spontaneous combustion if left for a long time with an adequate heat source. Avoid this by having a water-filled jar or bucket ready with you while you are working for disposal.
We recommend using Murphy’s Oil Soap or other wood-specific cleaners for surfaces that are finished with Tried & True. Do not use mineral oil-based polishes/conditioners before or after applying Tried & True.
No, our finishes are completely 100% safe for skin and food contact. You do not need the added protection of gloves to apply our finishes. Linseed oil-based products can cause mild skin dryness so, if you are sensitive to drying, wearing liquid-proof gloves is perfectly fine.
The coverage rate for all our finishes is about a minimum of 1000 square feet per gallon, however, results may vary depending upon the type of wood. Remember to APPLY AS THINLY AS POSSIBLE A little bit goes a long way.
Yes you can finish hardwood floors with Tried & True. For the easiest application, follow these floor finishing instructions.
13. I’ve heard that linseed oils are not safe for food contact. Is that the case with your products?
Tried & True linseed oils are safe for food contact. There are a variety of ways to process linseed oil from the dried seeds of the flax plant, and one should not confuse “boiled” linseed oil with “polymerized” linseed oil. Most producers of boiled linseed are not boiling the oil at all. They are simply adding metallic driers to their blends to artificially speed up the dry time of the oil. Metallic driers such as cobalt and manganese are known carcinogens. We use “polymerized” linseed oil in our blends which do not contain metallic driers, solvents, or VOC’s. For more information, visit our environmental standards page.
14. I’ve heard that using linseed oil makes the cure time much longer, sometimes weeks to cure just one coat. Is that true with your products?
This is not true. There is a misconception in our industry that the more finish you use, the better it will look. Our products are meant to be applied at VERY THIN applications, and the number one reason for a long cure time is oversaturation of oil in to the wood. See the products page for detailed application instructions.
There is no known shelf life to any of our products. As long as the container is sealed up, the product inside will be good. Sometimes a thin skin-like layer can develop on the surface of the oil because of oxygen exposure. The skin-like layer can be scooped off, and the remaining oil is safe to use.
We do not recommend diluting our products but, yes it can be done. Diluting can compromise the integrity and food contact safety of our products as well as lead to over-absorption and curing issues.
Generally, decks have a lot of UV and precipitation exposure – refer to FAQ #2.
No, all of our finishes are meant to be hand applied with a lint-free cloth. This ensures that you do not overuse the product and will allow you to extend the coverage rate to 3x industry standards. Our products are over 100% solids, most solvent-based products are only 5-30%. While the coats are thin, it will cure to a tough and durable finish that will protect and last for years if applied properly.
Our finishes and application instructions are designed for use at room temperature. It is not recommended to heat the product up. In fact, a heated T&T oil may easily oversaturate the wood you are working with, which will significantly impact curing time.
Yes, there are many added benefits to layering our products. You can use the darkening effects of the Danish Oil, the scratch resistance of the Varnish Oil and the liquid protection of the Original Wood Finish all on the same project. However, it is imperative to know that once the Original Wood Finish is applied, the only other finish that will bond to it is another wax based finish. If you try to apply a non-wax based finish on top of the Original Wood Finish, it will result in the top layer gumming up and never developing a good bond. Avoid products that contain mineral oil, which slowly degrades natural oil finishes.
The Original Wood Finish should always be your last product applied when using our products in series. The correct order of application is Stain + Finish, then Danish Oil, then Varnish Oil, lastly Original Wood Finish.
Generally speaking, we make wood finishes and only test our products for finishing wood. However, we have talked to many people over the years that used our products in other areas of creativity & construction such as: earthen floor compaction, wrought or cast iron protection/blackening, concrete sealing and oil-painting glazing. If you have a project that calls for a traditional use of linseed oil, then one of our products will likely fit the bill.
Tried & True finishes will work over any oil-based paint, milk paint, or chalk paints to help protect and beautify the project. Milk paints help to create the same colonial look prevalent during the 18th century and are a great compliment to Tried & True’s rustic feel. You cannot apply Tried & True over acrylic paints!
We highly recommend this step. Burnishing with 0000 steel, or equivalent brass or synthetic, wool will bring out a more vibrant sheen from the wood and help to highlight the grain while polishing the wood finish to a smooth texture. Burnishing between coats also helps oxygenate the oil, enabling a faster, more even curing.
Take a deep breath, you haven’t ruined your wood piece. Some wood types are just more porous than others, which means that T&T oils will saturate them more so than usual. If it is still oily after a day, buff it dry with a clean cloth again. If the finish is tacky or there is build-up above the surface of the wood, burnish the piece again with 4/0 equivalent steel/brass/synthetic wool and wait another day.
No, Tried & True does not contain any solvents or VOC’s so you do not need to worry about toxic fumes.
A gauge for this is to apply just enough to cause a dry-to-wet color shift in the wood without making it look “wet” with oil. Start by taking a small dab in the corner of a lint free cloth and work from the center of the wood out towards the corner. Our founder Joe Robson always said, “If you’ve used any, you’ve used enough.” Remember to also buff the piece dry after the recommended time on each product’s label.
Yes, both temperature and humidity will affect cure times. Generally speaking, the colder the temperature and higher the humidity, the longer the cure time. Our estimated cure times are based on applications at room temperature with normal humidity levels.
Once finished and cured, you may never have to reapply it again. We have projects that are over 30 years old that have never had to be refinished. Our formulas are meant to become more protective and durable over time. However, we understand that there are some items like cutting boards or wood floors that may get more wear and tear than something like a rocking chair. If you have a wood surface finished with a T&T product that looks like it needs some love, simply burnish with your preferred 4/0 (ultra-fine) wool and reapply. More severe damages may require sanding the area with your final grit first, then reapplying.