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Plug Building - Got Wood? Got Plug?

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Old 10-11-2019, 06:39 PM   #1
pbadad
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Maple sealing , again.

I have an abundance of maple scrap from work. All 3/4" - 1 1/14". I need wood but always prefer birch. I plan to do my array of needles and a new version. I've sealed a few with e tex epoxy. Messy as hell. I also heated wood and epoxy. Thinning e tex has been noted on other forums to not be that good do to evaporation and actual epoxy not penetrating. Had occasional cracking at hook hole. No grommet so it's not from scratching the wood with the insertion of grommet. Is this the nature of the beast. Win a few and lose a few?
I guess I'm looking for an alternative sealer or a surer way to get a better penetration with e tex..

Billy D.
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Old 10-12-2019, 07:09 AM   #2
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I havenít been building very long but I do the helmsman spar urethane cut with mineral spirits in a tennis ball container and soak the plugs in the solution over night let drip dry light scuff and do it again. Prime paint then have switched over to a two part automotive aerosol for clear coating has not failed me yet with needles and metal lips on plugs I have used for several years. I just hate e Tex but thatís my personal preference. I know some guys on here use a similar product to e Tex but the name escapes me. Hopefully someone else chimes in. Also hope the Sunday am plug building talk starts back up this winter Iíve learned so much from reading that

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Old 10-12-2019, 01:45 PM   #3
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My go to is helmsman and pure turps but with maple, cracking has occurred.
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Old 10-13-2019, 01:04 PM   #4
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Iíve heard of a lot of maple splitting but honestly have not seen it first hand. I have a friend with a sawmill in wmass and get a lot of maple and ash and birch from him which a large majority of it has been dried in a solar kiln is it just that a soft hardwood like maple expands and contracts so much that causes this
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Old 10-14-2019, 08:20 AM   #5
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I've been using tung oil for sealing for many years now, I've never had a split plug or issues with my primer/paint adhesion.

A good run is better than a bad stand!
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Old 10-14-2019, 01:26 PM   #6
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Joe have u sealed maple with success using tung oil
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Old 10-15-2019, 08:15 AM   #7
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Joe have u sealed maple with success using tung oil
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absolutely, it's all I've used for quite a few years now, I haven't had any issues with birch or maple, I had good luck with 60/40
BLO and mineral spirits, the only issue I ever had was paint bleed ..

when sealing maple and birch, I warm the blanks in a 200 degree toaster oven prior to their dunk, not sure how much difference it makes but it seems to help.. I also dip maple and birch plugs in primer, I use a wire and poke the paint through to make sure the primer goes all the way through the drilled holes, it's extra work but again, it affords a little extra protection.

tung oil was used to seal wooden ships so I figured if it's good enough for that, why not use it as a plug sealer, its not cheap but these days I only make a few plugs a year so it works perfectly fine for my purpose..

A good run is better than a bad stand!
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Old 10-15-2019, 12:06 PM   #8
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Thanks Joe for the info. I have had no.issues with birch and spar mix but i will use tung oil on maple. What mix ratio u use with tung oil?
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Old 10-17-2019, 06:49 AM   #9
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Thanks Joe for the info. I have had no.issues with birch and spar mix but i will use tung oil on maple. What mix ratio u use with tung oil?
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I just add a small amount of mineral spirits ( maybe 10 to 15%), it's pretty thin anyway..

A good run is better than a bad stand!
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Old 10-17-2019, 07:10 AM   #10
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Again thanks Joe. I vary soak length with soft and hard woods. What soak time seems to work for u?
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Old 10-20-2019, 05:25 PM   #11
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Joe I just read a post of yours from 2010 on sealing w/tung oil. You mentioned a blend version. Are you currently using the blend version or straight tung oil cut with mineral spirits? Does this mix with either take more than a day to dry prior to priming?

Billy D.
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Old 10-25-2019, 06:27 PM   #12
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Drill the hook holes in maple plugs parallel to, rather than across, the grain lines.
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Old 10-26-2019, 06:39 AM   #13
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George funny u say that. Because of a little design change I did just that. Thanks.
I have a little Val oil left. Never issues with other woods but never sealed maple w/Val oil. Do u think it would help with cracking?
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Old 11-03-2019, 06:11 AM   #14
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I just stick to spinning AYC. No sealing required and I adjust the water column depth with lead weighting.

No boat, back in the suds.
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