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Should I varnish or not please?

Discussion in 'Maintenance, Tinkering & Embellishment' started by Tomahawkdick., May 27, 2019.

  1. Tomahawkdick.


    Feb 15, 2019
    Just making a Bowie knife stand, and have used stag horn for the rests. As the horns were very old/dry I cleaned them, but took all the natural life out of them. Since then I watched a guy burn them with a touch and to be honest they look ok. So before I put them on the plinth should I put a few coats of varnish on them to brighten them up. Or would you suggest another way to preserve, and that could add a bit extra sparkle to them?

    Thanks you all. Richard.
    bucketstove likes this.
  2. eveled

    eveled Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 11, 2016
    Last edited: May 27, 2019
  3. davek14


    May 30, 2009
    Doesn't mineral oil soften stag? Wax of some sort might be better.
  4. Horsewright

    Horsewright KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 4, 2011
    bflying likes this.
  5. davek14


    May 30, 2009
    Nice. I've used wood hardener, and I've also used tung oil. I'm just a tinkerer, though.
  6. Bill DeShivs

    Bill DeShivs KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 6, 2000
    Mineral oil is not good for stag, nor is torching. Burnt stag is painfully obvious-and ugly.
    If your stag lacks color, potassium permanganate can be used-as in Horsewright's post.
    Leather dyes can be used, but generally penetrate too deeply
    Stag also polishes beautifully with a buffer, or even by hand.
    Once colored and polished, the stag can be clear coated with spray lacquer, or waxed with any good car wax.
    bucketstove and Ace Rimmer like this.
  7. Tomahawkdick.


    Feb 15, 2019
    Horsewright Dave. Brilliant the colour has come back with that solution they are now very nice a brown again. I'll vanish once fully dry, again thanks mate.


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