Can Constantia products be used on any timber species, solids and veneers?
Constantia organic finishes offer the greatest enhancement and protection for any species in solid and/or veneer.
How long do the products take to dry?
Because we do not add chemical dryers to our products they rely on the natural climate. Heat, friction and oxygen activate a polymerisation (drying) so in warm conditions, with good air flow, our products can dry within 30 minutes or sometimes less. We normally recommend leaving 6 – 24 hours between coats. In colder conditions, artificial heating is recommended to hasten drying time. The Chinese Wood Oil can also be warmed by placing container inside a bowl of boiling water (water capsule.) Although we recommend our product as it is, driers can be added to assist with this process. Finishes will harden further over the week/s following final application.
What is the advantage in using Chinese Wood Oil as opposed to synthetic lacquer?
Synthetic Lacquer sits on the surface of the timber whereas the Chinese Wood Oil penetrates deeply into the grain and covers the surface to form an in/on skin. As the timber expands and contracts continually the lacquer becomes more brittle and eventually crazes (cracks) and flakes under the pressure of the movement. Chinese Wood Oil however, expands and contracts with the timber and will not crack and flake. Maintenance is far easier with Chinese Wood Oil as it does not require complete removal prior to reapplication.
Are the products safe to be applied to food preparation areas?
Since 1977, Constantia products have been used on food preparation areas, children’s toys and swings with no ill effects reported.
Can I use my own thinning agents to thin Constantia products?
Constantia products should only ever be thinned using Constantia Thinners. Many years of trial and experimentation occur to create the correct compatibility for thinning our products.
Can the products be applied to outside surfaces susceptible to harsh weather exposure such as; gates, fence posts, flooring, framing and doors?
Constantia’s Organic Finishes come highly recommended for use on areas under the greatest duress. Chinese Wood Oil is particularly known as one of the longest lasting, most durable finishes on the market and is used by Flinders Ports to maintain timber and steel (substantially slowing oxidation) on their boats. Gates, fence posts, floors, doors and frames are all ideal surfaces for the tough, heat and water resistant properties of Chinese Wood Oil. Maintenance is simply conducted without the complete removal of previous coats necessary. Chinese Wood Oil can be applied to stone to preserve the natural beauty and steel to minimise oxidation substantially slowing the rusting process.
What do I do if the Chinese Wood Oil dries unevenly and appears patchy?
All timbers vary in grain size and can draw (absorb) more in some areas than others. One (or more if required) of the following options are recommended to trial:
– Wet sand with wet or dry paper (400-600 grit) and Chinese Wood Oil mixed in equal parts (50/50) with Chinese Wood Oil Thinners. This will assist to dissolve and cut the finish to flatten and fill.
– “oo” (medium) grade steel wool can also be used to cut back the surface either dry or by dipping into Chinese Wood Oil. Make sure to refresh the steel wool regularly as worn wool will not effectively cut. Wipe hard with a lint free rag. Further to this steel wool may also be dipped into an equal (or stronger if required) mix of Constantia Chinese Wood Oil Thinner and Chinese Wood Oil.
– Electric buffers with either a lambswool head or cotton pad are very effective at creating heat and friction to flatten and create an even finish and encourage penetration into the grain.
Do I need the whole range to complete each job?
The full Constantia range work in harmony to cover all your needs but each product can be used for individual applications and there will be times when only one product is required to fulfill the task at hand. Observation and personal taste determine how many coats are necessary. As our products offer the highest enhancement and protection even the smallest quantities are powerfully effective. For an ‘open-grain’ look 2 – 3 coats may be sufficient and for ‘higher sheen’ finish 3 – 8 coats may be applied. Constantia Wood Grain Filler substantially assists in filling more open grained timbers and can be applied dry over wet oil or mixed into a paste and rubbed into the grain. Applying oil with abrasives such as wet or dry paper and steel wool can assist in creating a ‘slurry’ of wood dust and oil that works very effectively as a grain filler. When the surface becomes discoloured and faded or dry looking, a light cut back can be performed and subsequent coats applied.
Our Finishing manual provides further information on all our products and we offer an experienced advisory for all email and telephone inquiries.
Our guarantee: Constantia Organic Finishes are some of the safest, easiest to apply, longest lasting and most beautiful products on the market. They are fully backed by an expert advisory and a family of esteemed clients. Constantia have been a trusted producer in Australia since 1977.
The Constantia Chinese Wood Oil, Seedlac and Lincoln Wax can be used over the top of stains and pigments to seal and protect. It is recommended that stains and pigments are applied darker than would be required as some of the colour will penetrate with the Constantia product into the grain making it lighter. Always trial using a test piece to accurately gauge desired quantity and compatibility.
Constantia Grain Filler is ideal for open grained timbers. It can be applied in the following ways;
Option 1: Sprinkle dry over freshly applied (wet) Chinese Wood Oil and/or Seedlac and rub/buff vigorously in the direction of the grain.
Option 2: Mix equal parts of Red Oil, Seedlac and Chinese Wood Oil to make a paste or slurry and apply vigorously in the direction of the grain. Wipe excess off with a clean rag.
Option 3: Useful as a fine abrasive when ‘matting off’ or ‘cutting back’ finish.
Brushes used for Chinese Wood Oil can be cleaned using Mineral Turpentine Oil. Brushes used for Seedlac can be cleaned using Methylated Spirits. Only Constantia Organic Finishes Thinner should be used to thin Chinese Wood Oil and Seedlac.