best way to treat new oak staircase?

19 Mar 2009
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United Kingdom
Hi all,

Just had a new solid oak staircase installed today. I don't plan on carpeting it at all, but it will only be walked on with sock or slippers, never shoes. What am I best using to protect it while changing its appearance as little as possible? I want to treat it tomorrow morning and my local b+q has Colron refined finishing wax, Ronseal diamond hard matt or satin varnish, Colron danish oil or Colron teak oil all in natural colour.

Thanks in advance
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Oil finishes will always darken timbers and so you should avoid them. Wax finishes always attract dirt over time (in the antiques trade they call it "patina") and so should be avoided in the longer term if you want a "clean" look.

That leaves you with a Ronseal diamond hard matt or satin varnish, although personally I'd avoid B&Q and go to somewhere like a Dulux decorator centre (or a local branch of McDougal Rose or similar trade decorating outlet) and get either Dulux Diamond Glaze or possibly Sadolin Extra Durable Clear Coat. Unfortunately the Dulux is expensive, but it far outperforms the Ronseal product IMHO
Polished or oiled timber can be very slippery especially when wearing socks.
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Can be? You can guarantee falling down the stairs on a regular basis.
Job and Knock wrote
Oil finishes will always darken timbers and so you should avoid them.

Why avoid them when they showcase the real beauty of wood?
Made this little step stool from cherry and has two coats of boiled linseed oil then HVLP sprayed with a water based polyurenthane clear varnish.
Without the oil the stunning colours of the cherry would never have appeared.
Watco Danish oil is also a good option on cherry protected with poly clear.


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