what should I finish my knotty pine ceiling with?

MommyquilterApril 14, 2008

I'm building a 3 season sunroom that has a Tongue in Groove Knotty pine vaulted ceiling. My contractor said that if I didn't want to stain it, I could just apply linseed oil periodically. Well, I was reading on the net that linseed oil can encourage mildew growth. 1) Is this true? What about shellac as an option?

I want to keep it looking natural, but since the floors are terra cotta colored tile I thought that a color would warm up the ceiling instead of being so yellow. I don't want the finish to be shiny though. What do y'all think? Thanks in advance.


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If it was mine, I'd use shellac. If it's too glossy, at the end rub it out with a bit of scotch-brite or similar non-woven abrasive pad.

Several advantages:
- Easily renewed or repaired by adding more shellac
- Seals the resins in the knots

Yes, pine can be stained. But it stains with difficulty, as witnessed by all the trim in the restaurant I was in over the weekend. Left to its on, the pine will develop a nice patina, particularly in a UV rich room such as a three season room.

Linseed oil will be more of a maintenance problem.

Or you can do both. Put on some linseed oil, let it dry for a week, then put on a couple of coats of shellac.

Before you jump in with both feet, get some scrap from the contractor and test out your finish options to see if they are to your liking.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2008 at 8:23AM
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thanks bobsmycuncle for the good ideas.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2008 at 9:17AM
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Take a look at Waterlox. I love the stuff, I used it on my pine floors.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2008 at 4:41PM
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I'm in a similar situation, but am starting my own thread about it-- don't want to be a hijacker.

Just wanted to say linseed, though wonderful in many regards, probably would darken your ceiling quite a lot. I've sprayed in on my father's shake roof at his insistence, and was a little apalled at how much it darkened. But encourage mildew? No. You don't get mildew unless you have moisture, and then your wood finish isn't the main concern.

Linseed was used in interior and exterior oil paints for years, was only replaced when petro chemicals became a cheaper alternative.

I'd use some scrap pieces for color tests before commiting to anything. If you paint a wall the wrong color, its easy to paint over it. Wood finishing is a great deal less forgiving-- a penetrating finish like linseed can never be completely removed and will affect every subsequent layer you put over it [accept, again, for paint].

    Bookmark   April 16, 2008 at 6:21PM
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