I can't tell you how many times I have tried something that everybody swears by and come away with the conclusion "it must be me." :-) Seriously though, I am of the firm opinion that nothing works for everybody all the time. Maybe it has something to do with the phase of the moon or the alignment of the planets. And what works for me works for me and thats about the best I can say for it.
Anyway, here's my general finishing technique for pens (caveat: my method varies a little depending on the way the wood looks, the type of wood, if I'm in too much of a hurry, . . . oh, yeah,and , the phase of the moon):
1. Generally I sand down to 600, then I use some cloth backed abrasive I have that is marked "extra fine", I'm really not sure the #, but it is finer than 600, then, I hit it with some steel wool - I know, I know, but I like it ;
2. Next I burnish with a handful of shavings. I try to use those from the same wood, but I keep a feed sack full of general shavings beside the lathe. My studio is in an unattached and unsealed garage, so I keep halfway expecting to find a scorpion in the sack, so I am real careful with this step ; I apply a good deal of friction so I use a big handful as it can get pretty hot - or maybe tat's just the scorpion :-) .
3. I then - sometimes - use Tung or Danish oil. Sometimes I use one coat an wipe it off - sometimes I let it build a little applying friction at moderate to high speeds.
4. Then comes the CrCt. I apply this while the pen is turning - the higher the speed the better. I hold a clean cloth on the pen and apply the CrCt to the cloth as the pen picks it up. I work it in with a good deal of friction. Sometimes I apply two coats (phase of the moon)
5. Finally, I put on another coat or two of carnuba depending on . . . well, you know.
As I say, I don't know if this is the "preferrred" method, or if it works for anybody else. The only thing I know is it works for me.
>How are you guys putting this stuff on because my results stunk and everyone
>else seems to like it??
>I have made thousands of pens and durability is a real concern when you want
>repeat business. I have even been a contributor to some of the bigger pen
>sellers on the internet with great success but I sure didn't have any luck
>with this stuff. Maybe it's me, fill me in on your technique.
>Wood pens 16.00, Deer Antler pens 31.00
>> I have used it on pens and decorative (small) bowls. Easy to use, has
>> held up great for me. The bowls dont get handled too much so that isn't
>> much of a durability test, but the pens have seemed to hold up quite
>> > Woodcraft are now listing a new finishing product, Hut Crystal Coat, on
>> > their web site. From the description, it appears to be a shellac-based
>> > friction polish, but which also contains carnauba wax. Has anyone used
>> > this product? Is it any good? Finally, does anyone know how I can get
>> > hold of it in the UK, as Woodcraft say they cannot ship it outside the
>> > USA because it is a potentially combustible material, and a threat to
>> > any aircraft which carries it - even if I ask for surface mail delivery!