Author Topic: Finishing my ErgoDock (+ other projects in the future)  (Read 3172 times)

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Offline balanar

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Finishing my ErgoDock (+ other projects in the future)
« on: Thu, 12 December 2013, 02:10:14 »

Ok so I received 2 sets of wonderful ErgoDocks made by none other than kurplop and were sold in this thread as an effort to raise money for GH. I finally have some time to dedicate to the finishing of these ErgoDocks and wanted to put up a thread to share my progress as well get comments/advice from the peeps on here. This would be my real first attempt at really working with wood so I'm excited and anxious at the same time even though its a small project.


I'll be sanding the ErgoDocks a bit in the evening (+8 GMT here in Singapore) and will put up more pics then.

47746-0
« Last Edit: Fri, 13 December 2013, 20:24:39 by balanar »

Offline balanar

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Re: Finishing my ErgoDock (+ other projects in the future)
« Reply #1 on: Thu, 12 December 2013, 11:06:46 »
Ok so I lightly sanded them with 800 grit and then 1500 grit sandpaper because there was some slight roughness and already they feel so damn smooth and look so nice:

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I also had to extend one of the hole for the feet of the ErgoDox as it was off by a smidgen, preventing the ED from resting flush with the dock:

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I'll update more tomorrow as I attempt to stain the plywood portion of the ErgoDock.
« Last Edit: Thu, 12 December 2013, 11:12:10 by balanar »

Offline balanar

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Re: Finishing my ErgoDock (+ other projects in the future)
« Reply #2 on: Thu, 12 December 2013, 21:24:17 »
Began staining the wood:



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Wood with 1 coat on the left, 2 coats on the right. Waited 4 hours between coats.


Sorry for the blurry pictures, stuck with only one lens and it doesn't cut it for these kinds of photos.

Offline jdc0589

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Re: Finishing my ErgoDock (+ other projects in the future)
« Reply #3 on: Fri, 13 December 2013, 09:59:29 »
that looks seriously awesome. I am about to solder up my boards this weekend.
What did you do for your case/housing? I don't have a solution at the moment and don't have access to a cnc/laser cutter.

Offline balanar

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Re: Finishing my ErgoDock (+ other projects in the future)
« Reply #4 on: Fri, 13 December 2013, 18:53:32 »
that looks seriously awesome. I am about to solder up my boards this weekend.
What did you do for your case/housing? I don't have a solution at the moment and don't have access to a cnc/laser cutter.

Thank you! I got the Classic case that was mass-produced. You can see a picture of it here. Right now, if you just want a case, you could contact czarek as he is working on offering ErgoDox cases in the future. You could probably get any other parts you need/forgot to purchase from him as well, especially if you are in Europe.

Offline balanar

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Re: Finishing my ErgoDock (+ other projects in the future)
« Reply #5 on: Fri, 13 December 2013, 20:30:30 »
Ok so both sides of the dock have been stained and the next step is to apply the polyurethane coats. Anybody with experience on working with wood have suggestions on how long I should wait between coats for this spray on version of poly? The instructions on the can just say to apply light coats a few minutes apart. I've read other instructions that say to wait till it dries hard.
« Last Edit: Fri, 13 December 2013, 20:35:09 by balanar »

Online kurplop

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Re: Finishing my ErgoDock (+ other projects in the future)
« Reply #6 on: Fri, 13 December 2013, 23:28:19 »
When in doubt, always give preference to the manufacturer's instructions. If you wait to long, urethanes won't chemically fuse with earlier coats. Sanding between coats becomes essential then to create a mechanical key to the base coat. Many finishes have a before/after range. Recoat within a certain amount of time and the coats will fuse and still allow further outgassing. Or you can wait until fully dry, sand, then recoat.

Thanks for posting your progress. It will be nice to see the kids fully dressed.

Offline balanar

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Re: Finishing my ErgoDock (+ other projects in the future)
« Reply #7 on: Sat, 14 December 2013, 02:38:03 »
When in doubt, always give preference to the manufacturer's instructions. If you wait to long, urethanes won't chemically fuse with earlier coats. Sanding between coats becomes essential then to create a mechanical key to the base coat. Many finishes have a before/after range. Recoat within a certain amount of time and the coats will fuse and still allow further outgassing. Or you can wait until fully dry, sand, then recoat.

Thanks for posting your progress. It will be nice to see the kids fully dressed.

Thank you for the advice kurplop! I am planning to take Rustoleum's suggestion to spray the layers a few minutes apart to mean about 10 minutes apart. The sanding between clear coats intimidates me alot because I don't see how I can do that without creating a scratched finish. Like I said, noob here. Time to go watch videos again.

I want to start spraying the layers of poly but the humidity here ranges between 70% - 90% so I am going to check if that will adversely affect my finishing of the rests before commencing.

Also, I have an idea for the plywood parts of the mahogany rest that hasn't been stained. If all goes well, it should look very 'luxurious'. More updates on that later.

Online kurplop

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Re: Finishing my ErgoDock (+ other projects in the future)
« Reply #8 on: Sat, 14 December 2013, 07:18:09 »
One thing you will notice with both walnut and mahogany is that they are both open grained woods. This means that if you want a "piano finish", that is, a smooth finish without indentations following the grain. you will have to apply many coats with some sanding between to level the low spots. I have streamlined the process by rubbing the finish when it is almost dry. This pushes the thickened material into the cracks, cutting down on the number of coats necessary.

 Of course some prefer the effect of the grain texture telegraphing through. It makes it look more like real wood, not a picture under a layer of plastic.  In this case, the trick is to have a uniform amount of grain texture exposed over the entire surface.

The high humidity can be an issue. Keep the coats light and you may try using a fan between coats. The downside is it exposes the drying finish to more dust, but it evaporates the solvents much quicker than still air. Urethanes don't blush (turn milky) as readily as lacquers in high humidity, so that shouldn't be an issue.

It's not as complicated as the suggestions make it appear and if something goes wrong, well that's what sandpaper is for.
« Last Edit: Sat, 14 December 2013, 07:20:06 by kurplop »

Offline balanar

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Re: Finishing my ErgoDock (+ other projects in the future)
« Reply #9 on: Sat, 14 December 2013, 07:22:09 »
Ok thank you again for the valuable information. When you say rubbing, what do you use? You mentioned it in the ErgoDock thread as well but I'm not sure how its done.

Online kurplop

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Re: Finishing my ErgoDock (+ other projects in the future)
« Reply #10 on: Sat, 14 December 2013, 09:18:31 »
Because of health concerns, I'm not sure I should recommend it, but on something as small as the ErgoDock I just use my finger. If you like to keep your hands clean you could wear nitrile gloves. The smoothing will leave fine streaks in the finish but shouldn't require sanding between coats if you recoat within the suggested time.

Offline balanar

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Re: Finishing my ErgoDock (+ other projects in the future)
« Reply #11 on: Fri, 20 December 2013, 19:03:34 »
Ok so I tried spraying thin layer by thin layer but after 5 coats, there was uneveness due to the grain as you mentioned kurplop. Not to mention the tendency of all the dust in the area to somehow find its way to my rest even though it wasn't particularly dusty or anything. Finally I decided to spray on a thicker layer and rub it in with my thumb. One side came out looking fantastic while the other has some uneven portions of poly. Going to have to sand down the excess poly and recoat it.

I have to say though, the wood looks really beautiful after the coats have gone on. There is a sort of 'glow' (for the lack of a better word) to the wood now. I took a video with my phone cam and will upload it later.