I am making a table out of a cross section from a very large 30" diameter sugar maple tree. Its a gorgeous piece. It is quilting, spalting, and has a few nice desired bark inclusions. I do not have professional spray equipment. I am looking for recommendations for a finish that will not be a "raincoat" on the wood. I can't wax it because of the soft areas, inclusions etc. I always seem to see bad dust balls and streaks if I try a oil poly. Is there a good way to finish this gorgeous piece by an amateur without having brush marks, dust chunks, and etc?
From contributor C:
Im not familiar with the term - "raincoat". Do you mean a waterproof finish or one that is thick? If it were mine I would treat it with tung oil from Sutherland Wells Co. It is a polymerizes oil - three or four coats should do it. Make sure to follow the directions. It will require at least yearly maintenance if used.