5 Best Finish for Douglas Fir (Wood Glower’s Review)

Douglas fir, like other woods, needs their share of finish to protect themselves from damage and deterioration. Otherwise, they won’t be protected from water, impact, or even corrosion.

In fact, they will be exposed in the open.

Thus, you must give them their share of arms to fight the battle on fair terms. And for that, you need the best finish for douglas fir.

But hey, there are so many options in the market. Which one should I go for?

Well, to narrow down your choice we have selected the 5 greatest ones that the market has to offer. Thus, now you won’t have to go through hundreds of different products.

You see, going through these top picks will be enough. But if you still can’t make up your mind then we have a few info points that can help you decide.

So, if you have your reading cap on we can get started-

1. Watco 65351 Oil Wood

At A Glance

  • Amount: 1 Pint
  • Type: Oil Finish
  • Available color: 9
  • Ideal For: Indoors
  • Drying Time: 6 Hours
  • Coverage: 85 sq ft

First and foremost, we have our favorite product: Watco 65351 Danish Oil Wood. This one is an oil finish so all you oil finish lovers can have a look at this item and check out whether it meets your expectations or not.

To start off, we will like to mention that this oil-based product offers 9 different shades. So, you have the option to choose what your Douglas fir wood will look like. Unlike the others, your options will not be limited. 

Besides, it is budget-friendly.So, while it offers a lot on the table it won’t eat a huge chunk of your salary. But what else does it offer?

Well, as mentioned before this is an oil finish, thus it will penetrate deep into your furniture. Hence, it can heal the wood from the inside and ensure that it grows safely.

Moreover, it takes 6 hours to dry. Now, it might not be pretty quick to dry but it is still decent timing. Remember there are finishes that take ages to dry up. So, you have to wait for days till you’re done applying the 2nd and 3rd layers.

But at least with this one, you will be able to finish up your job within the day. Provided that you do spend an entire day behind it and have some patience while doing the job.

Plus, the oil comes in a bottle of one pint. And with that amount, you will be able to cover 85 sq ft. Now, that is a pretty high coverage for its amount. So, if you have to cover an entire Douglas fir floor then this will do.

However, if you don’t need it then you can keep it for later use. Besides, you will get a warm rich glow. It will mostly look like the wood was hand rubbed. Hence, it will get a more natural vibe to it.

Moreover, this finish does its fundamental job pretty well. It is able to provide protection from spills, abrasion, chipping, and peeling. So, you won’t have to worry about your wood getting damaged.

2. Minwax PolyShades Stain and Polyurethane

At A Glance

  • Type: Stain & Polyurethane
  • Amount: Quart
  • Available Color: 22
  • Item Weight: ‎2.25 pounds
  • Product Dimensions: 4.25 x 4.25 x 4.88 inches

Moving on from oil products, we have the Minwax PolyShades Stain & Polyurethane. But don’t worry, we have other options and you can go over them and see what fits.

Let’s try this one-

The best thing about this product is that it is a mixture of stain & polyurethane. You won’t want to stain before applying the finish. So, this combo of stain and finish will help you save some time. And it has the most color variation out of all the products.

In fact, it has 22 different options. It comes in honey, pekan, and other basic colors like white. There are many more options you can choose from.

So, you get to choose which color you want to settle for. But the best thing is you get the beauty that you were supposed to get from staining and the polyurethane protects the wood.

Thus, you won’t have to brush it on, let it soak in for a few minutes, then wipe it off. Hence, it removes a step from the whole process which can be quite a bit of hassle for some people.

Plus it makes your piece of wood beautiful and protects it too. Moreover, it can be used over polyurethane finishes. So, if you already have a wooden piece that has a polyurethane finish then you can use this product on top of it.

You see, there is no need to remove the existing finish. This product can work on top of the finish and still result in good outcomes.

Plus, it has the same drying time as the previous one. That means this one will also take 6 hours to dry.

Now, this might not be the quickest time to dry but at least you will be able to recoat it within the same day. And this way, you can get the job done within one day.

3. Rust-Oleum Zinsser 854 Sanding Sealer

At A Glance

  • Amount: 1 Quart
  • Type: Sanding Sealer
  • Coverage: 400-600 sq ft per Gallon
  • Drying Time: Couple of Minutes

Moving on, we have the Rust-Oleum Zinsser 854 Sanding Sealer. This one is actually a sanding sealer. That means if you have to lock the Douglas wood in its state after sanding it then this one is the perfect match.

Besides, you might love it because it dries within minutes So, you can recoat it quite quickly and be done super fast. Some people even say that it’s lightening-fast. While that might not be literally true but its drying time is truly amazing.

Besides that, it has great coverage. So, for every 1 gallon, you get about 400 to 600 sq ft coverage. That is like one gigantic room. But the one that we have is quite a small size. It is only about 1 pint.

So, you get like 100 to 150 sq ft coverage. Now, that is still decent coverage. Well, more than other offerings in this list. So, if you need to slap this finish on some sort of Douglas flow then feel free to do so.

However, our favorite thing about this product is that it doesn’t age or get yellow with time. Thus, the wood doesn’t become another person who is yellow in color. We personally don’t like that when it happens.

4. Waterlox TB 6044 Finish

At A Glance

  • Type: Satin
  • Amount: 1 Quart
  • Drying Time: 24 Hours
  • Gloss Level: 20 to 25 degree
  • Item Weight: ‎1.99 pounds

Next up, we have the Waterlox TB 6044 Finish. Now, this product is quite down on the list but it did beat out its competitors. So, give it a chance, and let’s have a look at its features together-

Well, this is the only satin finish that we have on our list. So, if you’re a fan of shiny gloss finish then you could get this. Besides, it works great on Douglas fir wood if you’re planning on using it in your kitchen.

Moreover, this finish is actually waterproof. So, even if you paint your Douglas fir wood with this it will still protect it from water. Just like the other products would.

However, just because it is waterproof doesn’t mean you won’t be able to clean it easily.  You see, this product results in the finish being quite elastic in nature. Thus, even if you spill stuff like food or drink you can easily clean it.

Plus, it is formulated to be just like the old tung oils. That means even though it is a satin finish it will still penetrate deep into the wood and heal from there.

However, it does take quite a long time to dry. In fact, it takes 24 hours for this finish to dry. So, you will have to wait a while before applying the second layer of coatings. So, be ready to do this work for a few days before you’re done.

5. Hope’s Pure Natural Wood Finish

At A Glance

  • Amount: 32 Fl Oz
  • Type: Tung Oil Finish
  • Drying Time: 1 Hour
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 5.2 x 2.5 inches
  • Item Weight: 2 pounds

Lastly, we have Hope’s Pure Natural Wood Finish. This is another tung oil finish that we have for our list. We thought of ending this list with a bang so let’s go through the last item to see if this clicks or not.

The exceptional thing about Hope is that it is famous for its low gloss look. Now, if you are not a big fan of glossy looks but don’t do something too matt then this might be suitable for you. It gives an amazing texture of the Douglas Fir wood.

In fact, it truly does capture its real essence and preserves it from any further damage. Plus, this oil also penetrates deep into the wood and heals it from beneath.

Moreover, it is quite easy to use. All you have to do is wipe on and allow the oil to cure at room temperature. On top of this, you don’t have to really wait for that long. 

After that, you are free to apply as many layers as you want. So, with this, you will be done in quite a short amount of time.

How Does Finish Help the Woods?

Whenever you’re finishing a woodworking project the last thing you need to apply is a finish. But have you ever stopped to wonder why it is important?

Well, you might already know this but the finish is what protects your wood from damage or destruction. It mainly stops the wood from getting damaged by water, frost, corrosion, or a heavy impact.

As the finish is capable of protecting the wood from so much it actually increases the lifespan of the wood. So, your furniture gets to live a few extra years.

Thus, it is an important step. Hence, we recommend you not skip it by any chance.

Is Staining Before Applying Finish Really Necessary?

Another question that we often get is whether staining is necessary or not. Well, to be honest, it really isn’t mandatory but we will recommend that you stain the wood before applying finish.

That is because staining makes your wood look a bit more prominent. They increase the beauty of the wood and make it more attractive. And once you’re done staining it you can lock that look by applying finish.

So, the main difference between staining and finishing is that stain beautifies the wood. While finish actually ensures that the wood doesn’t suffer any sort of damage.

What Type of Finish Works on Douglas Fir?

best finish for douglas fir

There are so many finishes on the market. Which one should I go for?

Now, if you have had these thoughts then that is totally normal. This is because along with the brands there are a couple of different types of finish. Let’s find-

1. Oil Finish

Firstly we have the oil-based finish. Now, these oil finishes tend to mainly have linseed or tung oil. So, the benefits of using oil finish on douglas fir are that it penetrates deep into the wood and ensures its safety from the inside.

Moreover, it can also repair the cracks and holes in the wood. That is because this type of varnish dries solid when they are doing their job.

One major problem is that they don’t really provide waterproof protection. Thus, the wood stays under the threat of water damage.

Plus, you have to repaint the oil finish every once in a while. That means 6 months actually. And you actually get a sort of the warmer color of the wood.

Now, you might like it but at the same time, there is a risk that it might be too yellow for you. So, do check it out whether you like it or not.

2. Varnish

Another option for you is varnish. You see, they are quite durable in nature. That means no matter how much you mess up they will still work to protect your wooden furniture or project.

Thus, you get a lot of protection from them. More than the oil varnishes at least, so if that is your primary goal then you can definitely go with varnishes.

However, it is not easy to mix varnishes. They have to be stirred properly. Or else bubbles can form which can cause lousy marks on the furniture. Thus, it is not an easy job. Moreover, they do tend to get yellow over time.

3. Water-Based Varnish

Don’t want those yellow marks on your Douglas fir?

Well, then try the water-based varnish. They are known for not making the wooden pieces yellow. Plus, they dry off super fast and are quite easy to clean off. So, you won’t have to put in a lot of work behind it.

Moreover, it doesn’t provide any hazard to society. That’s because it is less polluting.

But you must be careful with this type of finish. That is because it is quite hard to take off once it has fully dried. So, do apply it correctly. Plus, be aware that you will get a bit bland look when compared to the other finishes.

How to Apply Finish on Doug Fir?

Applying a finish is something you will want to know after purchasing a finish. This is applicable for all woods including Oak, Cedar chest, and more. But how will you know whether you are actually up for applying to finish all by yourself or not?

Well, the only way to find out is by knowing how to apply it. Now, we will show you a quick sneak peek into how to apply it.

It will give you a basic idea of what you’re getting into. After that, you can decide whether it is your cup of tea or not.

Step 1: Stain the Wood

Before applying the finish, we advise people to stain it. That is because this helps to increase the overall beauty of the wood.

Thus, it is not a mandatory step but it is quite important. So, you have to mix the stain and apply it using a brush.

Step 2: Mix the Finish

Before applying the finish you first have to mix it well so that it blends properly. And then when you apply it, it goes on the wood evenly.

Thus, get a brush and mix the finish for a couple of minutes until they are evenly mixed. After that, you can proceed to the next stage.

Step 3: Apply a Layer of Finish

Moving on, you have to apply a layer of finish. For this, all you need to do is get a brush and stroke down the finish on your wood. Now, while applying the finish make sure that you move the brush along the grain.

Don’t try to go against it. That never works out too well for anyone. But hey, that’s not all.

Step 4: Repeat the Process

Applying one layer of finish won’t be enough. You will have to keep on applying the finish till you have about 2 to 3 layers.

But don’t be impatient. You have to wait for the finish to dry before you can apply it again.

So, do keep that in mind.

Step 5: Wait for the Finish to Dry

Last but not least, you will have to wait for the finish to dry. How long?

Well, that depends on the type of finish you end up using. Each finish has a different drying time. So, it actually boils down to your choice. Thus, do pick carefully or else you will have to spend an awful lot of hype behind it.

Frequently Asked Questions

Question: Is Douglas fir naturally rot-resistant?

Answer: Douglas fir is a bit resistant-free. But there are some cases where they are prone to natural disasters. Hence, it becomes quite necessary to seal them off with finishes so that they don’t get badly damaged.

Question: Can finish be harmful?

Answer: Since finishes are made of chemical substances they can pose a threat to the health of someone. Most of the time they are made of harmful volatile chemicals. They can be quite dangerous for the people working around them. 

Question: How long does it take for finishes to dry?

Answer: The time taken for finishes to dry varies. But generally, it generally takes 4 to 8 hours for water-based finishes to dry. Oil-based ones take 4 to 24 hours to dry. 

Question: Is finished wood toxic?

Answer: Generally the finishes make the wood toxic. That is because they contain a lot of harmful chemicals that are volatile in nature. That is why the woods become toxic.

To Conclude

Well, that’s all we had on the best finish for douglas fir for today. We hope that we were able to provide you with ample info so that you can make the right choice now.

Anyway, we will leave you to make the best decision. We trust that you will make the right choice. So, best of luck.

Kevin Smith

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