Polishing floor finish with handheld orbital buffer ?

Reply

  #1  
Old 05-17-16, 01:19 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
Polishing floor finish with handheld orbital buffer ?

Is it practical to polish the polyurethane finish with a handheld orbital buffer (like one below) ? Is a handheld buffer strong enough ? I have about 600-700sq of flooring that i'm looking to polish after stain and coat.

Ryobi ONE+ 18-Volt 10 in. Orbital Buffer (Tool-Only)-P435 - The Home Depot
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 05-17-16, 01:32 PM
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: WI/MN
Posts: 18,567
It's not typical to polish polyurethane but it can be done. Normal is to apply three coats of polyurethane with light, scuff sands in between to promote adhesion of the layers.
 
  #3  
Old 05-17-16, 01:49 PM
Handyone's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: U.S.
Posts: 5,451
Almost every room in my home is oil based poly over oak planks. The only buffing I have ever done was by mopping the floor with pine-sol or other cleaner such as murphy's oil soap and then gently 'buffing' with a microfiber mop. The buffing I do is not to increase the sheen, but only to remove any streaks. If your floors are looking dull, this makes a big difference.
 
  #4  
Old 05-17-16, 02:38 PM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
About the only time I've seen hardwood floors buffed is in schools where they buff a wax over the finish as this allows the finish to last decades even though it has increased traffic.

IMO you are better off applying 3 coats of poly over the stain [sanding and removing dust between coats] Poly comes in 3 basic sheens; satin, semi-gloss and gloss.
 
  #5  
Old 05-17-16, 05:54 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
Thanks for the feedbacks! So basically Stain and and apply a few coating of poly is all I need to do?

Btw, would you guys be able to identify what kind of flooring do I have from the pictures before ? Anything I have to look out for with this kind of wood?


Name:  20160517_194821.jpg
Views: 260
Size:  20.9 KBName:  20160517_194844.jpg
Views: 249
Size:  25.6 KB
 
  #6  
Old 05-18-16, 03:01 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
Looks like it might be white oak.
 
  #7  
Old 05-18-16, 10:06 AM
Handyone's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: U.S.
Posts: 5,451
Agreed it's quarter-sawn white oak. Almost all of the solid oak floors are.

My opinion is it looks best with no stain, just the poly. It almost looks like the floor doesn't even need refinishing, just a top coat.
 
  #8  
Old 05-18-16, 11:44 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
I've refreshed a lot of floors with just a light sanding, remove dust and applying a fresh coat of poly.

is this the same floor referenced in your other thread? http://www.doityourself.com/forum/so...r-contain.html
 
  #9  
Old 05-18-16, 01:13 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
Yes, that's the same floor that I referenced in another thread. The problem is some spots look significantly faded because I used wood bleach to remove black water mark stains. Can poly mask that to some extend or make it less noticeable? I can post some pictures after I get home to show guys the water bleached spots.
 
  #10  
Old 05-18-16, 01:24 PM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
Waterbased polys don't change the look of the wood any, oil base polys will deepen it some. The odds are the bleached areas will show with just poly. A lot depends on how bad it is.
 
  #11  
Old 05-18-16, 01:25 PM
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: WI/MN
Posts: 18,567
Often the only way to make a floor look even in cases like this is either to go back and bleach it all or stain it a very dark color. As Mark said, how much difference there is does come into play.
 
  #12  
Old 05-18-16, 04:07 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
Here are additional photos of the floor with bleached areas.

Name:  20160518_190146.jpg
Views: 299
Size:  25.3 KBName:  20160518_185835_001.jpg
Views: 241
Size:  22.5 KBName:  20160518_190146.jpg
Views: 299
Size:  25.3 KB
 
  #13  
Old 05-18-16, 08:18 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
After I bleach the floor with wood bleach, is it necessary to mop the floor a few times with water to remove the residual oxalic acid? I did it in the past and i remember that it took many mop and rinse to remove the smell of oxalic acid in mop bucket. or was all of that unneccesary since i will finish with a coat of poly in the end ?
 
  #14  
Old 05-19-16, 03:24 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
I believe sanding down to bare wood would remove most of that color difference.

Generally rinsing any cleaner [including wood bleach] a couple of times is all that is needed.
 
  #15  
Old 06-06-16, 06:53 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
Just a follow up, it has been about 3 weeks since I applied the the oil based stain. When I rub the floor hard with a clean white clothe I can still see the stain transferring to the white clothe. Does this mean that the floor is not fully cured yet ? Or is that just the natural of the stain? I'm looking to apply water based poly and I know it is important for the oil based stain to fully cured before apply the poly.
 
  #16  
Old 06-06-16, 07:04 AM
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: WI/MN
Posts: 18,567
I wouldn't advise water based poly over oil based stain - you started with oil, best to stick with that.

I'll let Mark comment on the stain issue but it sounds to me like maybe you didn't get back to bare wood for the stain to soak in.
 
  #17  
Old 06-06-16, 08:50 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
Either the excess stain wasn't sufficiently wiped off after application or as SS mentioned the wood wasn't completely raw. Oil base stain [with excess removed] should be ready for a water based poly in 24 hrs. Cool temps or high humidity can make the wait time longer but 3 weeks is proof that something went wrong!

I'd take a rag damp with mineral spirits and scrub the floor. If it just removes a little stain you'll probably be good to go shortly, if it removes a lot of stain that indicates the wood wasn't raw and probably needs to be resanded.

You could just use an oil base poly BUT it's possible the wet poly would rewet the stain, pick it up and deposit it on another section of the floor Adhesion and clarity issues are the dangers of applying waterbased poly over tacky oil stain.
 
  #18  
Old 06-06-16, 08:53 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
Gotcha! I definitely missed the wiping off excess stain step. Would that more than likely explains the stain on the clothe after 3 weeks ?
 
  #19  
Old 06-06-16, 08:56 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
Definitely! Interior stains are not formulated to dry by itself but rather by absorption of the wood with the excess being wiped off. You'll need to scrub the floor down with mineral spirits rags, it will be time consuming but should work ok. Be sure to dispose of the rags properly!!!
 
  #20  
Old 06-08-16, 06:42 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
Here is an update of the project. I went ahead and used mineral spirits to clean up any excess oil, but surprisingly it didnt seem like there was much stain that got transferred to the wipe clothes. The clothes did get very dirty, not sure if that was from the dusts that accumulated over the past three weeks. After I let the mineral spirits dried I went ahead and applied my first coat of miniwax fast dry oil based poly. The picture below actually looks better than it looks in reality. First, the stain was some what uneven because I was hand sanding and with a portable orbital sander so it was hard to get a good even sand on the whole floor.

And second, the poly is also uneven in some spots and rough in others. Is this something that can smooth it self out with more coats and sanding between coats ? or that has more to do with bad techniques?

Name:  IMG-20160608-WA0000.jpg
Views: 226
Size:  33.0 KB
 
  #21  
Old 06-08-16, 06:52 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
It is common for the 1st coat of poly to raise the grain more in some areas than other. Sanding and removing the dust will correct that. It generally takes 3 coats with a light sanding between them to get a nice finish.
 
  #22  
Old 06-09-16, 10:32 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
How important is it for oil based poly to fully dry before applying another coat ? I was trying to sand the first layer and it kinda gummed up my sander paper. and how important is it to make sure every inch is sand ? I'm sure I sanded +90% of the surface but it was hard to track every single inch of the floor.
 
  #23  
Old 06-09-16, 10:48 AM
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: WI/MN
Posts: 18,567
If its gumming up your sandpaper, wait a little longer. It is important to sand as much as you can, as the nooks and crannies you're creating are what the new coat of poly is going to flow into to create a mechanical bond between the coats to prevent peeling.
 
  #24  
Old 06-09-16, 02:07 PM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
It is kind of a gray area, if the poly isn't hard enough to sand but dry to the touch and you can recoat without issues - it will create a chemical bond BUT the other purpose of sanding is to remove any raised grain or application marks. I'd give it a little longer to dry, maybe have a fan move air thru the room.
 
  #25  
Old 06-16-16, 09:29 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
Has anyone had any success with using Minwax Polyshades for flooring ? I couldnt find a stain that I really like until i used the polyshades classic oak. I understand that it is not meant for flooring. If the concern is the durability, can I simply just coat additional layers of poly on top myself ?
 
  #26  
Old 06-17-16, 03:52 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
The reason PolyShades isn't recommended for flooring is because it has color in the poly. As the poly wears away so does the color I only recall using it once on a floor and that was a small area where a section had been replaced and I couldn't get the stain color right Just those individual boards got the tinted poly and then it got 2 coats of clear poly over it to protect from wear. I assume it did ok long term but have no way of knowing for sure.

I don't like applying tinted poly over bare wood unless spraying as it is too hard to control lap marks. Tinted polys must be applied evenly! Lap marks and drips will have more color, thin or missed spots will have less. I almost always apply the first coat of poly before applying tinted poly as that makes application easier and gives you a better idea as to what needs to be done color wise.
 
  #27  
Old 06-29-16, 07:07 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
Does anyone know if there is anything chemically different between the the Minwax Clear Satin and Clear Gross ? When I applied the clear gross in my other room, it dried overnight. The clear Satin that I applied in the second room a few days ago still feel tacky.

One interesting observation I noted was that I tested a small section of the clear gross floor with a coat of satin on top and that section dried pretty quick. But the satin coat that I applied over stained wood ( first coat) still feel tacky after a few days. I don't know how dry is dry but this time I remember to wipe off excess stain and waited over a week before applying the coat.


Satin:
Minwax 1 qt. Satin Fast-Drying Polyurethane-63010 - The Home Depot

Clear Gross:
Minwax 1 gal. Satin Fast Drying Polyurethane-319020000 - The Home Depot
 
  #28  
Old 06-29-16, 07:18 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
I've used all 3 sheens of minwax [satin, semi, gloss] and have never noticed any drying time differences. Humidity and air flow will affect drying time. You say it dried slow over the stain - was all the excess stain removed or was it left on the floor? Excess stain doesn't dry well and the poly could have rewet it causing a slower dry time.
 
  #29  
Old 06-29-16, 07:33 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
I feel comfortable (not 100% since im a first time DIYer) to say that the excess was wiped and the stain is dry. The only thing is there was a few spots that I cleaned with mineral spirits before applying the first coat and I didn't wait for the mineral spirits to completely dry before applying. My question now is will the tacky poly coat eventually dry? Do I need it to be completely dry before applying additional coats ? The only thing is I wouldn't be able to sand when it is still tacky. But I think I heard that sanding is not required when applying over an uncured coat.
 
  #30  
Old 06-29-16, 10:33 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
Applying a fresh coat over tacky poly can be tricky, small areas usually don't present problems but the bigger the area the more difficult it might be. Have you tried setting a fan up to blow across the floor?
 
  #31  
Old 06-29-16, 07:17 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
Just wondering, if it is possible that maybe I gotten a bad batch or maybe it was a customer returned (pretty common at Homedepot)? I understand there is a big difference between gloss vs satin, but I didn't expect satin to be this dull as you can see in one of the pictures. There is really no sheen at all.

And also, is it normal for Satin Poly to dry like that in the can ? (The can with red drawing) My gloss poly that is over a month old didnt have that (the other can without drawing).




Name:  20160629_215115(1).jpg
Views: 128
Size:  26.6 KBName:  20160629_215125(1).jpg
Views: 177
Size:  23.7 KBName:  20160629_215631(BIG.jpg
Views: 229
Size:  42.8 KB
 
  #32  
Old 06-30-16, 03:07 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
Satin is fairly dull, the sheen is more visible at an angle than it is straight on. The sheen level on any coating doesn't show that well until there is enough coating on the substrate to adequately seal it. The rougher the substrate is the less the sheen will appear.

Was the dried poly on the inside of the can when you first opened it? For it to be dried part way down the can had to be opened so air can get to it and not be full of poly. It's not uncommon for the poly to dry out like that in a partially filled can. IF the can was full and you found the dried poly partway down - someone refilled it. If a can sets a long long time and skims over, the dried poy would be at the top of the can.
 
  #33  
Old 07-12-16, 01:13 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
Just finished applying the finish satin coat in my living room. The satin coat does a much better job at hiding the imperfections. At a standing position ( 65 degree angle i believe), the floor is pretty smooth, but at a knee down position (35 degree?), the lap and drips marks are more noticeable. Would you leave it alone or spot finish those areas ?

If you were to spot finish those areas, would you use the same poly or would it be easier to use the spray or wipe on ? I'm a first time DIYer, so something the regular oil based poly is a little thick for me to apply smoothly.
 
  #34  
Old 07-12-16, 01:47 PM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
Unless it's bad enough to sand and recoat the entire floor in the room it's best to leave it be. Touch ups are hard to make disappear.
 
  #35  
Old 07-19-16, 08:33 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
I ended up liking the Satin sheen so much better that I went back to the first room with the gloss finish and add another coat of satin. After the finish coat dried I saw that I missed a few spots here and there, so I sanded those spots and re-applied a coat of satin poly. After those spots dried, I noticed that the sheen is different than the surrounding area. Previously when I spot finish with gloss poly, the sheen would look exactly the same that I wouldn't be able to tell where the spot was that I applied. Any idea why I would have problem with Satin ?
 
  #36  
Old 07-19-16, 03:27 PM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
I think you were either just lucky previously or you just didn't pay as close attention to the sheen difference. Touching up poly on a floor is always iffy. The best method is to paint whole individual boards.
 
  #37  
Old 07-21-16, 10:09 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
I'm still trying to figure out is how is it possible that the new spot finish area can have such huge difference in the sheen. See attached (please ignore the unevenless and marks). I tried the satin pray, wipe on, another can of satin and still couldn't get the dull sheen of the rest of the floor.

I'm wondering if it is possible that the original can that I used was "concentrated". As you can see in my previous posts, some of the ploy inside the can dried and evaporated a bit. If I understand correctly, that would leave a higher ratio of flattening agents to poly.


Name:  20160721_073312.jpg
Views: 153
Size:  34.3 KB
 
  #38  
Old 07-21-16, 02:48 PM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
some of the ploy inside the can dried and evaporated a bit.
Was this a noticeable amount? did you have to add thinner or strain the poly before it could be used?

Hard to tell from a pic but the overall floor appears flatter than satin but the touch up appears shinier. I would never attempt a touch up in that manner!
 
  #39  
Old 07-21-16, 07:26 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 41
I can definitely see coats of dried poly inside the can. How much dried and evaporated? I cant say for sure, but my guess is not more than 10 to 15%. Yes, I do wonder why the rest of the floor with the original gallon size satin poly look so much flatter. I tried minwax satin spray and wipe on and nothing came close to that dullness. Another thing I noticed was the smaller can of minwax satin poly look very different than the gallon size (the labels look exactly the same except for different size). The gallon size poly is much thicker and darker ( like honey buy maybe some bit thinner) while the quart size poly Is like lemonade.

At this point I think it may just be easier to reco at the whole floor, but 1) I just hate sanding, 2) I don't know if the new poly is going to give me the same flatness or more like sheen of that new spot. 3) it is hard for me to detect if I never missed any spot. I don't want to miss a spot and go through the same process.
 
  #40  
Old 07-22-16, 03:25 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,578
I wonder if someone used part of the quart then topped it off with thinner and returned it to the store

When coating the floor it helps to view the poly at an angle as that will better allow you to see the wet poly versus the dry. The wet poly will be shinier than the dry, this is true with any sheen. What are you applying the poly with?
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
'