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Tips for fixing finish on BGE Cypress Table

NoleC5NoleC5 Posts: 172
edited 10:24PM in EggHead Forum
Hi everyone....

I have a big weekend planned for the egg...but not cooking related. Have to replace the gasket and I'm also hoping to fix the finish on our Cypress Table.

When I got it, we sanded it with 220 and put about 4 coats of spar urathane on it, sanding in-between coats.

Now...there are a lot of dark, black spots...some of which almost look like mold. Table has only been in use for just shy of a year.

Would it be my best bet to sand it all the way down and re-apply the urathane???


  • I think the problem is the cypress is so pourous that it sucks up moisture and then the moisture is trapped under the finish and discolors. I did not finish mine and it is a little discolored but it is due to drips from sauce, grease, etc. I think cypress falls into the hardwood category but it has the density of yellow pine.

    I keep mine looking decent because I have a covered cooking area and I spray it routinely with Clorox based cleaner.

    Hope this helps :unsure:
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 22,993
    only way is to sand and redo to get the black spots out. dont know everyones experience with that stuff but i did all the inside woodwork in my house with it, was somewhat soft for 6 or so months before it really hardened up like regular urethane. all the teak on my boat had spar varnish on it, glad its all worn off now :laugh: too much upkeep for me
  • What he said: you can only get the black marks out with sanding. Upkeep with spar varnish is a bear, esp if the surface is exposed to grease/oils (some boat owners ban suntan oils to preserve their brightwork). I'd skip the marine urethane (though I do love the look of Interlux's schooner varnish), sand the hell out of the top, and rub in some Danish oil finish. Two or three coats, hand-rubbed, with a course of sandpaper then steel wool between coats, will deeply penetrate the wood. Follow up with two or three coats of butcher's paste wax and the surface with be gorgeous, very water & stain repellent, and easy to care for.

    Note: I'm assuming that your table is open to the air, but under a roof (like on a porch or under a carport). If it is out in the open, covered with a plastic cover, just about nothing is gonna prevent mold from growing on the wood.
  • NoleC5NoleC5 Posts: 172

    It is out in the open air and I don't have a covered porch at this point.

    With that being the sounds like my time may be better spent grilling and learn to live with it the way it is???
  • Carolina QCarolina Q Posts: 12,994
    I've never used cypress, but I've always understood it to be VERY rot resistant and really needs no finish. If left to it's own devices, I understand it will weather to a very nice gray color. If I ever build an Egg table, that is what I was planning to do. If that is NOT the case, please tell me now! :blink:

    In your case, that would mean a lot of sanding, but then, I think you were planning on that anyway.

    I hate it when I go to the kitchen for food and all I find are ingredients!


    Central Connecticut 

  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 22,993
    i believe its similar to teak. stain, oil, or let it weather. if you let it weather, rub watered down bleach over it once a year to clean up any green that may develop if your area is humid and wet. paper wasps love teak, probably the same with cypress, it will get grey and you will see small sanded blotches from the wasps.
  • Kinda hate to show my chair/table due to its appearance. It just rained and getting a little dark out so I used the flash.

    I built this from cypress about 5 or 6 years ago. No finish has been applied and there is absolutely no rot or signs of deterioration of the wood. I did pressure wash it a couple of years ago and the beautiful original color was under the gray color. So this is what it looks like about three years. It is in the open and only covered when the umbrella is up at times in the summer.

    Have not had one paper wasp nest on it.

    The second pic is of a piece of the same wood that has been stored in my basement since I made the chairs.



  • I agree with Celeste above. You will have to sand off the varnish or what's left of it and the black spots. I also would recommend the Danish oil, with or without the wax. The Danish oil is super easy, extremely durable, looks beautiful and can be re-applied once a year or never if you like the way the wood naturally changes. The oil will never peel, crack or discolor. Take a look at the thread on the EGG Table forum under "Another new table" where there is a question about finishes and waterproofing. (I'd place a direct link here if I knew what I was doing, but I don't. Sorry) Good luck!
  • NoleC5NoleC5 Posts: 172
    So if I'm understanding sounds like my best bet would be to:

    1) sand down and leave as is and let it weather naturally


    2) sand down and finish with Danish Oil


    3) can I just leave it as is and let it continue to weather? My fear is that the dark spots (possibly mold) could be harmful.

    Thanks again for everyones is really appreciated.
  • Sounds like you got it figgerd out! My 2 cents worth is it would be worth the effort to sand and finish it with the oil. It will look great and you won't be worrying about the health issue.
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