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Gilding a wooden carved sign: golden leaf over polyurethane?

Discussion in 'Tips & Tricks' started by nolanola, Jul 31, 2020 at 4:57 PM.

  1. nolanola

    nolanola Member

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    Hello forum.
    We are making an outdoor sign for our friend's bookstore.
    Is applying golden leaf over an oil based polyurethane is correct?
    The temperature there is between -20F and 80F.
    It's spanish cedar, the wood will be stained with oil based stain.

    Thank you.
     

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  2. rossmosh

    rossmosh Active Member

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    I'd look into clear marine epoxy resin for the clear/sealer coat. Then let it cure all the way. Then you can scuff the V-carved sections, apply your size, then gold leaf.
     
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  3. Billct2

    Billct2 Major Contributor

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    I agree. If it's going to have to have a natural wood stain finish I would clear the whole thing with a 2 part marine clear. Only thing I have used that holds up. Is the outline getting painted? (and don't clear over the finished sign, the only time gold leaf should be cleared is on a vehicle, or glass)
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2020 at 11:52 AM
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  4. nolanola

    nolanola Member

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    Yes, the outline will be painted black with one shot.
    Is there a brand of epoxy clear you can recommend?
     

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  5. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

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    Black outlines on glass look good, but I'm not sure about a board. I'd sooner see the outer edge painted black with a gold border and all gold letters. Since you already have the letter outlined, think about a hue of something nearby where the sign is gonna hang or be attached. Take that color and either lighten it or darken it to set off the letter and fit the background better.


    Accordimg to your picture, you're gonna stain the wood a darker color. Do that first, than clear it, but don't use a sealer. Your stain will act as a kinda sealer. As for the clear, I like oil-based urathanes. Probably 3, mabye 4 coats...... and don't use a high gloss, try a satin of some degree.
     
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  6. Johnny Best

    Johnny Best Very Active Member

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  7. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

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    This is more along the lines I was thinking. The outline on the letters would be some surrounding color and then altered to fit. gilded.jpg
     
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  8. nolanola

    nolanola Member

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    Thank you!
    That's what I ordered.
    We use the west system for gluing.
     
  9. Johnny Best

    Johnny Best Very Active Member

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    An epoxy finish will yellow if put on sign for exterior use.
     
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  10. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

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    He's right. You only clear it on fire engines and things which will take a lotta abuse. You can clear the board itself, before you gild it. Guess I took that for granted.
     
  11. nolanola

    nolanola Member

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    It's polyurethane vs epoxy than.
    Right?
     
  12. Johnny Best

    Johnny Best Very Active Member

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    You should go with AWlgrip, Polyester Urethane, will not yellow outdoors, two part mix and get some brush additive thinner. Years ago I use to do mahogany sideboards for a boat yard. They would give me the board with about 3 coats of varnish on them sanded glass smooth. I would gold leaf them, before computers, outline the gold leaf and give them back to the yard, they would put about 2 or 3 more coats of varnish on them. They would last for years until boat got sold and renamed. Mahogany transoms would be accomplished the same way. Now most boat yards us Awlgrip clear instead of varnish. Holds up better.
     
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  13. Billct2

    Billct2 Major Contributor

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    I've used the two part clear on mahogany it it held up for many years
     
  14. nolanola

    nolanola Member

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    What type of clear did you use?
     
  15. Billct2

    Billct2 Major Contributor

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    I don't remember the brand. Got it at the marine supply store, it may have been awl-grip.
     

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