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Treating wood with solvent

I'm in the midst of building a cabinet out of pine. I was hand planing some panels today and was having problems with sap around the knots. I tried wiping the wood down with mineral spirits. The difference was amazing. The wood planed very cleanly and tear out almost disappeared. I've heard of treating carving wood with solvent to help deal with tear out. Has anyone done this? Did you brush the solvent on or how did you apply it. Did it help?


Russell Wagner has reacted to this post.
Russell Wagner

I have not tried this but it sounds fantastic.  How did you apply it, with a rag or brush or what?  Did you put enough on to soak it, or just a wipe on the surface, or how much there?  I am all questions now.!

My intent was just to get rid of the tackyness from the sap so I put some mineral spirits on a rag and wiped off the wood surface.

Cathy Paschane has reacted to this post.
Cathy Paschane

I have heard of carvers putting alcohol on the wood surface to soften it and I wonder if the effect is similar.

it has been awhile but we used turpentine. but that was sprayed on the blade of a mill saw to cut thru pine boards. plus used on the router bits to finish edges of the boards, not sure what it would do with a carving or tear outs but the reason was the same sap buildup. I know from that time it worked great . I have to say I don't have any in my garage at this time but i do have mineral spirits.


I just looked this up and it may change things a bit i have no clue.  Mineral spirits is created from oil where turpentine is from pine trees. You may get an oil buildup, or color change from the mineral spirits, if so  try the other .

will have to try that we get a lot of pine logs around here in south florida.

good luck to you all


Cathy Paschane has reacted to this post.
Cathy Paschane