How to Use a Preservative Product on Mexican Pine Furniture

Updated November 21, 2016

Mexican pine furniture is characterised by its distinctive style and rustic appearance. While generally associated with log cabins, southwestern styles or ranch-type themes, Mexican pine pieces add a pastoral touch to any decor. Though Mexican pine is prized for its durability, if it exposed to excess moisture, it is prone to rot, like all wood. You can avoid this unfortunate situation by a simple application of linseed oil. A natural preservative, linseed oil will bring out the warm, golden tones of the pine while protecting and waterproofing the wood.

Mix 2 tsp of mild liquid dish-washing soap into 2 cups of warm water. Stir the solution briskly until soap suds form. Apply the soap solution to the furniture with the damp cloth, washing away any dirt, dust or other matter. Sponge with clear water to rinse. Rub with a towel to dry.

Pour 2 cups of boiled linseed oil into a glass bowl. Add 1 cup of turpentine and stir well. While wood can be finished in pure linseed oil, the turpentine thins the oil, making it easier for the wood to absorb it, effectively reducing drying time.

Apply the linseed oil with a soft cloth, using short, firm strokes that follow the grain of the wood. Working in small sections, gradually move from the top of the furniture to the bottom. Let the oil soak into the wood for 20 minutes.

Rub the wood gently with a clean cloth to remove any excess oil, then lightly buff the surface with a piece of coarse cloth or #0000 steel wool. This will pave the way for the application of additional layers of linseed oil. Let the furniture air dry for 24 to 48 hours.

Apply a second coat of linseed oil once the initial coat is completely dry. Up to 20 coats can be added at any given time, but be sure to wipe away the excess oil, buff the surface and allow it to dry between each layer.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 tsp mild, liquid dish-washing soap
  • Soft cloths
  • Towels
  • 2 cups boiled linseed oil
  • 1 cup turpentine
  • Glass bowl
  • Coarse cloth or #0000 steel wool
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About the Author

Lisa Parris is a writer and former features editor of "The Caldwell County News." Her work has also appeared in the "Journal of Comparative Parasitology," "The Monterey County Herald" and "The Richmond Daily News." In 2012, Parris was honored with awards from the Missouri Press Association for best feature story, best feature series and best humor series.