Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: Finish for ash Baseball Bat???

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Mountainburg, AR
    Posts
    2,498
    Blog Entries
    2

    Finish for ash Baseball Bat???

    I took a class at Woodcraft on how to turn a baseball bat. Now don't laugh, I know that a baseball bat is a pretty easy turning project, but hey, it's hard when you don't know what your doing and afraid of how you might injure yourself. Anyway, I learned quite a bit about turning and I now have a baseball bat sans a finish.
    I will be giving this bat to my son who will be displaying it on a wall in his office, so it won't be used to hit a baseball or anything like that. At first I thought I would just put a couple of coats of waterbased poly on it, but before I did that I thought I would as if maybe there was a better choice.

    Larry
    Larry J Browning
    There are 10 kinds of people in this world; Those who understand binary and those who don't.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Dallas, Tx.
    Posts
    1,335

    Many choices

    Larry, since it is for display, you can do a number of things. An oil base finish will bring out an amber in it. You need to figure what sheen you'd like. You could use toungue-oil. Lacquer would be a good choice. Is it made of ash? I'd use a satin coat of something if it were me. Anything you use will look good.
    Phil in Big D
    The only difference between a taxidermist and the taxman, is that the taxidermist leaves the skin. Mark Twain

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Green Bay, WI
    Posts
    10
    Larry,

    I make baseball bats for a local college wood bat league here in GB, and I have found shellac to be the best finish, when you combine ease of application, looks and durability. Unfortunately, the bats do get wet, which can impact the finish, but they have usually been knocked around for a while anyway.
    For display, I would recommend lacquer on top of the shellac. Shellac gives it the yellow tint, and the lacquer gives it the high shine and finished look.
    It is interesting that the bats that have no finish on them do not get used. I asked one of the players why, and he said they were afraid to ruin the wood! Apparently, they think the microthin coating of shellac is protecting the wood from the ball!
    Another option would be to dip the bat in colored lacquer. I have never actually tried this myself, but I understand that this is the method the "real" bat makers use to get the various colors...

    Don

  4. #4
    Larry,

    I know you are proud of your bat. I was when I completed my first.

    Recently one of my fellow turners and I completed an order for 9 Purple Heart bats. These were laminated. The bats were finished with High Gloss Polyurethane. They were to be awared to High School senior baseball players. They were to be overlaid with white designating the players school colors, the school name, the player's name and number.

    I have made several others and have had no failures in finishes.

    Joe Kelly

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Mountainburg, AR
    Posts
    2,498
    Blog Entries
    2
    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Kelly
    Larry,

    I know you are proud of your bat. I was when I completed my first.

    Recently one of my fellow turners and I completed an order for 9 Purple Heart bats. These were laminated. The bats were finished with High Gloss Polyurethane. They were to be awared to High School senior baseball players. They were to be overlaid with white designating the players school colors, the school name, the player's name and number.

    I have made several others and have had no failures in finishes.

    Joe Kelly
    Joe,
    Actually I think I can do better with the next one. I got the barrel a little too small and there a couple of gouges in it that I think I can sand out. But the biggest mistake is a very large chip out of the knob. I think I wil try to fix these mistakes with some wood filler, but if it doesn't come out to my satisfaction, I think I will try to do another one on my own.
    I think I will try to spray on a high gloss acrilic poly. Maybe, I will do like Norm and call this one the prototype.
    Larry J Browning
    There are 10 kinds of people in this world; Those who understand binary and those who don't.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Odessa, Texas
    Posts
    1,567

    French Polish for Display???

    Just wondering if anyone has ever applied French Polish while still on the lathe, for a Display Bat? Seems like that OR that Gunstock Finish would be easily applied as the bat turns on the lathe, and would give a really slick finish without having that thick clear Plastic Look that Poly sometimes gives unless a lot of hand rubbing is applied afterward.
    "Some Mistakes provide Too many Learning Opportunities to Make only Once".

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Dayton, TX
    Posts
    3,173
    Your question has been answered, so this is just an interesting side note about bat finishes.
    My high school baseball coach bought unfinished bats. We then took a coke bottle and rubbed the outside pressing as hard as we could to mash the grain. Then we varnished them. It certainly made the bat hard on the surface, they sounded different when you hit the ball, and I never noticed a blemish on any of those bats.

    Ernie

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Odessa, Texas
    Posts
    1,567
    Quote Originally Posted by Ernie Nyvall
    Your question has been answered, so this is just an interesting side note about bat finishes.
    My high school baseball coach bought unfinished bats. We then took a coke bottle and rubbed the outside pressing as hard as we could to mash the grain. Then we varnished them. It certainly made the bat hard on the surface, they sounded different when you hit the ball, and I never noticed a blemish on any of those bats.

    Ernie
    I guess that was kind of "Case Hardening" wood??
    "Some Mistakes provide Too many Learning Opportunities to Make only Once".

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    La Habra Hts., CA
    Posts
    702
    I have been making a few ash bats and I use spray Laquer as a finish-- I also have the grandkids names engraved with a laser-- Makes a special birthday gift For chip-out I use sanding dust and CA glue.
    Jerry

Similar Threads

  1. Tung Oil, BLO, Danish Oil - is there a difference
    By Roger Barga in forum Project Finishing
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 11-12-2012, 2:15 PM
  2. Thoughts on my projects finish
    By John Lubeski in forum Project Finishing
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 06-19-2008, 5:52 PM
  3. Super Durable, High Gloss Finish??
    By Mike Tempel in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 10-04-2004, 6:08 PM
  4. Finish Question on that Sewing Machine.
    By Dennis Peacock in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 08-19-2004, 1:41 PM
  5. Tung Oil Finish Practicality
    By Jim Young in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: 08-07-2003, 1:54 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •