I'm a newbie to woodwork and surprised myself by successfully creating an even Black Japan stain on some Tasmanian Oak. I then decided to finish it with Danish Oil. Somehow I arrived at the decision to brush on a heavy coat of the oil and leave it until it dries. A week later the wood has an inconsistent tacky/ gummy and shiny finish and the grain seems to have risen. I've read that wiping down the surface daily with mineral turpentine or methylated spirits will eventually remove the tacky surface. The issue is that the wood is also stained and in the small section I tried this on the turps stripped about 25% of the stain.

TLDR: What can I do to remove the tacky/ gummy Danish Oil finish from Oak without removing the stain?



Stained and Oiled:

Oiled Oiled2

  • This is also cross-posted at woodworking.se
    – Chris H
    Jan 8, 2017 at 8:36
  • 1
    it's been 9 months now. Did you manage to solve this? Sep 7, 2017 at 20:58
  • I tried all types of solvents and techniques but called it off and started from scratch. I did a good job the second time by applying the oil fast, wiping off excess in one stroke and then leaving it for a day before repeating. I realised why it was so difficult in the end - I was staining before using Danish oil. I should have put the stain into the oil. Oct 19, 2017 at 22:43
  • The second time around I sanded all the mill marks away and sanded between coats of danish oil. It was arduous but came out great. Oct 19, 2017 at 22:44

1 Answer 1


A 4-inch wide razor scraper might remove much of the dried oil. Hold it lightly and at a small angle to the surface. But you will have to be careful to avoid letting a corner of the scraper dig into the wood.

  • Seems likely to cause scratching Jan 8, 2017 at 1:31

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