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Finishing - Drain Tubes - Mounting


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I too use Darryl's method with a few variations:

As it relates to having a stand to hold your PVC tubes..............I have three "U" shaped pipe clamps mounted on a board. As most of my rods are three piece, I mount an appropriate length of pipe under each U-clamp, C-clamp the board to the side of my work bench, fill with varnish, and drown each section. Both tips go into one of the tubes. When is all is said and done, I remove the sections, turn off the spigot, cap the tubes, remove the C-clamps and put this high tech apparatus in the corner, out of the way (or just leave it clamped to the work bench).

As it relates to drainage, I place a PVC coupling that accepts a spigot on one end of each tube. A PVC spigot is then screwed into the coupling. In this way, I can regulate the drainage rate, and don't have to worry about drilling the right size hole for the proper (or current) viscosity. When all varnish has drained, simply turn off the spigot. One word of caution. Before using the spigot, take it apart and remove the rubber washer. The spigot still functions properly (the residual varnish acts as a washer), but there is no longer any danger of a rubber washer deteriorating, and becoming little black specks in your varnish.

As it relates to leaving the sections in the tube and covering with a cloth.  I do leave sections in the tube. I see no reason to take them out since they are in a closed environment (my work area is 1/2 of my garage, so a sterile environment it is not). I don't need to look at them. If there's a problem, I'll deal with it before the next coat. For suspending the sections, I cut 2" X 2" pieces of Plexiglas,  drill the appropriate size holes to accept the male ferrule, put a little piece of masking tape on the top side (insurance), and dunk. For the butt section, I generally use a spent Scotch tape dispenser. The hole in the center is big enough to slip over the  stripping guide  (if you're varnishing with guides on), and it generally snugs up against the grip real nice. If your grip is undersized, it can be built up with masking tape. The Plexiglas (or the spent tape dispenser) does two things........it provides a way to visibly observe your drain rate (adjusted with the spigot), and it covers the top of the tube eliminating the need to cover with a cloth. I have no problem with cloth, but I've never seen any without lint.   (Bob Marbert)

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