Whether to add protective coating to a wooden work bench is a matter of debate among woodworkers. Many believe the best surface to work on is raw wood and applying a coating makes it more slippery. If you decide to coat your workbench, follow these simple steps to keep it in top condition.
Step 1 - Prepare the Surface
Before applying a new coat of stain, you need to remove any existing paint or sealants from the surface of the wood. Use a solvent to make removal of old spots of paint and glue easier and ease them off with a chisel or putty knife. Once you have cleaned the surface, remove any nicks or other damage that result from normal workbench usage, with a belt sander.
Step 2 - Paint or Stain
Apply two thin, even coats of your chosen paint or wood stain making sure to leave the first coat to dry completely before applying the second.
Step 3 - Seal and Finish
If your bench is outside, you should apply a coat of waterproof sealant once the second coat of paint or stain has dried. Otherwise, apply a couple of coats of sealant to protect the surface from any small accidental damage. Once the sealant has dried, a coating of wax or linseed oil can be applied to make it easy to wipe up any future spillages.