Art Factory Fine Art Finish Procedures

Nowhere is fine hand-craftsmanship more evident than in the broad range of hand rubbed finishes and textures found on all Scottsdale Art Factory (SAF) hand built fine art custom doors, gates, and furniture. From the initial hand-sanding to the final hand-rubbing, each piece is subject to our world class rigorous standards. Only after a piece meets a strict final inspection for clarity, depth of color, and consistency does it bear the name H. J. Nick By Scottsdale Art Factory.

The company's meticulous multi - step, fine art, age old tried and tested finishing process is the reason why our finishes are considered the best in the world. Every finishing step is grain and panel - matched for color consistency to the customer's request or approved sample.

The Steps to Fine Finishing To Fine World Class Standards

  • Pre-Inspection
    A well trained technician's use of a hand-held magnifying lamp during visual inspections will expose natural minor defects for touch-up or replacement before the piece reaches finishing.

  • Hand-Sanding
    Only a careful and thorough hand-sanding using a proprietary multi-level process can provide the depth and clarity of a SAF finished product.

  • Reinspection
    A complete reinspection confirms the piece is ready for a simple or multi-step process color application.

  • Toner
    SAF's NGR (non-grain raising) toner provides the piece with an even base coat and color for balance of the finishing process.

  • Fuming
    Fuming is a grain matched wood finishing process that darkens wood and brings out the grain pattern. It consists of exposing the wood to fumes for many hours from a strong aqueous solution of ammonium hydroxide which reacts with the tannins in the wood. Fuming has an advantage over staining in that it does not obscure the grain, it just darkens it. Unlike staining, there is no possibility of blotches or runs. Fuming also has color fast shellac rubbed for additional definition of grains.

  • Wash Coat Sand
    Wash coat sanding removes excess wash coat and dust particles to prepare the surface area for the wiping glaze.

  • Glaze Application
    This stage of the finishing process provides the foundation of the desired color, with each piece closely examined and stained to match.

  • Color Inspection
    The finish is fine-tuned using color tints to match a precise color standard on solid natural timber before clear coats are applied. Highlighting, antiquing, raised graining, multi-coloring and feathering require additional time and cost.

  • Drying Oven
    The state of the art drying ovens extract solvents and cure the glaze consistently.

  • Sealer Application
    The first barrier between wood and lacquer, the sealer acts as a primer to stabilize the solid wood grain.

  • Sealer Oven
    This oven cures the sealer with temperatures reaching 110-115°F for several hours.

  • Sealer Sanding
    This step smooths out grain that may have raised during previous finish steps, and prepares the surface for lacquer or other final applications.

  • Lacquer (1st Coat)
    The first coat of lacquer is a crucial building block in all of our finishes except for oil application where this coat serves as the final coat.

  • Drying Oven
    The third drying step cures the first coat of lacquer or oil evenly.

  • Inspection and Extra Fine Sanding
    This critical step assures that the piece is ready for its second coat of lacquer.

  • Lacquer or Oil (2nd Coat)
    The foundation is now set for the final coat of lacquer or oil.

  • Drying Oven
    This fourth step cures the lacquer or oil finish evenly.

  • Inspection
    This level of inspection is the finishing department's last opportunity to make any finish adjustments.

  • Lacquer Oil or Wax (3rd Coat)
    This final top coat application provides the piece with the sound surface protection that our fine art furniture and custom door customers are looking for.

  • Drying Oven
    The SAF air curtain and enclosed dryer oven prevent dust from contaminating the final finish coat.

  • Inspection
    After each piece air dries on its curing time, an SAF rubbing specialist inspects it for world class quality assurance, and to determine the best method(s) for rubbing.

  • Hand-Rubbing with Steel Wool
    A rubbing specialist makes any necessary adjustments to ensure consistency and accuracy.

  • Inspection and Final Hand-Rubbing with Wax
    To take the process a step further, a final application of wax gives each piece a smooth, consistent surface, highlighting the wood tones.

Special Match System -- If required, SAF can match the finish of your new furnishing to a family treasure or other pre-existing item in your home. As long as a sample is provided, we can develop a finish, document it for our records, and provide you with a sample on the exact wood your product is being built from for your final approval. An identification number is assigned and recorded in our system in the event the same finish is required on a future purchase.

One of the greatest attributes of SAF custom finish products is our ability to create unlimited world-class finishes in an unprecedented array of colors and textures, unlike most custom manufacturers.

Learn more about our Fine Art Finishes for custom wood and iron products.

Custom Product Information - Learn more about our custom manufacturing process.