Well, the wax finish can be used, but the wood needs to be treated first. The wheel is made of New Zealand Silver Birch, which is a light colored wood with some pinkish tones. I'd like it to be a little darker, but ebony, walnut and chestnut are all darker than I want. Something closer to a natural cherry would be nice. I did a test with the teak oil, and while it brought out the grain nicely, it didn't really seem to soak into the wood. So off to the local big box hardware store. I know there are probably better choices in where to find furniture finishing stuff, but with the current heat wave still going strong, I just don't feel like trying to track something down. (I swear, a couple of days ago it was sooooo hot, wearing clothes hurt!)
Part of what I don't like about shopping at the bb hardware store for this stuff is that none of the help there really knows anymore than I do about furniture finishing - so I'm on my own. After reading little cans of oils and stains, and looking at the little colored wood samples, in either oak or pine only btw, I finally decide to just use tung oil, and then finish up with the wax finish.
Applying the tung oil took a lot longer than I expected, but all the pieces, except 3 of the bobbins, had the first coat applied yesterday. Since the bobbins are the only bits that come into contact with the fiber, I wasn't sure if I should put any finish on them at all. I decided to try just one and see how things went. Today I'm driving my cousins up to LAX, so I don't know if I'll have time to apply the recommended second coat today or not. Instructions on the wax finish say the oil coat has to dry for 72 hours before applying, so maybe by this weekend I can actually try my hand at spinning. The pics show the bits after the first coat of tung oil, you can see the unfinished bobbins next to the wheel, and the pinkish tint is seen on the leg pieces.
All this has me toying with the idea of designing and building my own spinning wheel. I'd love to come up with something a little more modern, to blend in with more contemporary furnishing, and perhaps easily portable as well. Whether or not this idea goes anywhere remains to be seen.