Boos quality control lacking
I just received and installed a new custom size Boos island top in edge-grain maple and was shocked when we opened the box and found that the top of the board had been planed and filled, but NOT sanded or oiled. This despite the fact that it was ordered with an oil finish. Boos required us to specify the finish.
It wasn't difficult to sand it smooth and oil it, and was preferable to sending it back and waiting another 6 weeks for it to be finished or replaced, but still. It took us 2 days because sanding took off a very thin slice of the top that we then had to fill ourselves.
That's terrible QC!
Yes, stuff happens. Still, missing the last two steps in the process is pretty major, don't you think?
I've sent email to the supplier I purchased from, they'll be passing the word along to Boos. All I've asked for is a bottle of Mystery oil to replace the bottle of mineral oil I used. I have every expectation Boos will come through.
Now you're wondering why I posted. Mostly because I was completely gobsmacked that this happened. Forget to sand one edge, no big deal. Forget the oil coat, ok, I'll deal with it. But NO sanding at all? It wasn't just finish sanding. Seriously, all Boos did was plane it and fill it.
I seem to recall that Boos literature made reference to the fact that their oil finished, end grain butcher block 'slabs' would arrive in need of oil treatment upon arrival. In fact, I believe their recommendation was to coat all sides, edges, etc prior to installation so we were prepared with a couple bottles of their Mystery Oil.
Our 20 sq.ft. 4" thick surface absorbed one entire bottle like a sponge. After the first treatment the wood grain swelled enough that we used a few fine (000) steel wool pads to remove the raised burrs and then finished with a 3M scrubby pad. Not at all difficult but then we had no defects in need of any filler.
We followed an old adage for raw butcher block of oiling it immediately upon arrival, then once a week for 4 weeks, then once a month for a year. Aside from nightly wipe downs we scrub it weekly using a 3M pad with kosher salt and distilled vinegar but the oil applications have diminished to maybe every other month.
Upon arrival the maple was extremely blond but it has darkened substantially and the surface resists any watermarks. It is absolutely smooth, a pleasure to cut on and using 3M scrubs following an oil treatment help to minimize the appearance of recent cutting grooves in the top surface.
It seems when choosing Boos oil finish option you are committing to a regime of care and treatments for the flexibility of that restorative finish. The other option of a hard sealed finish will prove less work but when defaced by cutting grooves or burn marks the options for restoration start with sanding off the entire finish before correcting affected areas and then refinishing.
I previously had a custom Boos end grain 3" thick maple block embedded in a countertop. Yes, it did need oiling. But it had already been oiled once at the factory, and it was completely smooth, all sides.
My new edge-grain counter was quite rough on all sides. It didn't just need fine sanding, I worked down from a medium grit steel wool to fine 0000. The only way to discern top from bottom on the block was by noting that only one side had imperfections filled.
I did not sand again after oiling. My understanding is that oil doesn't raise wood grain, water does. My board is as silky smooth after 2 coats of oil as it was when the sanding was completed.