I have been making wooden wallets, primarily out of wenge, but am having trouble finding the finish I want. I’m looking for something smooth, natural-looking, and moisture-resistant. Sanding to 400-grit before applying Howard’s Feed-N-Wax gets me pretty much where I want to be on the first two criteria, but it is woefully inadequate on the moisture resistance: one afternoon in a shirt pocket in Tennessee’s early summer is enough to let enough moisture in to lift the grain a little, creating rough patches.
My next thought is to try a solvent-based wax like Bri-Wax, which should—I think—give more protection. I may need to apply that after treating with oil (e.g. mineral oil), but I won’t if it doesn’t seem necessary–I’d rather keep some of the contrast in the brown and black stripe of the wenge, which can be diminished after oiling.
Anyway, before I start working my way through a bunch of products on spec, I thought I’d ask you all if you have any tips. (BTW, I’ve already tried shellac and various polyurethanes products, but those varnishy looks are definitely not what I’m hoping for.) Thanks!