What kind of raw linseed oil to use on wooden tool handles?

I “installed” a few new handles in 3 broken spades that i have collected over the years of braking them.

I want to oil the new handles.

Linseed oil seems like the right tool for the job.

You can get boiled linseedoil that would dry faster. Nowadays though it is usualy not boiled, but metal-salts are added as a catalist to “fake” the boiled linseed effect.

some people use these and are happy with the results.

I however would prefure to go without the additives.
If your lucky you might find some truely boiled linseed oil. (without the additives, boiling it yourself seems dangerous (explosions extreeme heat, oil burn wounds are nasty)

Still the boiling will make it dry faster, and thus probably soak into the wood less.

The raw stuff thus has my preference. I usualy get it in the grocery store for 3euro for 1/8th gallon. Food grade. Not the cheapest ever. but for 3 euro i can use it on a lot of wood for years to go. And i don’t need to pay expensive shipping from an online store.

However here comes the “problem”
There are 2 versions of the raw foodgrade linseed oil.

#1 for baking whith (baking oils usualy have a higher smoke point) (suitable to heat to 240 c =464 f)
91g/100ml fat
5.8g saturated
71g unsaturated (monounsaturated)
14g polyunsaturated

extra information
3.3g linolenic acid (omega 3)

#2 for cold and warm use (but not frying or baking) use. (suitable to heat to 180 c = 356 f)
90.2g/100ml fat
6.2g saturated
59g unsaturated (monounsaturated)
25g polyunsaturated

extra information
7.3g linolenic acid (omega 3)

Which one would you use?
Im leaning towards the second. It seems to me that the more unsaturated connections will form more and thus stronger crosslinks and thus a “stronger” coat/hardening. But will also “absorb” more oxygen and thus lead to more swelling in the wood.

Id think #2 has less Oleic acid and more Linoleic acid

The handles are european ash.

Also, would you use a solvent like terpentine or alchohol to thin the oil?, and help it penetrate deeper into the wood? Which solvent would have your preference?

Here are some links that might be usefull




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During “Fire Prevention Week” when I was in grade school, Junior Fire Marshals were cautioned not to store oily rags in open containers. This is why:

o The oxidation of linseed oil is exothermic, which may lead to spontaneous combustion.


Personally I would use everclear alcohol to thin it and would use the second one with higher linoleic acid and if you are not against it tung and linseed work well together.

It’s crazy how warm your rag gets when you are rubbing on linseed oil


Tried & True Danish Oil Finish Danish Oil - Tried & True
I like to 50/50 Danish oil with paint thinner, but you can probably use denatured alcohol.