Hope you wore gloves, Tim
Steel wool will leave little bits of steel in the grain- I just proved it again (as if I needed to do it yet again
) today. Even lightly rubbing a black walnut stock with 0000 steel wool left bits, and I changed the steel wool often. All I wanted to do was remove some type of varnish-like finish from an old stock to prep for a BLO finish, and was using odorless mineral spirits. Two hours and I'm only half done...
Anyway, I reverted back to my old stand-by: very fine scotchbrite. I'll be getting a needle and a magnifying glass to pick out a few bits of steel wool tomorrow morning.
To each his own but I won't try steel wool ever again