I use linseed oil on my hives, and haven't had any problems. I just slap it on with a paintbrush, and wipe the excess off after half an hour with a rag. I thought you could get combustion of rags from Boiled Linseed Oil? As it's faster drying the reaction is faster and more heat is generated. Anyway either dunk your cloths in water, or lay them out flat (pref. outside). I stand my paintbrushes upside down in a glass jar.
The wood soaks it up on the first application - normally I'd put two on the first time I use it.
Here's a brand new one glued, finished and oiled.
Here's it is later in the season!
I reckon you'd get two seasons without refinishing.