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  • Need Staining Advise

    I'm finishing up a project made from poplar and dreading the final phase because all my previous attempts to stain poplar have turned into splotchy messes. I figured this time I would use sanding sealer to smooth out porosity, but when I went to buy some the directions said not to stain after application and final sanding. I need some ideas. Have any of you stained after sanding sealer? What about gel stains? Any help would be most appreciated.

    Mark

  • #2
    What do you want it to end up looking like, Mark? Also, how big a thing is it, some methods are easy on small pieces but not on large.

    Dave

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    • #3
      Their pretty large bookcases (two). I want them to look like dark cherry (mohogany).

      Mark

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      • #4
        For dark, water-based dye is nice choice. It would show up glue lines, you have to find those and nuke them first.

        Grain should usually be raised first. But in this circumstance, I would dye, sand back the raised grain, them dye again with the same dyestock. I've had very even results this way stock that didn't want to color evenly any other way.

        I find gel stains to be some of work to put on evenly. On pieces as large as bookcases, I would be too lazy to do that.

        I have a little web information on dyes if you are interested and haven't used them before.

        Dave

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        • #5
          Dave, I would be very interested in your information on dyes. I am not at all knowlegable(sp?) about dyes, but I have worked quite a bit with various oil based stains. Just the idea of water-based stains bothers me, even though I should know better, but I am very interested in learning more about dyes.
          Bill

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          • #6
            Dave, Like Bill I have no experience with dyes. I've seen them in the catalogues and been tempted but never tried. Wouldn't results with a dye be similar as with a stain and discolor (get darker and splotchy)as a function of variations in porosity?

            If not, I'm on it.

            Mark

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            • #7
              I too would be interested in the info on the dyes.

              Also, what kind of gloves should you use when putting on shellac, dyes, etc. Would any of these dissolve regular surgical-style gloves?

              Thanks,
              Michael

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              • #8
                The difference is the difference between pigment stain and dye stain.

                In pigment stains, the "pieces" of color are relatively large. Woods that blotch have that problem because parts are porous enough to hold a lots of the pieces, but other parts are not.

                Dyes have very, very small "pieces". Very few things are non-porous enough to keep them out (glass is one of the few things dye won't stain well).

                Application and use of dye stains are completely different than pigment or combination (dye and pigment) stains. This is a little demo I made on a technique, but it contains within it commentary on dye application. I welcome any questions about it, because I would kinda like to make a dye application page to itself. http://users2.ev1.net/~arbuckle/antique/Antiquing.html

                Dave

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                • #9
                  Mark,

                  I agree with Dave on the dye. I made my grand-daughter a bookcase to match her "cherry" bedroom suite. I made it out of birch and poplar. I used a water based dye first which turned the wood a purplish tint and then covered with 2 codes of minwax's red mahogony and then their fast drying poly. The bookcase matched the other furniture almost perfectly.

                  Bob R

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                  • #10
                    I appreciate the insight and experience Dave and Bob. Sounds like dye is the way to go. The antiquing tutorial was really cool Dave. I've got a piece of poplar stock I'm experimenting with to develop the finishing process. I'll show a picture when finished.

                    Mark

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