Millwork Wood Species

Pine: Pine is a soft wood that is very commonly used in interior applications. It doesn’t have the most interesting grain pattern and doesn’t take stain very well, so it’s best to use it only when you intend to paint the finished product. Simply put, wood conditioner is a far less risky alternative, and the companies themselves clue you in to which types of stains may need it by marketing it together with those particular stains. Recently I made a cabinet with doors out of poplar and the doors warped rather severely after about 3 months. On may poplar boards the difference between heartwood and sapwood is even more pronounced. I seriously suspect that there are other issues at hand involving the poplar you have used.

Hard woods such as oak and mahogany will develop a darker bluish-gray color while softer woods such as pine, poplar and birch develop a lighter weathered gray color. A: It will come as no surprise that painting them black will be much easier than refinishing them, and you would need to, because stain does not go through finish. Cherry is a very popular and all-around great wood; easy to work with, stains and finishes well with just oil, and ages beautifully.

It is a very soft hardwood that has a janka hardness of 300, which is almost 30 times weaker than Ipe wood. Notice that the gel stain is much less blotchy than the penetrating stain especially when the grain is raised. Not only is this hard on the environment, it drives the price of the wood so high that making furniture out of it is out of the question for most woodworkers. When working with any clear finish, be sure to check the work as you apply the finish.

This wood is worth mentioning because it is very common at your local home center and it’s so inexpensive you’ll probably be tempted to make something with it. Our preferred method for finishing poplar is applying two coats of an oil-base primer and 2 coats of a 100% acrylic finish. Take a higher grit sandpaper (i.e. 320 grit or higher) and lightly sand the wood after the first coat of stain has dried. Wipe with the grain, working quickly and applying the stain evenly without overlapping. When it starts getting too thick to work, or when you are sure the pores are packed, remove the excess filler from the surface of the wood.

I had no idea how the Driftwood Weathering Wood Finish would react to this wooden chair and once I had applied it, as you can see, I became apprehensive as within a few minutes I was getting a lot of different colors and a lot of brown tones. The generally accepted rule is to use poplar in applications where it will not show, will be painted, or covered by a heavily pigmented stain. However, once the final coat has dried, take an old towel and buff the finish to a glossy shine.

I’m relatively new to woodworking, so I’ve been using poplar because it’s cheap, and I won’t feel as bad if I mess something up and end up with firewood. If you can get some white poplar without the mineral streaks,it wouldn’t be difficult to dye it with an amber color to look like the color of birch but the grain pattern is something else.I believe you would be farther ahead to use birch. Popular for wood floors and staircases, oak has a distinctive look that is most often used with a protective seal or light stain.

One thing when working out tests with the dye is that it’s appearance on the wood is very different from what happens when a top coat is applied. OK, once it’s sanded, blow or wipe off the sawdust before you stain it. I like Minwax stains, but you’re going to need a final varnish over that, as Minwax stain isn’t really protective, it’s only for color. You can leave it natural or use a pastel stain for a light colored finish or stain it with a dark stain to simulate cherry, walnut or mahogany. With the gel stain, I LIBERALLY apply it and try to keep the section I’m working on wet. In reality most wood species are naturally acidic, so the surface wood fibres being left acidic won’t matter to them.

But recently I’ve found all sorts of interesting grain patterns and colors, in such a variety that it makes me wonder if there’s something else mixed in. The local lumber store has some pretty lousy poplar boards that are vomit green, white, and white with vomit green. The Old Masters Wiping Stain is not a gel, but is a fairly thick wipe-on oil stain that can be used on wood, fiberglas, etc.

Driftwood Weathering Wood Finish is available in single size (1 envelope w/2 packets); 2-Pak size (2 envelopes w/4 packets); or 5-Pak size (1 box w/10 packets). Because sanding sealer builds fast and sands easily, some folks try to use it as pore filler, building up coat after coat and sanding it back until the wood pores are filled. Among other considerations, the color of the wood used influences the final appearance.

If you shellac before the stain (called a wash coat of shellac), it will partially seal the wood and the stain will not penetrate as much. In the close-up photo below, note the partly bleached wood compared to the darker band of intact wood, and the amazing black zone lines. I will probably go for a dark wood look, maybe espresso’ish… I’ll have to ask the wife what she wants. Find the professional stainers by using my Interior Painting & Staining Checklist I offer a 100% Money Back Guarantee. If you can, try to buy wood from a sustainable forest (commercial tree farms that ensure the supply of the wood).

Sealing the wood prior to filling makes cleaning off the excess filler easier and is a good precaution when applying oil-based filler to mahogany. There is really only one situation in which you should use pore filler; when you want a glass smooth finish on a wood that has prominent deep pores. It’s a stable wood that’s widely used as structural and shaping members in the manufacturing of stuffed furniture, as in sofas and chairs. Wet-sand the finish with 600- grit sandpaper, and then rub it out with rubbing compound.

I would do samples from the wood in the project and finish them with the final finish whatever that may be, as it will look different than with just the stain or dye. Gel stains dry somewhat hard, from the added resin content, but all are still extremely fragile and soft compared to varnish or other film finishes. You have many coats (some might be too thick) and you applied the stain over varnish which keeps the oil and pigment suspended on a hard surface rather than being mostly absorbed into the wood grain. It stains well, but its large pores make it difficult to achieve a smooth finish.

Pay attention to the instructions as they often state that any wood treated with the conditioner should be stained within two hours. Minwax Pre-Stain wood conditioner is one, another is dewaxed Zinsser Sanding Sealer cut 50% with Denatured Alcohol. You want a smooth base for the finish, whatever it is. The specific finish schedule would determine what needs to be done specifically. But this too is unnecessary, and in addition can have unintended effects on some species, changing the colour of the wood slightly. Whether you stain before or after filling depends largely on the look you are seeking.

By doing this, many of the stain pigment particles that create the actual color are not allowed to soak deeply into the wood. In spite of this, walnut is still a great wood to work with and lends itself nicely for use as accents and inlays to dress up a project. If you carefully fill the grain with paste wood filler, you can give white oak a high-gloss finish. Taking the time to fine sand until the wood surface is super smooth also is the foundation to achieving a silky surface after the final coats of finish are applied. In this sample you can see that I intentionally left lighter and darker areas to simulate the natural look of cherry (remember, it’s wood, not plastic).

Then take the same 320 grit abrasive on a hand block (the Festool hard blocks are very nice) and gently go over the poplar to get the fuzz and grit off the shellac. If you are going to use a wood stain you will need to pre-treat the wood with something to limit the penetration of the stain. Originally Posted by jackrabbit5.if they don’t like the blotchy look, they should go with something other than poplar.

When staining…I don’t use a brush….rag only…rub it in. But don’t try to go back and make it darker before it dries….chances are you will make it lighter. Finishing characteristics: Because of its light color, white oak is a good choice for pastel or pickled finishes. Various species of wood color differently for a given stain and, obviously, a given species of wood colors differently for various stains. TIPS: test your wood in an inconspicuous area to see the color which will develop.

Remove it by carefully sanding with 220 or 320 grit paper until there is filler only in the pores and not on the wood between them. I am currently in the process of staining and finishing 18 doors and 1000 lineal feet of poplar for new construction. Oil and oil varnish finishes get soaked up like a sponge by spalted wood and, in my opinion, muddy the beautiful natural look. That will act as a nice conditioner for you to apply an oil based stain over it and you will not get blotchy.