Put my piece together, did my final sanding, raised the grain, wiped down with mineral spirits to check for any surface defects - none.
Stained with a Bartley Gel pigment stain. Lol behold, damn glue marks reared their ugly head. The piece now has its first coat of stain and a few minor glue marks. I'd like to remove the glue marks via wet sanding with the same stain, and I'm aware that this'll remove the original stain. My thought is this will be okay as I will re-stain the piece.
This process should remove the glue marks and leave the piece evenly stained....right? I'm following this process based upon a finishing book I have by Jeff Jewitt. Although he does say to wet sand it while the stain is still wet. Unfortunately this is not a possibility now.
Are there any tricks or tips I should be aware of in correcting this?
I think we're stumped. I know I am. One comment though: you mentioned Jeff Jewitt's book. He is amazingly accessible and willing to help. You might want to try the wetsanding thing you described, and it it works, great. But if not, go to Jeff's website, http://www.homesteadfinishing.com
and drop him an email on the problem, what you've done, and does he have any suggestions. I have emailed him and gotten detailed answers on questions similar to yours.
Thanks for your suggestion. I took your advice and posted my problem to Jeff Jewitt and received a response. I thought I'd share with the "gang" here my original problem description and his response.
As an amateur woodworker, I frequent the discussion forum at www.woodworking.com and the folks there suggested I take a finishing problem I have over here. Thank you in advance for taking a few moments to provide some assistance to this first-time finisher.
I have some bookshelves that I have made out of what I thought was clear pine. I say "thought", because that's what I requested at my lumber store (Smoots Lumber in Alexandria, Virginia), and that's what they gave me. Recently, I took a test board to my local Woodcraft store to try and match some stains and all the employee's there couldn't identify the wood except to say that it isn't pine. From a wood book, the closest picture that matches the grain and black flecks in the wood is Yellow Siris. But, I digress as this isn't my problem...
I have a few finishing books including your book, "Great Wood Finishes". After assembly, I followed these steps:
1) Sanding with my ROS using AO 220 grit
2) Wiping down with water to look for any defects and glue marks
3) Sanding some more with my ROS and by hand using AO 220
4) Sanding by hand with garnet 220
5) Raising the grain with water and waiting 24 hours
6) Sanding by hand with garnet 220
After my final sanding and prior to my application of the stain I pretreated the wood with a mixture of 10% linseed oil and 90% mineral spirits.
After playing around with a few shades of stain on some test boards, I finally found the color I wanted and stained the shelves with Bartley Gel Stain. After applying the first coat of stain I discovered that there are several glue marks in corners that the stain is not penetrating into. Either I wasn't thorough enough in my water wipe down and missed these spots or the water didn't bring out the problem areas. Whatever the case I followed the advice in your book of wet sanding with the gel stain while the stain was still wet to remove the defects. While I was able to remove some of the problem areas, others are much harder to tackle as they are in corners. I wasn't able to get to all of them prior to the stain drying.
While the piece doesn't look too bad I'd still like to give a shot at correcting the glue marks. I'm hesitant to sand down the glue marks now after the stain has dried as I think it'll leave an uneven appearance. I have gone back and tried wet sanding with the stain one of the areas and it still left a somewhat uneven appearance.
My intention is to finish the piece with General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Oil and Urethane Satin topcoat. What's the best way to correct the problem area? Remove the stain entirely and re-stain? If so what's the best way to remove the stain? Can I get some kind of touch up pen and color the glue marks the same color as the stain then apply my finish?
Any suggestions and help you can provide would be greatly appreciated.
Jeff Jewitt's response:
At this point, I think you'd make things worse by trying to sand off or remove the stain.
This problem happens to the best of us, and most finishers keep an arsenal of dry pigment powders that they mix together with shellac to "touch up" things like glue marks. In essence you paint over the problem or darken it so that it matches the surrounding color. We have amassed two "kits" which can be found on our catalog under the Touch Up and Misc section.
Touch up pens are another option - which you can find at most hardware and paint store. After the stuff dries, top-coat it.
My advice is to just get the color close, but don't try and overdo it. It will look better when it's topcoated, particularly if you use a satin or matte finish.
Well the correct technique is to not use so much glue that you have to wipe any away.
But, if your like me and sometimes fall into the "Tim-the-toolman-Taylor" mode of more is better...
I wiped the excess and then sanded the area to remove the glue that had been absorbed into the surface. This is easy to identify and perform if your on an flat area but when you get to corners or angles it becomes harder to sand the area without leaving sanding marks. I'm now considering on getting a B&D Mouse or similar sanding tool for future projects.
Let the piece dry for an hour and then scrape the glue drips away (scraper, razor blade, etc) before the get super hard. Another method is to wipe the glue up with a wet scotch brite pad, rolling the pad along the glue line so that a fresh piece of pad is always presented. What you're trying to do is avoid smearing. And always use clean water. The final way, and I tend to use this on panel glue up's, is to leave the panel about 1/16" or 1/8" too thick, glue it up, who cares about the glue, and then run it through the planer or drum sander (Performax 16x32). No glue problems at all then.