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  1. #1
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    Aug 2004
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    St. john\'s, nl, canada.
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    Tips for staining/finishing oak


    Hi all,

    I figured before I ruin $200 worth of oak I should ask if anyone out there has any good tips on oak finishing.

    I assume conditioner isn't necessary, are there certain stains that work better on oak than others? What's a good way to fill in the deep grain other than 300 coats of poly? Etc...

    Thanks in advance,
    Mike

  2. #2
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    Sep 2004
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    Northern Colorado
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    2,997

    RE: Tips for staining/finishing oak

    I think Oak is one of the easiest, most forgiving woods to finish. If you want to make a glassy smooth finish [url:www.rockler.com/ecom7/product_details.cfm?&offerings_id=2003&SearchHandl e=DADBDADHDADADDDGDDGEGGGBGGGBGCDJCNGEDDDGDICNDEDG GCGBCNGBDJDFDDCNDIDBGCDFDEDEDEDBGCDBDADCDADADADBDA DADADADJHHGPGOGEGFHCGGGJGMDADADADEDADADADADADADADB DFDADADADBDADADADADADADADADADADADADBDADADADADJHHGP GOGEGFHCGGGJGMDADADADBDB|this stuff] has worked very well for that. Wonderfil comes in a thick filler paste consistency, I thin some with water to make a thin gravy and brush it all over the workpiece, then work it into the pores cross-grain with a plasic putty knife. After it dries a few hours, sand it with 320 grit aluminum oxide sand paper, repeat one more time. You can get good uniform color results with Minwax or Zar oil stains (I like to Zar's slower penetration) and lots of others too. Just rubbing in Boiled Linseed Oil looks good too. Then three coats of oil based polywhatever.

    If you choose the glassy finish route be forwarned that the result may look a lot like glossy woodgrain melamine or contact paper. Allowing some grain texture on the surface improves the appearnce IMO.
    Measure once... cut twice.

  3. #3
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    Jun 2004
    Location
    Black Earth, WI, USA.
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    792

    RE: Tips for staining/finishing oak

    Also be sure to test your finish on a couple scrap pieces first. It's always best to 'ruin' a scrap pieve than to find out that it didn't work out the way you planned on that $200 worth of wood project. And make sure to finish the test piece all the way through to ensure that you end up with the result you want.

    Good luck and post pics of your finished project. :)

  4. #4
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    RE: Tips for staining/finishing oak

    Test on scrap, but I agree that oak is really easy to finish. I've had really spectacular results with good old minwax stain products on oak.

    Even though conditioner shouldn't technically be necessary, I find that it makes the stain that much easier to apply evenly. It slows down absorption and drying. I like to apply one coat of minwax wood conditioner with a rag, let it sit about 10 minutes, then start applying minwax oil stain with another rag.

    Just personal preference, but I think Minwax Mahogany on red oak makes a really beautiful finish, under a few coats of wipe-on poly.

  5. #5
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    Sep 2004
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    Trussville, Al, USA! USA!.
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    RE: Tips for staining/finishing oak

    Mike,

    Go grab the latest issue of "Wood" magazine, it's all about finishing oak this month.

    Ron

  6. #6
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    Sep 2004
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    Trussville, Al, USA! USA!.
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    RE: Tips for staining/finishing oak

    Sorry... make that "American Woodworker" magazine - the September issue.

    Ron

  7. #7
    Member
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    Aug 2004
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    St. john\'s, nl, canada.
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    46

    RE: Tips for staining/finishing oak


    Excellent!!! Thanks all!



    >Sorry... make that "American Woodworker" magazine - the
    >September issue.
    >
    >Ron


  8. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Allen, Texas, USA.
    Posts
    29

    RE: Tips for staining/finishing oak

    I agree with the Minwax Mahogany idea. I am building some white oak table now and I have just finished it with Minwas red mahogany and some wipe-on satin poly. I love the wipe-on poly. It eliminates the runs and brush marks. Takes a few more coats, but each coat dries faster, so you really don't lose any time.

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