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Staining Comercial Wood Putty?

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Blog entry by Roz posted 1190 days ago 8791 reads 0 times favorited 19 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Can anyone tell me how to get a good staining on a commercially available wood putty like Elmers?

Several years ago I stopped using and substituted a glue and sawdust mixture on any projects where the repair would show and appearance mattered. Appearance almost always matters on my project, if only to me.

I recently found myself using the commercially made putty while refinishing a floor and as normal, it stood out and would not accept enough color to allow for a match. I am not happy with the results. I hope a carpet will cover it. Thanks Roz.

-- Terry Roswell, L.A. (Lower Alabama) "Life is what happens to you when you are making other plans."



19 comments so far

View Sawkerf's profile

Sawkerf

1730 posts in 1694 days


#1 posted 1190 days ago

If you’re going to use a filler before you stain/finish, it’s best to use one that will most closely match the final result. IOW, don’t worry about how it matches the raw wood, plan foe the final look.

I also often use wax color sticks after applying the stain but before applying the finish. You can usually get a good color match – even if you have to mix a couple of them.

-- Adversity doesn't build character...................it reveals it.

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2697 posts in 1911 days


#2 posted 1190 days ago

I have used Famowood and Fix Wood patch extensivly for years, and had pretty good luck with both brands.
I only switched between the two beacause of my suppliers. They both come in several colors and tend to take a stain OK. Of course, the less you use the better off you are.

I too have used the wax like Sawkerf mentioned. Be very careful as it is not compatable with some finishes.
I tried it under lacquer once—-A big no-no . Wax under lacquer will not work. A lot of other finishes are probably alright—-just test it first.

-- She thought I hung the moon--now she just thinks I did it wrong

View Bob Kollman's profile

Bob Kollman

1796 posts in 1816 days


#3 posted 1190 days ago

The only solution I can think of is to try a General Finish Gel Stain….
This application is suppose to sit on top of the wood as opposed to
soaking into the wood. Don’t know if it would work though.

-- Bob Kenosha Wi.

View Tim Dahn's profile

Tim Dahn

1467 posts in 2190 days


#4 posted 1190 days ago

I can’t help with staining but the best thing I have found to is mix sanding dust with whatever I plan to finish the project with. It matches perfectly and will age the same too. mixing dust with shellac works great too.

-- Good judgement comes from experience and experience comes from poor judgement.

View peteg's profile

peteg

2856 posts in 1448 days


#5 posted 1190 days ago

Roz, not sure if you are using a resin type filler on a linseed oil based putty filler as the brand mane dont mean a thing to us in NZ, if it is a putty filler I have used straight dye stains (or a gel stain) mixed with the putty first (remember to wear some plastic gloves or you willet in a hell of a mess,
you might just have to play a bit
I appreciate your problem, it is not always possible to fix from the reverse side or glue,
I am going to watch this one with interest, good post Roz

-- Pete G: If you always do what you always did you'll always get what you always got

View Roz's profile

Roz

1659 posts in 2412 days


#6 posted 1190 days ago

Hey Peteg, I never considered mixing a gel stain into the putty. I could see getting the correct color shading still being a problem there. I have some that is a two part resin filler and some premixed with wood fiber in it but am not sure of it’s make up. Both have been sold in the States for many years and I try not to use them on furniture and other important project because of the staining problem.

Timbo, I never heard or mixing the sanding dust with the finish. I have been doing it with glue and getting a good result. I may have to try that.

I would really like to be able to effectively stain the commercial stuff when time is a factor for a finished job, as with this floor I have just done.

-- Terry Roswell, L.A. (Lower Alabama) "Life is what happens to you when you are making other plans."

View William's profile

William

8972 posts in 1467 days


#7 posted 1190 days ago

I use Minwax stainable wood filler. It has worked well enough for most of my fixes. If I want something to be almost completely unoticeable though, I have found it best to use color matching fillers that I buy at a local Sherwin William’s store. They are kind of expensive. I buy them in very small batches so I don’t wind up with a bunch of unused.

-- http://wddsrfinewoodworks.blogspot.com/

View lightweightladylefty's profile

lightweightladylefty

2632 posts in 2338 days


#8 posted 1190 days ago

Roz,

I’ve had some success with using a marking pen (similar to Magic Markers or Sharpies) on the wood filler in a close color to my stain before staining. Once the piece is stained, it seems to blend in pretty well. But . . . you need to try it on a sample piece with the stain over it to make sure you get a good match. If you have an art store that carries markers in PMS colors, there is quite a selection from which to choose. I’ve also found that some brands of stain cover considerably better than others, depending on the color and the wood on which it is being used. (I can’t think of the brands off hand and I won’t be near my shop for a week or more to check. My memory isn’t the greatest and it’s not getting any better.) ;-(

L/W

-- Jesus is the ONLY reason for ANY season.

View jockmike2's profile

jockmike2

10635 posts in 2872 days


#9 posted 1190 days ago

Try timbermate, an Australian wood filler.It works great and is forgiveing as heck. It can’t freeze or dry out, It is forgiving as heck. Add water to it and you can reconstitute it and it is great stuff, mike

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View stefang's profile

stefang

12872 posts in 1959 days


#10 posted 1190 days ago

I am never satisfied when I try to match a filler to the wood, but when the wood has naturally occurring darker streaks or color defects, like dark brown, dark red or black, I find it easy to fill with that color. sometimes I have to reshape the defect a bit first to give it a natural look. This technique is not possible if your wood is even colored, but it is a really good solution if otherwise.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Roz's profile

Roz

1659 posts in 2412 days


#11 posted 1189 days ago

Good tips all! I never considered the marking pens that LWL suggested or reshaping the defect as Stefang suggest but these are good tools to have in my box. The Timber mate sounds like a good solution but I don’t think I can get it here. The same is true for the Sherwin Williams putty that William suggest. It would mean a fifty minute drive but I may have to try it. I did not know about that product. I will have to look for the Minwax stainable filler too. Thanks to you all for your suggestions. Anything will be an improvement over what I am using now.

-- Terry Roswell, L.A. (Lower Alabama) "Life is what happens to you when you are making other plans."

View jockmike2's profile

jockmike2

10635 posts in 2872 days


#12 posted 1184 days ago

Either Rockler or Woodcraft carry Timbermate, you could order it on line and have it delivered. They have numerous colors, walnut, maple, mahogany and many more, you can also mix, match or stain the white color they carry. This really is amazing stuff, you can even reconstitute the dust after sanding it. Just add water. They say it smells like clay, I think it smells like cow dung. But it works.

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View Roz's profile

Roz

1659 posts in 2412 days


#13 posted 1182 days ago

Thanks Mike, I’ll look into it.l

-- Terry Roswell, L.A. (Lower Alabama) "Life is what happens to you when you are making other plans."

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

11284 posts in 1731 days


#14 posted 1133 days ago

Hey Roz, recently I tried something that worked pretty good for a stained project. I typically use Bix stainable wood filler. It is a powder that you mix with water. But, on this walnut project that I am going to stain with walnut stain, I tried mixing the powder with the stain for the job and it worked pretty good. The only drawback is that you have to let it set a day for the stain to completely dry before sanding. You don’t want to gum up the sandpaper with wet putty. For some imperfections that I don’t catch before finishing, I use the colored filler pencils and they blend in pretty good.

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View Roz's profile

Roz

1659 posts in 2412 days


#15 posted 1133 days ago

Thank you Jim, I will remember this and look for the Bix wood filler.

-- Terry Roswell, L.A. (Lower Alabama) "Life is what happens to you when you are making other plans."

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