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Dark Finish on Wire Brushed Oak

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Forum topic by tdmoreno posted 06-27-2017 01:11 AM 305 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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tdmoreno

3 posts in 171 days


06-27-2017 01:11 AM

I am trying to match the finish of engineered hardwood floors on our solid oak stair treads. I am having issues and have tried many different methods but need some help. The floor looks similar to the one below.

It is a dark walnut color and is wire brushed. I have tried the following:
1. I tried sanding to 150, then wire brush, begin with an oil based stain, then use a matte poly. This resulted in very dark grain and the rest of the work taking little stain. I tried leaving the stain on for longer and reapplying but the stain seems only to penetrated the grain. This looked like tiger stripes to me with way to much contrast.
2. I tried sanding to 150, wire brush, water based dye stain- this looks very even in color but it is hard to distinguish the grain from the remaining wood- it almost looks painted on top of
3. I tried sanding to 150, no wire brush, oil based stain, then once dry use a water based dye on top. This evens out the remaining wood and gets me close to the finish I am trying to achieve but still looks a little off without eire brushing.
4. I tried sanding to 150, wire brush, oil stain, water based dye- this resulted in overly darkened grain- it seems like once I wire brush then the grain get really dark.

So should I try to use some pre stain conditioner, thinned out shellac? I have spent way too much time and I’m dying for some help. Thanks in advance! -Tom


4 replies so far

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Loren

9627 posts in 3485 days


#1 posted 06-27-2017 01:25 AM

I’ve had success adding oil-soluble powder dyes
to dark walnut stains. Clients always (it seems)
want a darker color than is available off
the shelf.

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Rich

1980 posts in 426 days


#2 posted 06-27-2017 02:01 AM

Just shooting from the hip here, but have you considered a grain filler such as Pore-O-Pac colored with a dark Japan color like burnt umber or van dyke brown?

-- No matter how much you push the envelope, it'll still be stationery.

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WoodES

85 posts in 1528 days


#3 posted 06-27-2017 03:48 AM

I went through a similar exercise when I made the transition molding for the wood floors I installed a couple of years ago, so I offer my thoughts.

Plan to make a large number of samples to test the color variations and keep detailed notes on the proportions and application methods for each sample. The notes will help you zero in on a solution.

I bet I made a dozen samples, with variations using 4 or more stains. Make sure the stain base is the same, don’t mix oil & water.

I also used a well cut coat of shellac between stains. This prevents the prior coats from bleeding or being lifted by the latter stain coats.

I ultimately used & really liked the Rust-Oleum Interior Stain that I found at the local blue box store. Big difference from the stains of old. I found a combination of two colors did the trick. Look for the “colors” in your engineered floor and try separate stains to achieve a similar look.

Reason for making my own transition molding was the $1200+ price tag for 120 +/- lf. I made my own for under $200, got to play in my shop for a week and learn a few finishing tricks.

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tdmoreno

3 posts in 171 days


#4 posted 06-27-2017 04:34 AM

Wood ES


Plan to make a large number of samples to test the color variations and keep detailed notes on the proportions and application methods for each sample. The notes will help you zero in on a solution.

I have made probably 15-20 samples using combinations of base coats of different oils and also have used different dyes in different combinations but the wire brushing is really giving me problems.

Rich


Just shooting from the hip here, but have you considered a grain filler such as Pore-O-Pac colored with a dark Japan color like burnt umber or van dyke brown?

Based on reading different posts I just bought some wood conditioner to try to seal the wood to get a bit more even stain. I was also thinking of trying to put on a wash coat? of cut shellac between the oil based and the dye to try to keep the grain from darkening too much. I am feeling like I have spent so much time and am not getting the return on investment at this point…. My problem is just the grain getting way too dark. I will post pics later but I appreciate everyones time and help.

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