Conditioner or putty first?

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Forum topic by TomTinkerSum posted 05-01-2012 06:42 AM 1009 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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226 posts in 4008 days

05-01-2012 06:42 AM

Topic tags/keywords: conditioner putty finishing oak walnut plywood trick tip resource


I have not had to deal with conditioner yet. However, I’m requesting assistance: Which should I use first, conditioner or putty? This is for a walnut frame that’ll sit on a display I’m composing for a senior ranking official in my command.

Second, I sanded down some anomalies in oak plywood, now it has more streaking. I did not go through veneer yet. I am wondering if Minwax pres-tain conditioner will help eliminate the streaking and make the oak plywood blend more with oak hardwood. The oak plywood on an accompanied box will be with the overall display.

I don’t have time to do any rework on this project.

Thanks for any input.


-- Sawdust and shavings are therapeutic.... :)

4 replies so far

View MNgary's profile


303 posts in 2590 days

#1 posted 05-01-2012 12:20 PM

I recommend completing all surface preperation (sanding, filling, etcetera) before using the conditioner, TomTinkerSum. I think of it as the first coat of stain (albeit one with no color or tint) and, therefore, don’t apply until I’m ready to begin staining.

-- I dream of a world where a duck can cross the road and no one asks why.

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

5101 posts in 4133 days

#2 posted 05-01-2012 12:55 PM

Get rid of that MW conditioner. Use Zinsser Seal Coat shellac. Quicker, better, more predictable.
I keep a can of MW crap around to remind me NEVER to use it again (kinda like a pic of my ex).


View dhazelton's profile


2789 posts in 2469 days

#3 posted 05-01-2012 01:11 PM

I have always done a first finish coat and then tinted the putty to match. Putty doesn’t always darken as much as the wood does, so sometimes the putty stands out like a sore thumb.

View Sawkerf's profile


1730 posts in 3241 days

#4 posted 05-01-2012 01:16 PM

As with almost all finish questions, the best plan is to try your ideas on scrap and see what you get.

Yes, you want to be very careful sanding veneered plywood. The veneers are usually so thin that it’s easy to change the way they take a stain – even if you haven’t sanded through.

-- Adversity doesn't build reveals it.

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