Minwax Pre-Stain Conditioner - What is it?

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Forum topic by Dchip posted 10-09-2012 01:05 PM 1411 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Dchip's profile


270 posts in 2670 days

10-09-2012 01:05 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I always assumed it was the same as dewaxed shellac seal-coat, but it appears to be an oil-based product. Thinned poly?

-- Dan Chiappetta, NYC,

6 replies so far

View Charles Maxwell's profile

Charles Maxwell

1080 posts in 3225 days

#1 posted 10-09-2012 01:31 PM

Use the minwax pre-stain product to condition soft woods like pine before you apply oil based stains. And, apply your stain soon after the conditioner is on. This prevents blotchy staining. use with oil based stains only! I have some experience here.

-- Max the "night janitor" at

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4403 posts in 3378 days

#2 posted 10-09-2012 01:46 PM

It is USELESS. Takes forever to dry and does nothing that a quick coat of dewaxed shellac won’t do. Tried it once. I put it right up there with all the other “miracle, one step, easy, anybody-can-do-it, 20 min.” finishes advertised for folks to use and get COMPLETELY frustrated with finishing.
Anybody want to know how I really feel?


View Cosmicsniper's profile


2202 posts in 2576 days

#3 posted 10-09-2012 01:52 PM

I agree with Bill. I think the stuff is junk. Dewaxed shellac sealcoat works well for that application.

-- jay,

View lumberjoe's profile


2893 posts in 1666 days

#4 posted 10-09-2012 03:02 PM

The best stuff I have used is Charles Neil’s pre-color conditioner – blotch control.


View Dchip's profile


270 posts in 2670 days

#5 posted 10-09-2012 04:15 PM

Thanks everyone. I do use seal-coat and it works well. I also try to avoid staining at all costs. I know what this stuff is meant for (and that it doesn’t work well), but no one has actually answered ”What is this stuff?” Chemically, what is it (Besides 89% mineral spirits)?

-- Dan Chiappetta, NYC,

View Nighttripper's profile


41 posts in 1585 days

#6 posted 10-12-2012 01:02 AM

Yes its Mineral Spirits and Poly, although I’ve seen DIY recipes at closer to 50/50

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