Help With Ebonizing Birch

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Forum topic by Jonicus posted 552 days ago 946 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1 post in 554 days

552 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: help ebonized birch birch refinishing finishing restoration project

Hi Everyone. This is my first time here. I have a restoration project ahead of me and it is a 1950’s Milo Baughmen dining table. I will be restoring it to its former beauty as a gift for my mother. The top is made of rose wood, oak and birch. The sides and legs are of ebonized birch and that’s where I am in trouble. I don’t know what will be the best way to do this. I am just starting the project and I have a little time before I will get to that part. I am grateful for any and all help/ advice with this project. I plan to update as I go along as well. The first two pictures are a before the restoration and the end goal. Thanks again.

6 replies so far

View Dan Lyke's profile

Dan Lyke

1469 posts in 2726 days

#1 posted 550 days ago

I’d be tempted to go with a commercial stain. Birch is kind of soft and doesn’t have the tannins necessary for the usual ebonizing processes, but I know I’ve used a couple of dark commercial stains that’d penetrate fairly well…

-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California,

View higtron's profile


192 posts in 1278 days

#2 posted 550 days ago

India ink paint it on until the wood won’t absorb anymore you can buy it at a art supply store.

-- If I cut it too short I can scab a piece on, but if it's too long what do I do?

View killerb's profile


150 posts in 999 days

#3 posted 550 days ago

general finishes makes a good black water base dye. bob

-- Bob

View ROB_IN_MN's profile


20 posts in 747 days

#4 posted 549 days ago

I agree with higtron. I’ve used india and it gets totally black. I used it on oak and it still showed the grain nicely, if that’s what you’re after.

View Clint Searl's profile

Clint Searl

1389 posts in 962 days

#5 posted 549 days ago

Get a can of black Ronan Japan Color paste. Nothing will be blacker or more permanent. Thin with naptha and wipe it on. Top with any clear coat.

-- Clint Searl.............We deserve what we tolerate

View Jorge G.'s profile

Jorge G.

1524 posts in 1076 days

#6 posted 549 days ago

You can use cathecol and iron disolved in vinegar. It is what I use and it works great with any kind of wood, even pine.

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

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