Will water based poly blotch on cherry?

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Forum topic by Sirgreggins posted 02-04-2013 09:55 PM 2372 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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299 posts in 2477 days

02-04-2013 09:55 PM

Hye guys, I was curious if waterbased poly would blotch on cherry or if blotching is attributed with oils only. I’m making a cherry shelf and have 2 finishes in mind:
1.) GF EnduroVar (water based)
2.)GF Arm R Seal (oil based) if i use this i’ll get Charles Neil’s Pre Conditioner.

9 replies so far

View pintodeluxe's profile


5820 posts in 3055 days

#1 posted 02-04-2013 09:59 PM

Clear finishes will not usually blotch cherry. If it is a product like polyshades with stain mixed in, I would test it first.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View Howie's profile


2656 posts in 3165 days

#2 posted 02-04-2013 10:09 PM

”If it is a product like polyshades with stain mixed in, I would test it first.

I would avoid polyshades period. Just MHO

-- Life is good.

View GeneR's profile


151 posts in 2180 days

#3 posted 02-05-2013 12:24 AM

If the clear coat has any tint it possibly could blotch. Blotching is usually only prevalent in softer woods. Definitely use a test piece of the same material to try the finishing technique you are planning on using. If it does blotch you can use a prestain which is essentially a clear coat greatly watered down with the appropriate thinner. You can also use shellac to seal it prior to your clear coat but this will tend to yellow a little giving a warmer feel. Shellac can be used under any finish and can be used over any fully cured finish as well.

-- Failure is always an option. :-)

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Don W

19055 posts in 2809 days

#4 posted 02-05-2013 12:40 AM

I try to always use clear finishes on cherry and never had a problem. I’ve never seen much of a difference between water based and oil.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View Purrmaster's profile


915 posts in 2335 days

#5 posted 02-05-2013 04:58 AM

Cherry can be quite prone to blotching no matter what finish is used. I’d test it on scrap first. Put as many coats on the scrap as you intend to put onto the finished project.

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Scott C.

160 posts in 2293 days

#6 posted 02-05-2013 05:00 AM

I’ve finished multiple cherry projects with arm-r-seal and never had a problem, always turned out great. But when in doubt, test on a scrap piece.

-- measure twice, cut once, swear and start over.

View Sirgreggins's profile


299 posts in 2477 days

#7 posted 02-05-2013 01:53 PM

thanks everyone. I guess a test piece is my only option. i knew i was going to anyways but i wasnt sure if water based finishes were better for blotch control. then again it’s wood, you never know what’s going to happen until you have it in front of you. side note: pros and cons to using Enduro var or Arm R Seal? Just curious

View RussellAP's profile


3104 posts in 2528 days

#8 posted 02-05-2013 02:16 PM

I think it’s a good idea to pre condition cherry with either Charles Neil or shellac to seal the grain, especially before a finish like poly. For one thing, it helps to keep the finish on top and not get sucked up repeatedly by untreated wood. This produces a more even finish.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

View Fuzzy's profile


298 posts in 4230 days

#9 posted 02-07-2013 12:23 AM

+1 for Charles Neil’s BLOTCH CONTROL … use it exactly as per instructions … it will turn out exactly as he claims.

-- - dabbling in sarcasm is foolish … if you’re not proficient at it, you end up looking stupid … ... ...

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