Dye running during my poly application.

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Forum topic by Dedvw posted 03-18-2014 12:32 AM 915 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Dedvw's profile


174 posts in 2879 days

03-18-2014 12:32 AM

So I’m new to the whole dying process. I love the color and the way it applies, but have had some “running” during the poly coats stage of my finish process.

Here is what I’m doing:

Maple top and pine body cabinet. I apply the dye (TransTint) with alcohol to the maple one day and pine the next. I waited three days to apply the water based poly coat over the top of the dye and when I applied the poly, I noticed it was picking up the dye and causing blotching. Some area it was even removing most of the dye color from the wood while brushing the poly on. I even tried to wipe down the wood after dye application to remove some loose dye. This wipe down was done after my first poly coat ran. So I’ve applied poly on dyed wood and pre-wiped dyed wood.

What am i doing wrong to set the dye before brushing my poly coats on?

A little background on me, I have a number of years finishing projects under my belt. I’m not a newbie to staining, just dying wood. I’ve used poly over stain on a number of projects without any problems like this

Thanks to everyone for the help.

2 replies so far

View SuperCubber's profile


1026 posts in 2282 days

#1 posted 03-18-2014 01:49 AM

That happens to me every time I use a brush with water based poly on top of dye. According to GF, it’s perfectly normal to get SOME pick-up, but I’ve never had it as bad as you describe. Now I spray most things, and the dye doesn’t move, or pick-up at all. Maybe you can spray a quick coat of dewaxed shellac after the dye? I’m not a shellac expert by any means, but I think you should be fine putting water-based poly on top of it. Someone will be along shortly with another (most likely better) solution, or confirmation of the shellac suggestion.

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC | "To give anything less than your best is to sacrafice the gift." - Steve Prefontaine

View RT31's profile


54 posts in 1655 days

#2 posted 03-18-2014 02:06 AM

I will second the de-waxed shellac before the poly suggestion. Zinsser seal coat is readily available almost everywhere. A couple of coats over the died wood and before the poly.

Any water based finish is going re-activating the dye in the wood unless the wood is sealed first.

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