Soaking Small Parts

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Forum topic by NewSawGuy posted 07-26-2014 12:12 AM 1254 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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3 posts in 1397 days

07-26-2014 12:12 AM

I recently came across this picture online. It appears that the craftsman is soaking small parts in some sort of dye or finish instead of applying it manually?

Does anyone have any knowledge of the this method? What type of stain/dye would be used?

Thanks, by the way this is a great forum, I’m glad I found it :)

8 replies so far

View bold1's profile


293 posts in 1843 days

#1 posted 07-26-2014 01:42 PM

Never seen dye used, but hot oil soaking used to be used on wood that would be used outside. Wood would be weighted down and the oil brought up to around boiling. Last place around here that I know of that treated Railroad ties by heating creosote ripped their tank out 40 yrs. ago and went to pressure vessel. There are tables on different woods, their thickness, and how long it takes for different levels of penetration.

View Redoak49's profile


3242 posts in 1985 days

#2 posted 07-26-2014 10:23 PM

When I make small parts or puzzles with the scroll saw, I usually will use Danish Oil. I will put the parts in a zip lock bag and add some Danish Oil and let them soak in it awhile. I take them out, wipe them down and then hang them to dry. It is a good way to finish a lot of small parts.

View TheWoodenOyster's profile


1315 posts in 1931 days

#3 posted 07-27-2014 01:14 AM

Heard of folks doing it for small stuff. I have always wanted to try it as it seems it would be quick and clean. Too bad I make furniture and would need a kiddie pool of poly to make it happen. Don’t think the neighbors would like that.

-- The Wood Is Your Oyster

View Loren's profile (online now)


10381 posts in 3644 days

#4 posted 07-27-2014 03:20 AM

Could be acetone used to get oils out of the wood so
it can be finished more effectively.

I use aniline dyes. Leather dyes work if you have some
on hand.

I dip small parts in jars of dye sometimes, but usually just
to test a color idea out. One can make a strong
dark brown stain by dissolving roof patching cement
in mineral spirits. The pitch is a very strong pigment
and very cheap so it’s easy to make as much as you
want and have it be dark.

View Vicki's profile


1099 posts in 3340 days

#5 posted 07-27-2014 05:50 PM

I soak my puzzimal scrollsawn pieces in Orange Glo, then let them dry on a piece of screen tacked to a frame to keep it off the bench.

-- Vicki on the Eastern Shore of MD

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Arlin Eastman

4215 posts in 2557 days

#6 posted 07-27-2014 06:21 PM


That method helps color get into the wood better and the endgrain soaks it up really fast too.
I have done it with plastic zip lock bags and have used Dyes, Stains, and Inks to see how they would work.

-- It is always the right time, to do the right thing.

View runswithscissors's profile


2751 posts in 2021 days

#7 posted 07-28-2014 06:22 PM

Many years ago I made up some apple wood sheet blocks for my sailboat (with bronze sheaves and roller bearings). I boiled the blocks in a mix of turpentine and linseed oil until the wood started to blacken. The heat distorted the wood, affecting the carved slots for the sheaves, so I had to re carve them. They showed zero effects from year-round exposure to the elements after 12 years or so. They were stropped with rope grommets made from WWII navy surplus tarred hemp, 3/8” diameterr. I had to replace the grommets after about 8 years or so.

Of course this is a very dangerous procedure. Imagine the volatile fumes from the boiling oil and turps. Anyone trying this should wear thick leather gloves and keep a fire extinguisher handy,

-- I admit to being an adrenaline junky; fortunately, I'm very easily frightened

View Jake's profile


850 posts in 1627 days

#8 posted 07-29-2014 06:55 AM

I have used the soaking process a few times. Last time I did it was for a stool top that was supposed to go into the shower in my sauna. If a piece is going to be out in the weather or a very humid environment, nothing beats a good 24 hour bath in BLO or similar.

-- Measure twice, cut once, cut again for good measure.

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