How do you Lighten a stain that got to dark

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Forum topic by Richard posted 12-12-2014 07:05 PM 859 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1916 posts in 2717 days

12-12-2014 07:05 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question finishing mahogany

Wondering what the best way is to Lighten up a project that I got the stain a bit to dark for what I wanted. I have tried to sand it to remove some of the stain and that helps a little but I would like to try and remove more of the stain and not have to do a total remake of the box.
The wood is poplar and the stain was MinWax Mahognay.

4 replies so far

View Gshepherd's profile


1727 posts in 2228 days

#1 posted 12-12-2014 07:27 PM

Have you tried denatued alcohol?

-- What we do in life will Echo through Eternity........

View bondogaposis's profile


4769 posts in 2378 days

#2 posted 12-12-2014 08:59 PM

Depending on the type of stain, you could try to wipe it w/ the appropriate solvent in conjunction w/ sanding.

-- Bondo Gaposis

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1916 posts in 2717 days

#3 posted 12-12-2014 11:22 PM

Thanks guys , I was kind of leaning in this direction but since finishes are not my big thing I thought I had better ask before doing something stupid, Again. :)
I think the MinWax used MS to thin it down but I will check tonight. Might try a test peice if I have enough of the stain left to do it. but I think I am going to try to stay away from the MinWax in the future and go with General Finishes since I have at last found a local store that carries a good selection.

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9728 posts in 3060 days

#4 posted 12-13-2014 04:52 AM

Yes. If it’s Minwax Oil Base the solvent is Mineral Spirits. Also know in the stores as “Paint Thinner”, and “Varsol”.

For some reason Poplar goes very dark as compared to the same stain on Pine. Minwax Sedonna Red on Pine will be a Nice “Ox Blood” Darkish Red, on Poplar it almost goes Black (Just did a Poplar Picture Frame, tested it on a small piece first. YIKES! Good thing I did!)

I’ve had your situation before and I use a rag LIGHTLY impregnated with Mineral Spirits and just keep wiping until it’s lighter. I don’t over do it, because as it dries if will get lighter on it’s own. Wipe again if necessary.

I’ve never used General Finishes Stain before but I hear it’s “Good Stuff”.

Good Luck on your project.


-- LIFE is what happens when you're planning on doing Other Things!

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