Finishing Question

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Forum topic by jpw1995 posted 09-14-2007 04:00 PM 1090 views 0 times favorited 1 reply Add to Favorites Watch
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376 posts in 4537 days

09-14-2007 04:00 PM

Topic tags/keywords: finishing

I’ve got to put a finish on a wine cabinet I built for my girlfriend, and it needs to match the finish on her dining room table. The table appears black, but when the light hits it just right you can see a lot of red in it. Does anyone have any advice on how to achieve a finish like this?

-- JP, Louisville, KY

1 reply so far

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4035 posts in 4302 days

#1 posted 09-14-2007 05:07 PM

You will want to stain the new piece to match, then clearcoat it. Depending where you are and what stores are available, you could use Microtone dyes from M.C. Campbell, Miniwax stains, Trans-Tints (Homestead finishing – aka Jeff Jewitt), Wizard Tints (Woodworkers supply), Zar stains, Varathane oil based stains, Bartley Gel stains, etc. Then you will have to prepare test boards from the wood used to build the cabinet (hopefully you still have some offcuts), mocking up the color and the final clearcoat on each sample board. Keep records of what you used and write then on the back of the finished sample.

Likely there won’t be a single color that will match, and you will have to combine two colors. The reason I mentioned Microtone dyes, a sprayable stain is because that’s what I have big jugs of on hand, and their black and Cordoban stains would yield a black with a red undertone (out of the jug, their black has a bluish hue).

Other manufacturers may have a black that would respond well to a Pennsylvania Cherry addition or some burnt sienna. You’ll just have to see what’s there in your neighborhood that imparts the reddish highlight to the available ebonizing stain (some guys use India Ink to ebonize, but you will have grain-raising with this). You might mix stains to see if they match or you can stain and glaze.

It might be helpful to get some books or web-resources on finishing. Big names to Google: Jeff Jewitt, Bob Flexner, Michael Dresdner, Teri Masachi, Andy Charron.

All in all, consider it a science project. Maybe you could blog your progress and provide some pictures as you go along. Keep us posted and you’ll have comments coming out of the woodwork (bad pun). Have fun.

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over a decade.

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