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Sanding Advice Needed for a newcomer

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darrenkarp

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Hi All,

Afte taking the excellent advice from other members here on how to bleach my new front door (I used the two type ISO Bleach from W. S Jenkins in London) I need to call upon you guys again for sanding advice.

The bleaching process has raised the grain I intend to sand the door down using 240 grit paper but someone told me that if I intend to stain the door (which I do) that the staining process will raise the grain again! Is this correct?

Regards
Darren
 

Chris Knight

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Darren,
It's the water that raises the grain mainly. Yes, certainly sand by all all means before doing anything else - use a 220 or 320 grit (assuming it was sanded before bleaching) and keep it light.

What you do next arguably depends on the type of stain you will be using. A water based stain should certainly be preceded by a water spray (from eg a plant mister; spray water on let dry for several hours or overnight) to raise the grain again - knock it back as before with light sanding.

There are so-called NGR or non-grain raising stains and it is true they raise the grain less - usually oil or spirit based. However, I always raise the grain and sand back before staining as I have found that any stain raises the grain somewhat. Lastly you can always lightly sand a stained surface without destroying the stain/colour if you keep it light.
 

darrenkarp

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Thanks for the speedy response Chris. So am I going to be wasting my time in sanding the door to perfection before staining?

Should I stain first then sand down to a smooth finish. After the staining we intend to use danish oil. Any advice appreciated!
 

Chris Knight

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Darren,

I am not sure what you did before the bleaching, nor how deep the bleaching may have gone, hence the reluctance to be too prescriptive or to encourage too aggressive sanding. However:-

My usual procedure is to sand in stages eliminating scratches from each previous sanding (100 if needed - usually not, 120, 180, 220 or 240, 320). At this point raise the grain and lightly sand again when thoroughly dry with 320. I say lightly because all you need to do is knock off a few stiff fibres that are sticking up - you are not eliminating a bunch of scratches from earlier sanding.

Then use your stain. Lightly sand again to knock off the erect fibres. Then do whatever comes next. In your plan this is oiling and that will be fine. Apply the oil - (please let us know if you are in any doubt here because there is a technique to that as well) - as many coats as you need/want (a goodly number for a front door exposed to the weather).
 

darrenkarp

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Hi,

The bleaching process knocked back the colour to almost white (perfect!). I then washed it down with warm water and have let it dry. I have begun to sand it but then thought of the staining and possible raise in the grain again!

My decorator (a close friend of mine) will be staining it and oiling it but any advice would be warmly received. Basically I have to do the hard work (excluding hanging!) in terms of sanding so didn't want to have to do the job any more times than necessary!

Darren
 

Chris Knight

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Darren,

I think, given where you are at now, just finish the sanding then stain. Flatten the stain if need be, then oil.
 

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