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shellac and waterbase stain

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Whizzo

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Hi.
Im using vandyke crystals to stain some pine work tops prior to waxing. I find that this water base stain lifts the grain and even if I rub it down with 320 after it dry's the finish is not a smooth as I would like.
I am thinking of using shellac sanding sealer prior to staining. Can anyone tell me if this will make a better finish and will the stain still soak in enough, or should it be applied after staining?
Thanks.
 

Froggy

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Hi Whizzo and welcome to thee forum. I've been looking into related areas of this lately and am pretty sure you use the sanding sealer before the stain, which fills the pores of the wood (particularly important when using soft wood) and helps get an even colour from the stain. Whether it cures the problem of the raised grain or not I'm not sure. Perhaps some of the more experienced finishers can comment?

Good luck Froggy.
 

bosshogg

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Instead of using abrasive to take off the raised grain try this - on the bare wood damp surface to raise grain and then remove with a well sharpened cabinet scraper, repeat until raised grain no longer occurs then apply your staining agent, again use a cabinet scraper to smooth surface. This process eliminates the fuzz that comes with raised grain from some woods, Pine is particularly susceptible, applying sealer after staining helps lock the fibres down. Experiment until you get a system that suits you...bosshogg :)
Imagination is more important than knowledge...
Albert Einstein (hammer)
 

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I'm not a great fan of sealing then staining as when sealing unless giving a minimum of 2 coats theres a tendancy to miss the odd bit of wood when brushing the sealer on. What happens then when staining is the stain absorbs more in some places more than others and gives a patchy effect. Vandyke water stain is very good due to its sticky properties for what is known as floating the stain on eg seal the surface well with 3 or 4 coats of french polish let harden then wash the vandyke stain over the polished suface and wipe out with kitchen towel leaving a thin residue of colour. Then when vandyke is dry, wipe over with french polish rubber and seal it it in - not the most durable of finishes as the stain sits on the finish not in the wood so not a great finish really, but looks good.

In the Ops case, I'd get a sample piece of pine, wet let dry and sand with 240grit - do this say 3 times. Then stain with vandyke, let dry overnight to be safe, then brush shellac seanding sealer on with mop and when hard, flatten with finishing paper ie 500 or 600 grit and see how smooth it is....
 
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