We just finished up putting tongue & groove pine boards in the ceiling
of our porch. The porch area is about 25-feet wide so we trimmed down
14-foot and 12-foot boards so there is a single alternating joint in
each row. Looks good and we needed to stain it so we sampled more
stains then we can shake a stick at and decided on Minwax's Ipswitch
Pine. Just now finished up all the staining (and am barely able to
type from the overhead work) and it looks great with one exception.
Some of the board parts have a high shine to them and other parts are
very dull and flat. Was just differences in parts of the wood as you
can see the patterns in the shiny areas. Biggest problem is the bare
pine was light and when you see the light reflection on the shiny
spots it looks like we missed spots but we didn't.
What we were wondering is if someone could recommend maybe a satin
clear protector or something we can spray or brush over top of the
stain, not only to protect the wood, but also to unify the finish
appearance. Would prefer a satin or dull finish over shine, but would
like something easy to apply like in spray cans. We have some
Thompson's Water Sealer in spray cans but don't want to "test" on the
actual ceiling unless we're sure we're going to do the whole thing.
Thanks in advance for any suggestions!
On Thu, 03 Jul 2008 16:09:41 -0700, infiniteMPG wrote:
When I was at Menards to inquire about finishing pine treads, I was told
there is a product for prepping the wood so the stain would take evenly.
Can't recall the product name but I think it was also by Minwax.
I suspect the difference you are seeing is due to porosity of wood and
presence of sap/oil in the wood. If a penetrating stain is used, it
seems reasonable to expect that the stain would be absorbed differently
depending on structure of wood. A topical stain would probably cover
Give everything a week to dry, then apply any kind of finish product
that you prefer. If you want to double-check the final appearance, I
would stain a scrap of leftover material, let it wait a few days, and
then try youtr finish of choice on the scrap to make sure it is what
On Thu, 3 Jul 2008 16:09:41 -0700 (PDT), infiniteMPG
Don't worry about it. Once a hurricane, tornado, fire, flood, or
terrorist attack gets to it, you won't even notice the difference.
Since the United States is quickly being destroyed by one of the above
disasters, it's only a short matter of time before you won't have to
look at it anymore.
Dont consider spray cans, it will be in your face and lungs, it will
cost a fortune, it probably wont come out even. What you see is the
sap areas. To protect it and keep it from darkening alot use an
exterior water base poly and roll it on.
I think that's the consequence of real wood - it's not uniform.
'Bout the only way for a similar project to come out perfectly is to use
Before you scream "nuts!" I once suggested carpeting the walls of a computer
room. The carpet people did the job, then went outside and ate bugs, but the
noise level went down dramatically.
You could probably get by with the least expensive laminate - it won't have
much traffic. Better glue it, though.
Thanks for the suggestions on prep work but the ceiling is already
done with the T&G and the staining is already done, too. Was looking
for suggestions on a satin wood protector that might unify the finish
appearance over top of the existing stain. Stuff like Thompson's I
don't think changes the appearance, only the water resistance. We
have some test boards already done from when we were shopping for a
color we liked so we're set for that.
Actually, it's a consequence of not knowing what you're doing and not
doing the research beforehand. I do lots of woodwork and have to
worry about the completed product looking too uniform. If it looks
too uniform it starts looking like it's fake. I've learned to leave
in some of the imperfections as indication of natural products and
Sorry, OP, but you should ask the questions and do the research before
you do the work. As FF noted, pine is a funky wood to stain as it
gets blotchy without pre-treatment with a wood conditioner/sealer.
Stain is not a finish treatment, so you should have planned on
topcoating it anyway. Since your major objection is the difference in
sheen, any polyurethane, varnish, really any clear coat at all, will
solve that problem.
I doubt it will suit; while it may have the surface reflectivity, I
suspect it will actually only accentuate the difference between the
underlying finish unless it is sanded uniformly, sealed, then stained
The OP only mentioned the sheen variation, not color. If sheen is his
concern putting a coat of any clear finish on will provide a pretty
much uniform sheen. He's doing a porch ceiling, not furniture. If it
were a piece of furniture, yes, you're right about essentially
It might, but I'd not count on it, at least w/o several coats and
rubbing out. If it's noticeable enough and w/ the wide variation in
surface texture/roughness in standard milled stock, the absorption of
the finish is going to be variable as well. Not to mention that it will
"pop" the imperfections in the portions that are dull now even more in
comparison to the rest.
My recommendation to OP would be, before applying anything else to the
ceiling, take some of the leftover material and finish it as they have
that already up. Then test a satin varnish or oil finish and see if it
does, indeed, solve their objections. My guess is it still "won't suit"
w/o more effort...
But, only they'll be able to judge, but they'll certainly be well served
to experiment on a test section before jumping onto the ceiling...
It is, of course, as you say, just a ceiling and w/ time they'll no
longer even notice it... :)
But, if they want to be happy their effort wasn't in vain from the
Didn't know that would turn out to be an issue or I would of asked up
I identified the worst shiny places and sanded them with a small
electric sander and some rough paper. I blended and feathered the
sanding and then went and re-stained the sanded spaces and feathered
that back out along the boards. After drying the shiny spots aren't
so shiny (at least no harsh edges to the shiny areas). Might leave it
but if it would be better protected with something and that something
would also give a little more uniformity then all the better. Also
some of the knots had fallen completely out so I filled the holes with
stainable wood filler and then stained them with a small artist brush
the same color as the rest of the knot. Worked out pretty good (a lot
better then BIG holes in the wood). The knots and odd grains in the
wood pretty much assures us this won't look fake regardless of what we
Mostly it's the difference in that you didn't sand it all uniformly
before putting it up, did you? Nor did you use a sanding sealer to help
blend out the differences, I expect.
Unfortunately, the only thing that will "unify" the finish at this point
is paint--it's too late to compensate for what wasn't done initially.
The only way for sure is to sand it all to a uniform grit, apply a
sanding sealer and then restain. Not what you wanted to hear, I know.
A varnish or other clearcoat at this point will on accentuate the
differences, not blend them.
I disagree. Although it's difficult to know exactly what the ceiling
looks like, based on what the OP said above--that the differences are in
sheen, not color--it *should* be possible to fix the problem, at least
somewhat, by applying a clear sealer of some kind. I'd say anything
that's not too glossy should work.
The other good suggestion was to try this on some of the leftover wood.
Apply stain the same way you did to the ceiling, preferably to a couple
of pieces of wood that will yield different sheens as your ceiling does,
then overcoat them and see what the result is. I'd bet you can go a long
way towards fixing this problem without having to resort to resanding or
refinishing the whole thing.
"Wikipedia ... it reminds me ... of dogs barking idiotically through
endless nights. It is so bad that a sort of grandeur creeps into it.
Well, I said it _might_, but I'm skeptical they'll be pleased and I'd
strongly recommend against it w/o trying it on a sample piece before.
My objection/concern/whatever you want to call it is that while you
_may_ fix the sheen, the clear finish will accentuate the difference in
the pieces appearance owing to the differing absorption so that what now
appears roughly equivalent in color will then not only have the
reflectivity difference but the color differences are then going to be
Again, it's not possible to tell for sure w/o seeing it, but I'm trying
to prevent a worse situation than they already have that would be even
more difficult to try to repair...
It's easy to say "sure, go ahead" when it's not you who will have the
issues to deal with.
I'd far rather err on the side of caution when I know there's a real
potential for it to come out not at all like they expect...
You missed the most important part of finishing softwoods (especially
pine). Pine needs a pre-conditioner to tone down the effects you are
seeing. You can buy pre-stain conditioners or classically mix up your
own such as really dilute varnish.
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