Finishing Oak - Help wanted

Call me dumb! I finished making a table leg for a friend that said the table was oak. Come to find out it is maple. Now the problem. How to stain the wood an American Oak and not have the grain show up so intense? If I can get rid of the grain and still have the stain show it would look OK. Any ideas?????
Tim
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tdup2 wrote:

??? Maple would have almost no visible grain and is very closed pore as opposed to oak. Sounds backwards. Post pictures somewhere of what you have and what you want to match...
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dpb wrote:

Sorry, I see I misread the posting -- pictures would still help, but certainly making oak look like maple isn't the easy way to go. :)
You'll have to start by completely filling the pores w/ a grain filler and then sanding and refilling -- probably at least three times in an effort to hide the grain texture. Then a wash coat of shellac and a semi-transparent stain would be a starting point--but, you'll take a lot of time and effort to even have a chance of coming close. Unless this leg is a carved leg w/ a lot of effort invested, I'd be tempted to just pitch it and do another of the proper material.
(Of course, I'd expect _some_ compensation even from a friend doing a favor for, for that much grief when they gave me a bum steer--even if it were just my favorite beverage). :)
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Your best bet will be to try to veneer the leg with maple or remake it entirely, I think.
-Nathan
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You can try a whitewash or liming I think they call it. Minwax makes pastels. It is just white paint with some type of thinner.
Or buy some Maple and make a new leg.
Or by some more oak and make the rest of the table.

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Or buy both and have two tables - one for each!
R
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You already know the answer to this: You're going to have to redo it in maple. Hopefully, you've constructed the leg so that the process is repeatable. And that's the thing about this craft, really. Leg number one can take forty hours, leg number two can then be completed in an hour.
Jeff
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wrote:

I'd do the same.
Think of the really nice, oak pattern. <G>
The new leg is never going to look right.
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Paint the legs and the apron antique green or blue.
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That's a tall order. It is going to be like trying to turn a family sedan in to a Pick-Up. There is always going to be the odd looking leg. I would advise starting from scratch, but use Maple this time. ;~)
Or, fill the grain and paint all the legs.
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Thanks for all who replied. Did get some good answers for future finish jobs.
Vote is in. Redo the leg in maple. Cost wise it is probably cheaper and will take less time.
Lesson learned... I have to see it to believe it!
Tim

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(Sorry if this shows up twice - my first post didn't seem to go through)
As others have said the oak will likely never match very well to the maple. However, to specifically answer your question you can minimize the strong contrast of the grain when coloring oak by spraying thin coats of dye stain and just letting it dry without wiping. If you don't have any spraying equipment something like Minwax Polyshades may show the grain less than a more typical wipe-on, wipe-off stain although I'm not sure about this second suggestion.
Charles
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