I now have most of the white oak for my desk. I want to join the drawers
with half-blind dovetails (which I have not done to date - only through
dovetails). My question is this: what is the best way to stain the oak
so as not to bleed over or stain the poplar drawer sides? Do I first
stain the drawer fronts then cut the dovetails, or do I use a small
paint brush to stain the end grain? Or is there a better way. I will be
staining the oak with either a dark walnut or red mahogany stain. And I
want the contrast of the two woods to show at the joinery.
Thanks In Advance, as always!
It should be an easy matter to stain the drawer fronts, leaving the pin
sockets clear of stain, before you assemble the drawers. IME, you would
certainly want to do this _after_ cutting and fitting the joint, though. I
would also put a "wash coat" of 1# shellac on the poplar sides while I was
This method will have the added advantage of making glue squeeze out easier
to clean up on both pieces.
With the end grain showing on the drawer front pins, it has been my
experience that you will already have a built-in contrast with the poplar
sides, even should you stain both parts. Not sanding the end grain of the
drawer front to too fine a grit will also increase the contrast when stain
Fuming white oak does look awfully nice, though.
I've long considering trying this. I'm curious. Would I need to place a
fan inside the "booth" in order to circulate the fumes or would it be ok to
just let it condense randomly? Would this cause an uneven appearance to the
final finish? Does this process raise the grain at all? Is it possible to
sand the piece afterwards? Do I need to wash/dilute the piece after the
fuming is completed? Also, is this effect similar to the aging changing
that appear on cherry? I see it contains tannins as well, but would fuming
cherry give the same look as aged cherry? What causes the color change over
time, and why aren't other tannic woods affected in the same way?
I do have a carbon filter mask. Is this sufficient to filter the fumes?
I've used it to spray paint and and can't smell anything with it on.
I found the FAQ at
am hoping for some additional information.
I'm no expert but I have fumed white Oak once... soon to do it for a big
project. I'll try.
No. The amonia fumes mix evenly with the "air" on their own.
Would this cause an uneven appearance to the
Not that I noticed. I would not expect it to raise gain any more than having
it start in a humid (no condensation) environment.
Yes. It appeared to penetrate deeply... sorry I can't quantify that.
Idunno. I polyed over the threashold that I did without any further
treatment, with good results/
UV radiation (sunlight) causes color change in cherry. I have heard that lye
will also cause a color change. I would not assume that any "quick" process
is going to give identical results to the classic slow method. You'll just
have to try.
Ditto I found that it was amazing how well a carbon filter worked when
applying oil-based poly to my dad's HW floors. I could not smell a thing and
then you pull off the mask and "whoa..."
Take a look at the following and then re-ask any questions you have left.
IIRC, David Eisan fumed some cherry recently ... might want to ping him and
ask how it turned out, and what he did.
Oak fronts, Poplar sides. You want the front HB dove tails to have stain
but not the sides. Why not the sides? Anyway, the drawer front portion of
the HBDT, the pins cut into the end grain, will naturally soak up more
stain and you will still have contrast even if you were using oak all the
|I now have most of the white oak for my desk. I want to join the drawers
|with half-blind dovetails (which I have not done to date - only through
|dovetails). My question is this: what is the best way to stain the oak
|so as not to bleed over or stain the poplar drawer sides? Do I first
|stain the drawer fronts then cut the dovetails, or do I use a small
|paint brush to stain the end grain? Or is there a better way. I will be
|staining the oak with either a dark walnut or red mahogany stain. And I
|want the contrast of the two woods to show at the joinery.
What I did in the same situation with cherry/poplar drawers where I
was staining the cherry (yeah, I know you should never stain cherry)
was cut the joinery, blue tape the DT sockets and stain away.
I sprayed Enduro WB lacquer as a top coat on all surfaces, also done
before glue up. Makes cleaning up any squeeze out a snap.
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