How well does poplar take stain?

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Tim, what is the best finish for maple? I realize "best" is subjective. I bought some honey amber dye -- and was going to try that on this cherry and maple music stand I"m building. I'm trying to really highlight the figured maple, since it really is only on the 4 legs and the vertical rails of the easel.
I was thinking hit it with a light concentration of the dye, then either shellac or spray it with lacquer. The only problem is, there are cherry parts to this, and I wasn't sure if I should try to do something else to them. Honey Amber dye on cherry doesn't sound good at alllll....
Either that, or I'm leaving it completely natural and using boiled linseed oil.
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I personally favor the light, natural look for maple. BLO or other oil finish will bring out the grain and warm it up nicely. I currently am favoring oil with shellac if I want more protection and some gloss. My current maple project will get danish oil and maybe shellac.
For the combination of maple and cherry I would think that BLO would give you perhaps the best overall look - especially as the cherry darkens with age. I have never worked with cherry, so my opinions there are rather suspect.
Tim Douglass
http://www.DouglassClan.com
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using the Denatured alcohol as a conditioner is fairly common from what I here, paint thiner can be used to, it's been my experience that wood conditioner, like minwax's, works a little better, and you don't have to work as fast, but at 4x+ the cost I don't know if it's worth it Cox West wrote:

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snipped-for-privacy@REMOVETHEOBVIOUSadelphiaDOT.net says...

but I remember being disappointed with the appearance - too bland. Until I put the stain on it... Livened it up really nicely. I just went & looked at it again - still looks good to me.
YMMV, Henry
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On Sat, 11 Dec 2004 18:59:37 -0800, "Mike Rocket J. Squirrel Elliott"

HD does not sell any in expensive wood.... ! But I use Poplar more then I like because the projects I am making (for my wife) have to sell at a price point so darn low that I there is no way to use even expensive lumber like number 2 common pine.... lol...
But if you put on a sealer...then use a gel stain you should be able to have it look pretty good... I am in the process right now of trying to mix my own dyes then spraying the finish... NOT having much luck yet with this but I have only been playing for a few days...
I use Bartlets stain most of the time...just never got good resuylts using minwax products....
Bob Griffiths
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Bob G writes:

It's possible to buy S2S poplar in most areas for under 2 bucks a BF. How much is HD getting for their S4S? Enough to float a loan for a hand plane? It planes easily.
Charlie Self "Man is the only animal that blushes. Or needs to." Mark Twain
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Charlie Self wrote:

Probably easier'n every other wood, soft or hard. Planing poplar doesn't even count as practicing.
I didn't raise the S2S/S4S HD ripoff question because I figured the OP was in the same situation I used to be in. I made stuff out of poplar because Lowe's was the only place I knew to get wood, and it was all I could afford at their exorbitant prices. I made the best of it.
Once I discovered a place to buy real wood, I've never bought poplar there, even though it's cheap. For what I was paying for S4S poplar (with wider than 3" boards done as glue-ups, no less) I can afford a similar quantity of walnut. Let's see, walnut is available. What wood do I want? Duhhhhhhh. :)
It hasn't saved me a dime finding a cheaper source of wood. :)
I really need to look elsewhere still, but I guess I don't care enough to drive out to some yonder (Bedford, say) or fool with mail ordering or whatever. I don't think I would build much more, or much bigger stuff than I do if I had a whole tree cut up and stacked somewhere, and somewhere to stack a whole tree. I have a little bitty shop, and I favor either purely utilitarian projects made out of whatever crap salvage I can scrounge (my Frankenstein music stand, or trebuchet, say) or else I do small projects in (predominantly) walnut that take me weeks or months to complete.
I'm not really aiming to do things faster, or put more wood through the shop just to be doing things in a hurry, and I don't mind doing a little bit to ensure I can continue to go buy wood on the other side of town whenever I want to, even if their prices are high.
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On Sun, 12 Dec 2004 19:42:02 -0500, Silvan

That's why it makes great drawer sides, second only to basswood in my book.
Barry
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On Sun, 12 Dec 2004 14:00:19 -0500, Bob G.

They sell cheaper woods at expensive prices. <G>
Barry
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"Mike Rocket J. Squirrel Elliott"

Poplar blotches like crazy if you use a pigment stain (aka Minwax, etc.). It's best to use a dye based stain.
If you must use a pigment stain (we had to so we could match the door moulding w/ some other ancient door mouldings), do this: - use a wood sealer - sand - use spray on polyurethane in a can - sand - put the pigment stain on (which now sits on the surface) - use spray on polyurethane in a can - sand - use helmsman poly for a few more coats w/ sanding after each coat
This lets the pigment sit on the surface of the poplar (yeah, I know, major hack)-: If you've never used poplar, try some first. And use dye based stain if you can (even if it fades in sunlight)...
Poplar is also pretty soft, so it's prone to denting. Cuts very well though.
ken
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Sorry...first step should be to shellac it, not poly.
ken
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On Sun, 12 Dec 2004 20:21:42 +0000, Ken Yee

It's really not a hack.
Some awfully expensive, household name furniture is stained with a pigment stain over a clear coat, with awesome results.
Barry
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I have great luck staining Poplar. I used to look down on it as a cheap wood but It is so easy to work and stains to look like anything I want, I really like it now. Find a commercial wood supplier and you'll pay about 1/2 as much as you do at HD.
Here is an example of a Poplar project http://www.sonomaproducts.com/JL/JL-BC-POP .
I used General Finishes Rosewood stain with shellac over that. It's a water based finish so be sure to raise the grain with watre and knock it down first. Woodcraft carries the General Finishes products.
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