A friend is trying to stain his own kitchen cabinets. (His family bailed
out on him.) He is using a Minwax polyurethane stain which is going on ok
on the flat sections but bulking up in corners and around edges and such.
He says it is oil based and he is using an oil based poly brush.
Normally I stain and then poly, if I poly at all. I need suggestions on the
best way to remedy his problem, preferably using the stain he already has
purchased. Would it be better to rag it on? Or thin it? Ay suggestions
This is why I limit my staining.
My 'sperience w/ it tells me I'd never use it again...I've use a lot of
Minwax original oil stain and the old original oil finish and you can do
very good job w/ it but the hybrid product is just a disaster imo.
My daughter/SIL started it on some kitchen cabinets of theirs and
similar problems -- best I ever managed was to thin it significantly and
use it as a wiping varnish to get a uniform color. Then buffed it w/
400 wet/dry using it dry to get a little scratch and used a different
poly clear varnish for topcoat--don't recall now which. End result not
great but ok considering the starting point and the sorry base cabinets
they were to begin with, anyway...but it was a lot more work than would
have needed to fixup the mess the first coat left.
He is applying too much.
What he has is varnish with color in it: a "toner". Ideally, varnish should
be flowed on in a fairly thick coat but one has the exercise some restraint
in the amount. It also needs to be applied evenly. If it isn't even, brush
When I varnish I apply a brush load, tip out the sides of the applied area
and start the next brush load ahead of where I stopped with the previous; it
is then dragged back to #1 then ahead to new area, then edges tipped. Et
For corners, he would do well to do them the same way one cuts in an edge
when painting; i.e., hold the brush at an angle and sort of push a small
amount into the edge with the brush tip and drag it along; when the brush
tip is depleted, roll the brush a bit more toward 90 degrees. Easy to do,
hard to explain.
_ANY_ of this particular product is too much.. :( :)
This particular product is one I cannot understand how it ever got
introduced and how it survives on the market--only the inertia of the
Minwax name keeps it afloat I think.
It is an _extremely_ difficult to flow product and doesn't suit well to
flowing out w/ even a good quality brush--it gets tacky almost immediately.
Don't ever try it thinking it's a saver of time over the two-step
process if you want anything at all controllable in how it turns out
other than, perhaps, a large flat table top.
I wasn't there for the staining attempt, but surprisingly most of the
stain went on evenly. However ... yes, here it come ... absolutely no
prep was done.
He purchased bare cabinets from Lowe's and installed them, unstained.
Now he is trying to stain them in place, no sanding, no conditioner,
no other prep at all. He is upset because it's dripping and running.
Hmm, I wonder why?
I don't get it. Is everyone really that lazy? No prep, no protection
to the floor? New appliances in the way?
This kitchen is about ten square feet with a new large fridge and
stove halfway out from the walls where they will eventually sit. He
removed one door, laid it across other bare cabinets, and tried
staining one flat and ended up dripping and splashing.
I'm suddenly feeling extremely old and cranky. I can't fathom why
anyone would want to not put in the amount of effort required to do a
job right they first time. If I had to live with the cabinets, you can
be sure they'd be as perfect as possible. Guess I am crazy?
Oh, and no sanding what so ever. I ran my fingers across a few doors
and damn near came away with several splinters. I was a little
surprised they were so rough from the store but then again not,
considering they probably expect the buyer to do that work. I couldn't
live with 50 grit cabinets.
I have a feeling peeps are going to try and talk me into doing this
project, and frankly I don't want to. There is almost no room to move
let alone work, and with as bad as my current physical ailments have
been acting up this winter, I'm in no mood to make them worse by
climbing all around and over these things. Guess I'm selfish too?
Would it be better to rag it on? Or thin it? Ay suggestions
You can get beautiful results with this stuff but you have to brush it on p
erfectly. Any overlap and you have uneven results. If he really wants to do
it, he could thin it some with mineral spirits and also keep a can of spir
its to dip the brush to keep it open a bit longer when he needs to brush ou
t the inconsistencies.
However, I would suggest the best solution at this point is to select his f
avorite color of interior gloss or semi-gloss latex.
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