Staining maple black

I wanted to relate an experience I had today to perhaps save someone some time and money in the future. I have some maple that I want to stain black to approach something ebony-ish. I stopped by Rockler and picked up some black stain from General Finishes. It's a water based stain. After applying it, the color I would most associate with it is "gray". Not exactly what I had in mind. I decided to then follow some other advice that I had read in the archives about using india ink. I stopped by the art supply store and picked up a pint, which also happens to be water-based. I used it by just applying to my test piece and letting it dry without wiping it. Now, that's more like what I had in mind. I may try to go over it again to even things out a bit, but I'm pretty happy with it. Not to mention that a pint of the india ink is about the same price as a half-pint of stain.
todd
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