Wood filler

I seem to remember hearing that a low cost substitute for wood filler is dry wall "mud". Anybody ever hear of this and is mud different that tape joint compound? I believe you can add either acrylic (oil) or water based pigments to turn it into a replacement for filler.
When I say filler, I am referring to filling in the grain on open pore woods such as mahogany or oak to achieve an ultra smooth finish. I believe the filler goes on after the staining and sealing processes are complete, but I have to go back to the books to check this out. Any recommendations on books?
I'm building a coffee table out of mahogany ($$$) and want it to look great when finished.
TIA
Dustmaker
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On Wed, 14 Jan 2004 14:37:56 -0600, "Dustmaker"

based) to fill the grain on woods that I was going to paint. Paint it onto the wood, sand smooth (it will sand very smooth), then paint for a great finish. Not sure if I'd be brave enough to use it on a hardwood that I was not painting.
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Take a look at the Mc Feeley catalog and the Crystalac clear pore filler and save yourself a few headaches.
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Mike G.
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You're building a coffee table out of mahogany ($$$) and want it to look great and are trying to save a dollar on filler?
Mud shrinks more than good wood fillers.

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You're right! I'll experiment later with the wood filler on some Oak plywood. I'll order some of the right stuff from one of the more highly regarded suppliers.
Dustmaker

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There are several compounds for drywall; jointing finishing interior exterior adherance, to name a few.
You'd need to check the specs of the packet in consideration. I've used it to fill holes in my sister's house - hardwood exterior and it has been there for around 6 years with no noticeable deterioration. My carpenter friend says it can be used but not on the exterior since it tends to crack with expansion etc. I was pretty fussy with preparation and painting so that might account for the longevity.
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