I'm refinishing a desk for SWMBO.
It's red oak (?), has been completely stripped, and sanded to 220.
I've been trying to find the 'darkness' that she wants. Minwax Red Mahogany
(225) has been decided on as the color. The grain color is acceptable, but the
areas in between the grain lines are too "yellow" (light).
So far I've tried:
1, 2, and 3 coats of stain, 10 minutes each, wiped both with and across the
grain, keeping it wet the whole standing time. On top of this, 1, 2, and 3
coats of water-based poly, and 1, 2, and 3 coats of oil-based poly with the
first two rubbed on the third brushed on.
I've only got about two square feet of wood left to test on before I have to
start stripping my first tests.
One obvious option is to tint/dye the desk darker before staining. That's
unacceptable, given my expertise combined with the sheer size of the desk.
The next appears to be to let the stain stay on longer, but 15 minutes is the
recommended maximum, and I'm already at 10. I know what happens if you wait too
The next option takes a little more work, and that's to resand with coarser grit
in hopes of opening up the wood some.
Norm showed using a wood filler and a glaze to darken a chest top. I don't have
any experience with or know anything about either, but they <<seem>> to be easy
enough to try.
Also, all surfaces and drawers are or resemble raised panels. That leaves a lot
of end grain to try to dodge and blend in to keep from getting it too dark.
Suggestions? Wood filler?
Thanks in advance for comments and suggestions.