A while back I asked about ways to make Home Depot cheapo
lauan doors look better. Thanks all who responded.
I was hoping to make the wood more mahogany-esque. While
not a silk purse from a sow's ear, I'm quite pleased with the
I would call the average between the two close-ups the actual
result, but as you can see it really depends on the light.
Here's what I did:
1. Sanded with a random sanding sponge I had laying about,
I'm guessing the grit was 150 or so. Seriously! The doors
were reasonably sanded already. Removed dust with poly
2. Sealed with a thin (but not thinned) coat of Waterlox.
-I used Waterlox because in Flexner's book he recommended it
on mahogany. It did nothing for the blah color of the lauan,
or the grain. Experimenting with putting stain over top of
it looked good, so Waterlox went from being the finish to
being the sealer.
-Note: Waterlox is strong smelling for a LONG time. I left the
doors out in the garage for a couple weeks. Other than the
odor, it's a great product.
3. Applied two coats of Minwax red mahogany oil stain per
directions on can -- apply decent amount across grain, wipe
off with grain.
4. Topped off with two coats General Finishes' Gel Topcoat, a
wipe-on varnish/urethane. I used this mainly because I had
it on hand. I like it because it can be applied by hand, is low
odor, and is a satin finish.
Not a finishing schedule for something you need quickly, but
very easy to do and worth the wait.