What sanding grit is best to sand to for maple? I made a maple piece once
before and I went to 220. The stain didn't penetrate very well.
If I sand to 100 will this improve stain penetration?
What is most common?
I made a queen size sleigh bed out of hard maple last year. I experimented
with a few finishing combinations, but none of the pigment-based stains
worked (as I was told to expect). I ended up using a fairly laborious
finishing technique, but it worked quite well. In short, it involved
sealing the surface and then applying an aniline dye for a base, sealing
that and then a glaze was used on top of that. Top coat was satin
water-lox. You can see the recipe (it's by Jeff Jewitt) here:
Yes, you'll get better penetration at 100 grit than 220. Keep in mind that
maple will get blotchy if you use a pigment stain. If it's just a light
stain then it may not be noticable. But if you want to darken
substantially then consider a dye stain or toning (or both). Unless of
course you want the stain to accentuate figured maple. I just did a wall
unit that used about 200 bd-ft of curly birdseye maple and 400 sq-ft of
maple plywood. After much experimentation I settled on a light dye stain +
a Danish oil that had some pigment in it to pop the grain. Turned out
quite nice. I sanded to about 120 grit before finishing, and then used
steel wool to smooth the surface and after the finish dried. It doesn't
have a lot of surface build but that's okay for this project.
Try a water based anniline dye stain. It works for me when I have to stain.
Although, maple is not a very good stainable wood. It's just too damn
dense. Watco oil works ok also. But you are stuck with a limited color
220 grit is typically the final sanding. I use 320 between finishing
coats. There are at least two kinds of maple, soft maple, and hard
(sugar) maple. Hard maple does not take stain well. A course grit
will not improve the stain penetration.
Stain has particles that embed themselves in wood pores, etc. to get the
coloring. All 100 grit sandpaper will do for you is to staining the
scratches left by the paper. With dense woods like hard maple, dying
works the best (visit www.homesteadfinishing.com). Dye is absorbed by
the wood. An alternative is to put the dye in one of the finishing coats
and "tone" the wood.
Bruce, I agree, but I wish to pick a nit with your choice of words. Common
usage of the word "stain" refers to the stuff in the M*nwax can. That stuff
is more often than not a combination of pigments and dyes.
When folks use the term "stain" (in the absence of any modifier) it usually
means that they don't know the difference.
I would respectfully suggest the term "Pigmented Stain" unless someone can
offer a more appropriate term.
Yes! good points Steve.
There are 100% pigments on the market labeled as "stain" but most are a
of pigment and dye (mostly pigment).
The way to tell is if there is sediment in the can. Dye (aniline) has no
dissolves completely. Pure pigments would settle out and have a clear
layer of fluid
(the binder + solvent carrier) above after sitting on the shelf for a
long time. Minwacked
"stain" has both properties.
Both pigment and dye "stain" the wood, but pigment does it by leaving
small dark particles
embedded in the pores of the wood, dyes actually are absorbed into the
of the wood. paint is a pigment, although there is a lot more of it than
in a pigment stain and
the binder keeps it in suspension until it sets. With a pigment you are
the wood with thinned paint. The quest to "stain" maple requires dye
since the smooth, pore-free surface
has very few traps to hold pigments from a pigment stain. The combo
products will eventually work since
the dye component will soak into the structure of the wood, but
typically the dye component has a lighter shade
than the pigment part (in my experience) so it will never get as dark as
the products color sample
chip looks (usually on a softwood like pine). One can try a much darker
product that the desired color
target on maple by selecting the primary tone desired, i.e. walnut for a
tan or dark mahogany for a more
reddish (light cherry) tone. This avoids some of the pains locating a
true dye locally, but dye is still the only
way to get much of a color change while maintaining clarity.
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