For a real light oak color, I like the "Golden Oak" stains also.
On red oak, I've had good luck with the Watco "Golden Oak" oil based
finishes, topped with a Bartley's Gel Varnish .
For white oak, ZARS 114 Provincial is my current favorite for a slightly
darker finish, but still light by most standards. Poly/oil
(tung/blo/varnish) top coats darkens the 114 Provincial just slightly. With
amber shellac top coats, it gets a more pronounced, 'aged' appearance.
John Paquay's got a good method for oil staining/finishing using Watco on
his website ... give it a look. The part about wet sanding after about the
third coat of Danish oil works very well with oak of any type.
Last update: 8/11/03
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