do i need to varnish after staining

Stain manufacturers will recommend their own conditioners. If you like woodworking projects that involve staining, check out my doll house book case build plans, my DIY paver and wood outdoor coffee table, and our AC unit screen. When you’ve removed the finish completely, brush off the bulk of the dust and wipe down the entire piece using tack cloth. It basically fills in the pores and sinks in between the fibers of the wood, creating a barrier against moisture, which could cause rot and weakening of the wood. If using a paintbrush, apply the … … I did a third coat on my piece because I am popping this on top of a little Ikea dresser and expect it to get a decent amount of traffic. It’s such a nice way to upgrade a low-end piece of furniture. By this, we can see that sanding after staining affects the finished product not only in terms of smoothness but in terms of color as well. Basically, conditioner will stabilize the wood to allow stain to penetrate more evenly. Just dip the rag in the stain and wipe it on the piece!). Stain can also protect against the deteriorating effects of sunlight and strength the wood a bit more against impact and damage. Some finish also needs around 72 hours of the drying process. You may be wondering if you can simply use paint over the wood and leave it at that. Me too. There are three major types of wood stains: resin, alkyd, and oil. Two coats is often enough, but you can repeat step #4 and do a third coat if you’d like. Brush the stain. You DO NOT need to sand down to bare wood. Thank you! If you want to hear from me, drop your email below! Follow the directions and warnings from your particular brand. Pine is another species of tree whose natural and open grain may be more susceptible to a rough, unattractive look when you try to stain it. Applying a stain is a bit trickier than sealers, and is best left to professionals. Please click the link in the email I just sent you—I just need to confirm it's really you to prevent spam :), Copyright by Brittany Goldwyn, 2020 | Trellis Framework by Mediavine. For the best outcome, remove any grime, dust, or debris by roughing-up and cleaning the old coat of varnish first. It will bubble as you brush it on. It is such an easy way to give a piece more depth or to add a classic touch to a piece and make it look more expensive. After the old stain is gone, applying new stain is relatively simple. If you put a little bit too much on, just gently brush it out over the unstained areas. You don’t need to use too much; a little bit goes a long way. To counteract this, you can sand a bit. He also holds a bachelor's degree in English from Iowa University. If you are planning to use white pine, limit yourself to light stains only. Instead, wipe the surface down with a soft, dry cloth, or you can vacuum the surface carefully to remove that extra dust. But you do need to remove all of the lacquer, varnish or anything that will prevent new stain from absorbing into the wood. Saturate the wood with stain by brushing a liberal coat quickly over the entire surface. It is best to sand very lightly, using very fine sandpaper like 220 grit. Some projects may be fine with only a coat of stain. Just make sure the existing finish is totally sanded down to the bare wood! Thanks for signing up! For previously finished wood, yes, you need to sand before applying gel stain. Imagine that the first piece of wood was sanded with 120-grit sandpaper. Lacquer and varnish are film-forming top coats used to protect and add luster to wood, and are typically applied over stain after it's dry. Work in manageable areas. The polyurethane with smooth it out further as you apply additional coats. Be sure that you pay attention to the recommendations including on the label of the product you are using. you don’t need to sand after staining. Oak, ash, and chestnut handle stain well, but wood such as maple, poplar, and birch do not handle stain very well at all. Water-Based Stains. For additional water resistance and durability, you can add a layer of polyurethane, shellac, lacquer, or some other type of sealer. A wood stain helps to protect your wooden project. Are lower in odor than oil-based stains. If you do not sand well, and you simply do a rough job of it, you will have exposed, open cells in the grain that soak in too much stain and create a much greater, darker contrast than you are probably looking for. Certain types of wood just don’t work well with traditional stains. Make sure you apply your stain (and polyurethane) in a well-ventilated area. Specializing in building and renovating homes, Thomas Luttrell has worked in homebuilding since 2002. (This post contains affiliate links. Others will need additional protection from wear and the elements. Here is the piece drying on my workspace, aka my little balcony: And that’s it! It’s important to wipe away excess stain as you apply each coat. That way, you won’t have sticky buildup to deal with when it’s time to move on and add a fresh layer. As you do more woodworking and carpentry projects, you will get a better feeling for how the wood should look and feel at each stage, and what you need to do to achieve the results you want. Varnishing. … Minwax tends to be the go-to name in pre-stains and pre-treatment, so if you are not sure where to begin, we would suggest starting out with a good Minwax wood conditioner, followed by a high-quality stain. differences between polyurethane and polycrylic, Miscellaneous: Drop cloth for work area, screw driver to open cans and stir, disposable gloves. Fills in wood grain after staining for a smooth finish. Some hardwoods will "close up" and hardly except your stain if you sand all the way to 220 grit. If it isn’t unfinished, the stain won’t be able to soak into the wood. I didn’t think I needed it because the wood wasn’t soft but the stain soaked in so unevenly and looked pretty awful. Paint thinner works best for thinning varnish. Sometimes referred to generically, lacquer and varnish are not the same thing. Those bubbles drive me insane ;) Hope to see it on your Ikea dresser. Cherry, mahogany, and similar woods don’t need much or any color, so it’s best to use light or transparent stains, so the natural grain and colors shine through. You will need to let the stain dry for about 48 hours before you can varnish … This is what makes using gel stain … Apply the stain to the panels first, you will need to use a brush to get the stain into the grooves and corners. I’m just using polyurethane for this tutorial. Posted on Last updated: October 5, 2020 Categories DIY, DIY Furniture. Type above and press Enter to search. Allow the stain to dry 6 to 8 hours. Apply a generous amount of stain to the floor or project and work it into the grain and then wipe it right off. Wipe off the excess stain using a clean cloth. With those you would be better off to stop at 120 or 150. I’d love to update it with fresh paint and new hardware, but I’ve heard that you can’t get good results painting over stain. When you apply the stain … Break down the edges for a more finished look. You don't need to remove all of the old stain to apply darker stain. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. What you probably have from using the birch ply, even with the minwax stain… Below are before and after photos of a bench I used an electric sander to sand the finish off of. Stain actually soaks into the wood, changing it chemically and preventing the encroachment of moisture, which could cause mold and decay. To counteract this effect, try using a pre-stain or conditioner on the wood before you stain it. Some soft woods, such as the less expensive pine you buy at the box stores can become blotchy after you stain them. Some people like to begin with 100 grit, then move to 150 grit, and end with a round of 220 grit. Do NOT do … Do I need to sand before applying gel stain? Aluminum oxide sandpaper will self-sharpen as you use it. If you want a very smooth, finely sanded surface, try a higher grit, like 150 or 180, or even higher depending on the project. You can read more about that here. This removes any excess stain. If the stain begins to dry before you wipe it off, you're tackling too much area; this is more likely to happen using water-based stain. Topcoat/Finish. Just use a paintbrush or a rag to lay a thin layer of the stain and let it dry. Remember, you put the stain on unfinished wood, so you need to seal the stain to protect it. Talk to you soon! This post shares tips about how to stain and finish wood. Note: There are a number of finishes you can use. Step 1: If you didn’t have to strip a finish off of your piece, go ahead and use a fine grit (like#220) sandpaper to polish your piece. But the result in the end is worth it! (Note: I do not use pre-stain wood conditioner, but if you’d like to, here is one that has good reviews.). Now you need to apply the stain … You should definitely use pre-stain or wood conditioning products for these types of lumber. Then, beginning on one side of the piece, start painting the stain on in the direction of the wood grain. Oil-based varnishes generally add a slight amber tone to your final finish, while water-based varnishes are clear. Brush in the direction of the grain. I was intimidated when I first started learning how to stain wood, but I actually think staining is an easier process than painting. Cherry, mahogany, and similar woods don’t need much or any color, so it’s best to use light or transparent stains, so the natural grain and colors shine through. The right level of opacity depends on the type of surface and your personal preference. Do not dampen a cloth and wipe the area. Apply 2 Coats Of The Stain. I used 5 gallon paint … That is certainly an option; however, it is important to note that paint does not provide the same kind of protection that stain does. When applied, the stain acts as a binder, securing the wood against humidity, rot, and other types of decay. Step 4: When the first coat of polyurethane dries, grab the #220 grit or higher sandpaper and very lightly do a quick sand over the entire piece. This coarser type of sandpaper leaves a different scratch pattern on the surface of the wood. In  the second photo, I had completely finished sanding down the top, but I only gave a light sand to the body since I wasn’t staining that part–just painting it. It can serve as a barrier to some moisture, especially if you use a water-resistant exterior paint, but it will eventually chip, thin, or flake off, and then the wood underneath will be completely vulnerable. You have to have the right tools, the right kind of wood for the project, and plenty of time for the longer stages of the process, like sanding and finishing. You don’t want to be trapped in a room with this stuff! Require only soap and water for clean-up. It doesn't need much added in to get it to spray evenly. Otherwise, you end up with darker overlapping edges where you ended and then picked up again. Ultimately, our recommendation is that you avoid sanding after staining or simply use a very gentle scuff sanding method if you notice roughness. Staining and finishing wood is an easy way to make it beautiful and durable for any project. I love staining wood. After the stain has dried, it’s time for the first finishing coat. The higher the number, the finer the grade. Many of the bubbles will also pop as the finish dries. Sandpaper comes in grades (or grits). For example, the piece I’m working with for this post will be the new top to an Ikea dresser. Step 5: When you’re done sanding, wipe down the piece with your tack cloth and apply a second coat of polyurethane. Again, watch for side drips! Press Esc to cancel. Don’t leave any puddles or wet spots. Brush a coat of polyurethane varnish onto the surface, then finish … Sand thoroughly before you apply the first coat of stain. Have a piece I want to to change to a white washed look..your piece is beautiful!! Remember, you put the stain on unfinished wood, so you need to seal the stain … Polyurethane forms a thicker, hard coating that is very durable and more waterproof than varnish. You can use an electric sander, a handle hand sander, or even just a piece of sand paper. Stain usually cannot be removed after application, so it’s better to apply thinner coats and add more as needed, rather than apply too much and have a darker color than you want. Sometimes, depending on the wood you are using or the type of stain you have purchased, you will find that the water component of the stain has lifted the grain again, making it more prominent and rendering the top surface of the wood rougher than you would like. Continue applying thin layers of stain and allow each layer to dry thoroughly before you add the next one. One more thing to keep in mind is that sandpaper, while it has a smoothing effect overall, tends to open up the grain of the wood more, especially when you are using a coarser type of sandpaper. There are also water-based stains available. Isn’t it pretty? Keep adding varnish as you need it, but try to plan so you end up with an empty tray. Sand a few times, with progressively finer grit sandpaper. When you're through, toss the roller sleeve and let the wet varnish dry in the pan. If you are not sure how firmly to sand, watch a video that demonstrates the “scuff sanding” technique. 5. Stir the stain well, then use a clean cloth to rub the stain into the wood in a circular motion. Do I need to further finish the wood with a finish/top coat or similar product to protect my bedding? First, let’s talk about how sanding can affect wood when you do it between coats of stain or right before a coat of stain. I put this on my Ikea Rast dresser to upgrade it. After this, let the stain dry for about 24 hours (up to 48 hours if you’re working in a super humid environment). When using Water Based Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner, allow it to penetrate for 1-5 minutes, then remove any excess. Oak, ash, and chestnut handle stain well, but wood such as maple, poplar, and birch do not handle stain … You can just lightly pass the sandpaper over the surface, working with the grain of the wood. After the stain has dried, it’s time for the first finishing coat. No, do not sand the straight stain. After the panels are done, do … [CDATA[ amzn_assoc_placement = "adunit0"; amzn_assoc_search_bar = "true"; amzn_assoc_tracking_id = "bybrigol-20"; amzn_assoc_ad_mode = "manual"; amzn_assoc_ad_type = "smart"; amzn_assoc_marketplace = "amazon"; amzn_assoc_region = "US"; amzn_assoc_title = "Shop Supplies:"; amzn_assoc_linkid = "504998ad125a482e7cc7df2304506c6a"; amzn_assoc_asins = "B00CXCG08O,B00LI166GC,B00FMKABZ2,B003L2DDAI,B01GWD3LVS,B01GEUA2PC,B01D8UD70I,B01FRNXTAM"; // ]]> Can I use same process from going from a darker stain to a white stain. Wipe the stain on with a rag, and brush it into the corners and grooves. That means that it has no primer, paint, or finish of any kind on it. It is not recommended and should really be avoided if possible as it will peel and blister. The type of wood you are using for the project has an effect on how well the stain is accepted. Staining over a varnish is possible, but set your expectations right. And the process isn’t as difficult as you probably think it is, either. our recommendation is that you avoid sanding after staining or simply use a very gentle scuff sanding method if you notice roughness. Start at the top and work your way down. The higher or finer the grit, the more easily you can smooth out and eliminate all those little imperfections. Then, using tack cloth, wipe down the piece to remove any small pieces of dust. When you are staining, make sure you keep a wet edge and stain the entire project in one session without stopping if at all possible. To avoid or lessen this effect you can use a wood conditioner. They can become splotchy and discolored when you try to stain them. Paint, on the other hand, sits on top of the wood surface. If you do find you need … Varnish … When it dries, just peel the varnish … Varnishes protect with a thin coating. Medium grits are typically best for removing finishes (#120 and #150), and very fine grits (like#220) are used to buff a piece of wood before sanding or between finish coats. Watch for side drips. So the stain doesn’t lodge and collects as heavily across the wood surface. 6. Ace's recommendation is good to build up a few layers then sand with 320. Some manufacturers may include recommendations for sanding after staining or between coats, while others do not. Quickly brush or wipe on the conditioner, let it penetrate and wipe it off, just like stain. Thank you, Angie!! Keep in mind that you will probably have to do a few coats of stain to provide the level of protection you want for your project. Couple of suggestions. Since Water Based Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner causes the wood fibers to swell, you will need to lightly sand the surface with a fine grade sandpaper 15-30 minutes after … Dry faster, enabling you to stain and finish in one day. Once you’ve taken off the old finish, move on to sanding the cabinets with 80- to 120-grit sandpaper. Major upgrade! Applying polyurethane after staining is a little trickier, but the ability to sand out issues and apply multiple coats makes it pretty forgiving as well. Yes! And that can sometimes reveal additional imperfections that you didn’t see before. If you worry about the grain raising after staining i would recommend wetting the surface evenly with water after doing initial sanding then finish sand when dry. Great stain color! If you take a look at three different pieces of wood, all the same type of lumber, that have been sanding at different points during the finishing process, or with a different grit level of sandpaper, you will find that every one of them has a slightly different hue to the grain. - I want to make sure that the stain will not rub off on the bedding. You can also practice using scrap lumber, so you get a feel for the process and products that seem to work best for you and yield the final result you want for the piece you are creating. Do NOT skip wood conditioner. Try aluminum oxide sandpaper if you have a large surface to work over. Check boxes below for what you want to see—I won't send you anything else. However, it is incredibly important if you want a truly beautiful, smooth result at the end of the project. With 150 or 180 sandpaper, there is less of a scratch pattern, fewer marks. You need to wait for one to two days in most cases. Step 3:  Yes! Read about the differences between polyurethane and polycrylic. It’s okay if you want to stain a finished piece of wood…you just have to sand everything off first! Immediately wipe it off with a dry cloth. Check boxes below for what you want to see—I won't send you anything else. //

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