Creatively Living
Creatively Living
  • Hometalker
  • Richland, WA
Asked on Jun 25, 2013

Any home-made stain specialists out there?

Creatively LivingKMS WoodworksZ
+16

Answered

Does anyone have a good reason not to use home-made stain on a wood floor? Does is fade more quickly?
19 answers
  • White Oak Studio Designs
    on Jun 25, 2013

    The one thing I can think of is, what about when you have to touch up areas? It's like making a custom color of paint, When its time to repair/repaint its harder because instead of going to have a "standard" color remixed for the quick touch up, you have to get a whole new color mixed and repair the entire room. Stain is not that expensive, why would you want a homemade color vs. a store bought color? BLOG: http://smallhouseunderabigsky.wordpress.com

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Jun 26, 2013

    One of the questions would be why?...are you looking for a color that is not available? Most fading issues have to deal with how the "stain" is protected. Stain is not a final finish and must be covered with some protective layer. In most floor applications this is generally a "poly" type product. Personally I like the look of oil based over water based hands down. I also like the look of "natural" ie: wood without stain. A decent oil finish can really "pop" the grain and let the woods beauty shine through. http://www.hometalk.com/919391/the-fun-part Aside from regular oil based stains, aniline dyes are also widely used in wood working. These are available in water soluble versions as well as oil and Alcohol versions. http://woodworker.com/water-soluble-lt-gold-oak-aniline-dye-mssu-843-924.asp

  • Creatively Living
    on Jun 26, 2013

    @donnaallgaierlamberti@gmail.com and @KMS Woodworks, I am looking for a light gray stain for a 100 yr old + pine floor. I'm really don't like the yellow/reddish undertones that most oil based products cause, but the stores around me can only make certain water-based stains, and they can't make any oil based that are colored, so I'm left with making my own. I have one that I do like, but just wanted to see if anyone had experience with a home-made stain's long lasting results.

  • Creatively Living
    on Jun 26, 2013

    @KMS Woodworks my wood floor question today is water based poly -vs- wax, as I mentioned before, I really don't want any yellow undertones to come out. What do you think of wax? It's so popular right now, but my mother remember's the old days of wax and is screaming "don't"! lol And other thoughts on something that wouldn't yellow the floor but would seal it?

  • White Oak Studio Designs
    on Jun 26, 2013

    I have no experience with oil based stains. Have you looked at transparent stains? They make some very pretty gray ones...

  • Z
    on Jun 26, 2013

    I can answer that one Katie. For a non-yellowing finish you'll want water based polyurethane. As for your gray floor, are you thinking of using the steel wool and vinegar method when you mention home made stain?

  • Creatively Living
    on Jun 26, 2013

    Thanks @Z ! I have read that multiple coats of the water-based poly will leave a filmy look within 3-5 years? Have you ever heard this before? Yes, I used the vinegar/coffee/steel wool recipe. Looks beautiful, I'm just wondering if the color changes as time goes on. One person has told me that it does.

  • Z
    on Jun 26, 2013

    Most wood stains darken over the years Katie. I've not tried the vinegar steel wool stain personally so I can't help you on that one. I know you can change the color from gray to various colors by adding a third ingredient, as you mentioned coffee. I can help you on the water based poly. Since I'm highly allergic to oil based stains we have finished all our wood work using water based stains and polyurethane. So far I see no filmy look at all. It's quite milky looking going on but dries clear and as far as I can tell stays that way. We've been working on this for close to ten years now so I would think if it was going to get filmy it would have done so by now. I hope that helps.

  • Creatively Living
    on Jun 27, 2013

    Wonderful! Thanks for your help @Z !

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Jun 27, 2013

    @Creatively Living I refinished my first hardwood floor back in 1986 and since then have seen just about every product available. Late last year I did get to use a product I had never seen before. Monocoat. This is a European product that is now available in the US. It is a 0 VOC oil based product that is applied in a single application. Unlike typical poly ( water or oil based) this product penetrates the wood much like the historic Linseed oil finishes. It is available in several "grey" type colors. The color I used last fall in a near 90 year old historic home was a custom bled the home owner and I mixed up. It was mostly the "natural" with a dash of "cherry". I did a write up on it in this post. http://www.hometalk.com/738270/green-alternative-to-poly-for-your-hardwood-flooring In this article I wrote for Networx, the park service often uses wax as the sacrificial top layer...you just need to stay on top of your maintenance plan. http://www.networx.com/article/exotic-wood-floor-finishes-you-havent-s

  • Z
    on Jun 27, 2013

    I forgot all about that brand @Kevin. I clipped it when you first shared it and we "talked" a bit about it, which I remembered once I visited your link. Thanks for the reminder.

  • Creatively Living
    on Jun 27, 2013

    Thanks for the info everyone @Z and @KMS Woodworks !

  • Z
    on Jun 27, 2013

    Have you made a decision yet Katie?

  • Creatively Living
    on Jun 27, 2013

    I ended up not doing the hm made stain @Z I couldn't get it to look consistent enough on the 100 yr old pine. :( I think I'm going to go dark.

  • Z
    on Jun 28, 2013

    That ought to look pretty Katie. Be sure and take lots of pictures of the process please.

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Jun 28, 2013

    When staining pine the use of a "wood conditioner" or pre wetting with thinner will give more consistent color distribution...this also help when staining cherry. These woods tend to look blotchy with out this step. This is more obvious with darker stains.

  • Creatively Living
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Thanks for the tip @KMS Woodworks! I did read up on that.This is the first time I've known about pre-wood conditioner. Here's a good question though: I really don't want very yellow or reddish undertones (which is difficult with a yellow-red pine. Looks like Southern Pine to me.) Should I use provincial, or special walnut or Jacobean? I think special walnut maybe darker than I want to go. I'm looking for a medium dark without too much yellow or red. Any suggestions for stain color? Thanks!

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I have not used the Jacobean, but have done a few pieces with the English Chestnut. I built a lap desk for one of my daughters a while back. It is Russian Olive wood with an English Chestnut stain. http://www.hometalk.com/1077217/walnut-and-leather-lap-desk. One thing to keep in mind is that darker floors tend to show dirt more readily than lighter colors.

  • Creatively Living
    on Jun 29, 2013

    Beautiful @KMS Woodworks. I do like that color!

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