Stainable wood filler

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I have a beautiful desk that has a slight crack the top. I want to sand and stain it, but have yet to come across a wood filler that takes stain properly. Does anyone have any tips/good ideas?
  11 answers
  • Typically you would use a crack filler that is already colored the same as the stain. Once you know what you want, the paint store should be able to help you choose something that will blend in. Normal wood filler does not blend well as its different then the wood that your staining and different woods do not absorb the color in the same way. Many because of the material that the fillers are made with simply do not take stain and are painted. But using a wood conditioner that will help the stain match better might work, You can also use a powdered wood putty and use the stain to mix it instead of water. All of these ideas are dependent upon the size of the crack in the wood. Can you put glue in it and use bar clamps to squeeze the crack back together? Just be sure to use the proper wood glue.
    • See 2 previous
    • Jill B Jill B on Mar 25, 2014
      @Woodbridge Environmental Tiptophouse.com Thanks so much for your help! Just need some bar or pipe clamps. :) Thanks
  • Funnygirl Funnygirl on Mar 25, 2014
    If the crack isn't too deep you might be able to sand it down
  • Terri Dottore Terri Dottore on Mar 25, 2014
    Save the sawdust and mix it with your stain
  • White Oak Studio Designs White Oak Studio Designs on Mar 26, 2014
    I have never successfully been able to get a crack filler to match either. I either paint that part of the piece of furniture or sand and refinish and allow the imperfection to remain.
  • Robin Robin on Mar 26, 2014
    I have used wood glue with saw dust. Make a thick past and push into the crack. let dry for 48 hours then sand down and stain. try this on stray piece of wood first to make sure that it give you the look that you like.
  • Although Jill's repair requires her to re-glue and clamp to fix, The filling of the crack suggestions may work and then again may not. Sawdust idea works ok some of the time and others which is most fails. The reason why is the glue, not the sawdust part. Some glues or adhesives simply will not take stain. Its their chemical make up. Some do. So if someone was to use a glue and sawdust method, then try to stain. The glue if it did not take the stain properly would end up in a condition worse then just the crack itself as you would not be able to remove it. If you were to paint a repair fixed like that, you would have much better success, But I would personally not use that method unless there was no other option. They do make a powdered filler that is mixed with water called wood hardening putty. Contractors use this product as a bulk filler for small rotted out trims on exterior and window sill trims. Simply use water, or in the case a stain to make the powder into a paste and apply as smooth as you can. It gets hard like cement and can be fairly difficult to sand and remove once it dries. This product will take stain well. Always test a small portion before applying it, as you will find in the case of a stained product the repair will be darker then it normally would be if it was just surfaced applied.
  • Anna Anna on Mar 26, 2014
    I would stain the project then get a minwax fill stick that matches the stain
  • Dawn Millhouse Dawn Millhouse on Mar 26, 2014
    I'd glue and clamp then stain allowing a little imperfection to stay.
  • Mitchell Walker Mitchell Walker on Jul 27, 2021

    I have a similar thing now. Almost ruined my beautiful side board. Some great tips here. Thanks guys!

  • FaizH. FaizH. on Jul 28, 2021

    I've recently found an old bedside table in my attic. It's made of hardwood and looks antique and I really love it. Unfortunately, there is a crack on the front of the drawer. I'm thinking to repair the table. The crack is not big, but the wood is old and dry and I doubt it can be glued. I think it could be done with a wood filler. I'm going to use Minwax stainable wood filler I used for my deck. I hope I'll enjoy the result.

    • Emre Mathis Emre Mathis on Aug 01, 2021

      Has someone else used it before for furniture? Does this stuff hold up in the weather? In a buyer's guide it is stated that it's waterproof. But I need a feedback about durability. I'm going to repair my outside wood furniture, need to fill all cracks appeared with years and want the repair last for ten more years.

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Sep 02, 2021

    If you can't find a wood filler the right colour. Use raw natural sawdust add your colour and then add clear glue or mod podge. Use that as wood filler and go from there.