From the original questioner Comment from contributor A: They also have a clear, which is a bleached shellac. Staining tight-grained woods like Hard Maple is a problem for finishers. If you use a random-orbit sander, follow up by hand-sanding with the grain using the same final grit. The customer handed me a sample of maple with that particular color on it and asked if I could match that color. I am in the process of trying some different samples of finish and stain that I have received and will let everybody know how it turned out. I tried sealing with linseed oil. It soaks up the stain very unevenly. You may need to allow the stain to dry some before wiping. (See photo.) To suggest to someone who may not have a lot of colorants on hand and may not have the needed color mixing experience to nail a suitable toner that will come close to matching the Minwax is not always practical. A board that has a nice, attractive grain pattern can end up with dark, splotchy areas after you apply the stain. Maple is notorious for blotching. Understand that staining--without blotches--is difficult. And yes stainable wood filler leaves blotchy spots. However, being darker along the edges and lighter in the middle? One of the woods that blotches easily is pine. You are able to find a number of different sheens from flat to high gloss. The Bartlett Gel stain and the secondary stain went on just fine. Staining tight-grained woods like Hard Maple is a problem for finishers. There was no blotching or unevenness. Pour the oil into a … A: Maple is not a great wood to stain. Another disadvantage with multiple coats is that it will remove the natural grain of the wood. Can we sand and waterpop, next day apply the cut seal coat, then use the jell stain? Maple is not the best wood to stain because it does tend to be blotchy. You need to see to it that you will be sending the test board with the same grit that you will be using on the actual project. For me, Minwax is a last resort. Copyright 2018 by Cut The Wood. Basically, in easy to understand terms the wood accepts more stain in certain areas. Let the stain dry and apply another coating. It is about impossible to not have a line if you are staining across numerous boards. For a maple hardwood floor we have about a 1000 sq ft to sand and stain. Blotchy Stain/Colorant Blotchy stain or colorant is when there is the appearance of an inconsistent color from one area of a finished floor to another. One of the tests that you can do though is to wipe the board with mineral spirits. I would like to say that using the Minwax stain is not absolute. Understand that staining–without blotches–is difficult. But there’s a simple way you can prevent most stain blotches. The best way to reduce blotchiness is to apply a coat of Minwax® Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner after your final sanding, but before you apply your Minwax® stain. Staining close-grained woods like maple and cherry presents a problem for the wood finisher, because they can absorb regular penetrating stains unevenly and appear blotchy. Wipe in wipe off. Some tree species contain pockets of sap, which cause the wood to absorb stain unevenly. With all the things you can do to lacquers, why even use shellac? Maple is one of the most difficult woods to achieve a dark, uniform stain color on because it is a dense, closed grain wood and often absorbs stain very unevenly. You will find the results much more gratifying. I dont think the old ways look as good as what you can do now with wood. Scrub out the streaks, then reapply the stain liberally. Pine, cherry, maple, birch, and alder are the most likely to blotch. Stains tend to fill pores, cracks, and crevices in wood. That worked ok, but didn't give the smooth, even results I was looking for. Once you are able to wipe off the excess gently, you will realize that the color that you will have will be more uniform. But I can also tell you if it is yellow pine sometimes it grabs stain funny. This won't completely solve the problem, though. Would that work better or would waterpoping hurt us? This will also prevent the end grain from absorbing too much stain. One of the disadvantages that it will have is that it will take a long time before it will dry. This is warned against at the National Maple Flooring Manufacturers web site. Stain controllers can only minimize blotches, not eliminate them. I'm assuming its dewaxed but neither the can nor Zinsser's web site says one way or the other. This was a last resort for me and I had no other choice. I hope I didnt upset anyone who likes doing things the old way, in my business there is no time for old ways. As with other hardwoods such as cherry, maple can be a bit temperamental to finish, particularly when staining. The next thing that you need to do is to brush on a burnt umber or other brownish glazes. Maple is not easy to stain and generally comes out blotchy due to the nature of the wood. Step #1: Sand the floor For both applications the best way to start is by sanding the maple floor flawlessly. This is just another process you might call a stain conditioning. Ill stick popping open a 5 gallon bucket and spraying. Blotchiness is caused by irregular pores, most often found in maple, pine, alder, aspen, poplar and birch, that absorb stain unevenly. This is also a great time to test the effects of different sheens. And if you want to learn how to do it then read on this article and we will show you how. If you find that there are excess coating then you can wipe to off gently. The dye will color the maple evenly, allowing the grain to be the most visible. Often this is simply a physical property of the wood species itself (such as maple, black cherry, and pine), whereby it does not evenly accept stain … Wetting … The most effective way to "stain" maple a dark color is by spraying a fast drying solvent based stain such as Woodsong. You need to know though that you might find it hard to tell which boards will have this effect. This might give you a few blotchy appearances but will also help you show the grain better. It takes too much time, and time equals money. Dont let these die hard shellac users tell you that fresh shellac is just as durable as a pre-cat lacquer, not to mention all the steps you have to do to before you even apply it on your surface. If the surface that you have is very blotchy, you need to make sure that you will remove the stain first by stripping it. After our contractor applied the first stain application though, the floors look very blotchy and non-uniform. Always remember to do it in one direction only. Sometimes it's fine, but in general it's rolling the dice. Overall, you will get a much more consistent color. This will, in turn, make the project longer to finish. Maple Dye. General Finishes Gel Stains or Water Based Stains usually will perform very well because they are more topical than traditional liquid oil stains, and contain more colorants. Whenever you have wood that has grains that are more open then that is also the place where these blotches often come up. If the surface is very blotchy, you’ll have to remove the stain by stripping, sanding, or both, and start over. Maple, like several others species such as walnut, American cherry, pine and Douglas fir, do not take stain as evenly as species such as red oak and white oak.Blotchy color can result from other factors as well, such as inconsistent sanding procedures, water-popping, or stain application. For DIY homeowners the best advice is to avoid staining Maple, Birch, and Cherry. Also, if you were sanding and stain matching along a board edge, you would have better odds of success. My experience has grown, but with allot of choices to make. I do not make a practice of doing this. Repeat the whole process until you are able to find the desired color depth that you want. Woods like cherry, pine and birch can become blotchy and unattractive when stained, unless you use a sealer before staining. I usually mix up my own shellac, but I found the Zinsser to work fine in this application. Once you are able to treat your test boards as a fished project then this will help you get a true representation of the final product that you will get. The store bought shellac will never come close to giving you a good durable finish like conversion or lacquer.