Plywood. Wood Dye v Polyurethane

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Project by Bob Collins posted 08-13-2012 10:30 AM 2926 views 2 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

These are the plywood bowls I posted earlier. Dyed one bowl and coated the other with two coats of Polyurethane just to compare the finishes. What is the verdict from viewers.

-- RIP Bob C, Australia. Your best teacher is your last mistake.

9 comments so far

View Sam Shakouri's profile

Sam Shakouri

1200 posts in 4428 days

#1 posted 08-13-2012 10:57 AM

I did not know the plywood tree grows in Victoria as well. AND I did not know the victorian PW tree products was red.

-- Sam Shakouri / CREATING WONDERS WITH WOOD.....Sydney,Australia....

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

27259 posts in 4446 days

#2 posted 08-13-2012 11:46 AM

G’day, Bob. I’d vote for the natural one! I love to natural color of the wood in turned objects. Just my preference.
what thickness was the plywood to begin with? Like how much did you have to stack up. I have seeen a lot of it turned and now I have to try it!
Thanks for sharing…............Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View Bob Collins's profile

Bob Collins

2847 posts in 5024 days

#3 posted 08-13-2012 12:42 PM

Evening Sam, the plywood forests are really flourishing in Central Victoria, I believe they experimented with injecting coloured dyes into the seedlings to produce various colours. I have been lucky enough to get some of the first red to be produced. Can’t wait for the multi colours to reach maturity. Only in Victoria. haha

-- RIP Bob C, Australia. Your best teacher is your last mistake.

View RetiredCoastie's profile


999 posts in 4524 days

#4 posted 08-13-2012 12:58 PM

I would have thought the plywood trees in Victoria were plaid, nice to see it also comes in solid colors. I like them both. If I had to choose just one it would be the natural one but it would depend on the setting in which it would be displayed!

I just looked at your projects. All I can say is WOW! Beautiful craftsmanship, A true artist!

-- Proud Supporter of Homes For Our Troops

View Darell's profile


448 posts in 4935 days

#5 posted 08-13-2012 02:37 PM

Having turned a few plywood bowls myself, I’ve tried the dyeing process too. I tried to follow Triferns process but the results haven’t turned out quite like I expected. Yet! I’ll probably try again at some point just for fun. I do like your red bowl though. But, I still prefer the natural finish on a plywood bowl because I still prefer the natural look of wood for most projects whether turned or flat work. In my experience I’ve found that with plywood I need to put a sealer on the wood to even out the coloring, and because if you are using more than one color of dye the first coat soaks all the way through the plywood if it’s not sealed. Good work on the bowls.

-- Darell, Norman, Ok.

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30662 posts in 3679 days

#6 posted 08-13-2012 04:32 PM

Awesome job. How big are the bowls? Must be a high grade PW.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Dana1972's profile


86 posts in 3470 days

#7 posted 08-13-2012 07:10 PM

Great looking bowl!!! looking forward to seeing more :)

-- Dana, Tn and Tx artist

View peteg's profile


4438 posts in 4164 days

#8 posted 08-13-2012 09:52 PM

Bob, I’m in the “leave natural” camp, I just feel the colour tends to flatten out the natural look of the material, nice practical shape for everyday use, well done Mate

-- Pete G: If you always do what you always did you'll always get what you always got

View Bob Collins's profile

Bob Collins

2847 posts in 5024 days

#9 posted 08-14-2012 12:29 AM

Thanks for the comments and I am also leaning towards the natural look.
Darell – your right, after five coats of dye and still not a great result, will try a sealer next time but there must be a way to enhance that grain. Will never die wondering.
Jim – it is 15mm thick and I stacked it to an 8” cube and then cut diagonally to get two bowls, I used Dennis Keeling method of cutting out the centre on each layer as shown on his web site. Worth looking at.
Monte – roughly 8” diam x 4” high give of take a bit.

-- RIP Bob C, Australia. Your best teacher is your last mistake.

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