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Staining Pine and Oak together

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Forum topic by bp2878 posted 01-06-2022 04:50 PM 485 views 0 times favorited 21 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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bp2878

89 posts in 1234 days


01-06-2022 04:50 PM

Making a chest of drawers for my son, will end up being an entire bedroom suite but the chest is first. When I started the project, I intended to paint it so I went with dimensional pine from big box store on some parts of it (legs and stretchers). The sides and drawer fronts are oak plywood.

My wife was appalled at the idea of painting it and want’s it stained now that it is 60% complete. Is there any way to make this not look ridiculous having two different wood types together or is painting it my only option?

Thanks in advance for any advice.


21 replies so far

View Rich's profile

Rich

8114 posts in 2047 days


#1 posted 01-06-2022 05:33 PM

Photos would help. You’ll need to do test boards, and I don’t have high hopes you’ll find a satisfactory solution.

Without seeing it, I can only speculate, but one issue you’re going to have is the difference in grain. Something to try on your test boards is doing a couple of wash coats with 1/2 lb cut shellac. Then do a grain fill on the oak, and finally test the stain. You might even need to go with a 1 lb cut on the shellac. The idea is to even out the stain on the two. A dark stain will hide any differences better than a light one.

You could always start over. Paint that one and put it in a utility room, or in your shop.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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LesB

3470 posts in 4901 days


#2 posted 01-06-2022 06:16 PM

That is a problem because pine and oak absorb stain differently.
Rich headed you in the right direction about using a conditioner such as clear un-waxed shellac that will control the way the pine in particular takes the stain. Zinsers makes a shellac called Seal Coat that is a 2# cut. His caution about testing is the mantra of wood finishing.

There is not much you can do about the difference in appearance between oak and pine even if you fill the oak pores.

The next choice is to emphasize the difference by applying different color stains or dyes to two woods. I found that Behlen’s dye looked great on oak. I used it on a large board game I made (Crokinole)) where the skirt was oak and the center was birch. Leaving the birch natural I stained the oak a burgundy red. The contrast looked good. To see a Crokinole board search it on the internet.

Good luck

-- Les B, Oregon

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Rich

8114 posts in 2047 days


#3 posted 01-06-2022 06:38 PM

un-waxed shellac

- LesB

Thanks. I forgot to mention that.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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bp2878

89 posts in 1234 days


#4 posted 01-06-2022 07:05 PM

Yeah, I was afraid of that. I’ll try some test pieces tonight but I see some GF Milk paint in this things future. Thinks for your input!

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bondogaposis

6183 posts in 3809 days


#5 posted 01-06-2022 07:26 PM

What were you thinking? Pine, oak?

-- Bondo Gaposis

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bp2878

89 posts in 1234 days


#6 posted 01-06-2022 07:44 PM



What were you thinking? Pine, oak?

- bondogaposis

I was thinking paint, but my wife was thinking otherwise. Guess I should have asked first according to her.

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pottz

25783 posts in 2442 days


#7 posted 01-06-2022 08:11 PM



What were you thinking? Pine, oak?

- bondogaposis


+1 if she is appalled at painting she’s really gonna be appalled at how it will look stained.

-- working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

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HokieKen

21695 posts in 2596 days


#8 posted 01-06-2022 08:16 PM

Good advice above. Though truth be told, I doubt you’ll ever be really happy with the look of the two woods stained. If it were me and I were planning to eventually build a full matching BR set, I’d call it a prototype, stick it in the shop or basement, and start over building one out of whatever wood you want to make the set out of. Just something to ponder.

If you do decide to go that route, Rich is especially fond of flatsawn red Oak. I’m sure he’d be happy to offer advice on a good finish for that.

-- I collect hobbies. There is no sense in limiting yourself (Don W) - - - - - - - - Kenny in SW VA

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bp2878

89 posts in 1234 days


#9 posted 01-06-2022 09:06 PM



Good advice above. Though truth be told, I doubt you ll ever be really happy with the look of the two woods stained. If it were me and I were planning to eventually build a full matching BR set, I d call it a prototype, stick it in the shop or basement, and start over building one out of whatever wood you want to make the set out of. Just something to ponder.

If you do decide to go that route, Rich is especially fond of flatsawn red Oak. I m sure he d be happy to offer advice on a good finish for that.

- HokieKen

I think this one will end up as a prototype, will likely end up on marketplace. I honestly don’t know what I was thinking other than if I don’t build something quick, she is going to buy some garbage from the furniture store that is essentially made out of cardboard with a sticker on it. I’ve never built anything like a dresser before. I’m fairly new to this woodworking thing so if nothing else, everything I build I at least learn something from.just a few tables, a vanity for my little girl and a cutting board or two.

If nothing else, this one will prove the concept of design and I won’t loose too much money on it. I have three kids so I do plan to build 3 of these dressers.

View SMP's profile

SMP

5308 posts in 1363 days


#10 posted 01-06-2022 09:10 PM

Personally, with those two woods, i would prefer to paint one and leave the other unstained.

Otherwise, stain one but leave the other unstained.

View JCamp's profile (online now)

JCamp

1740 posts in 2008 days


#11 posted 01-06-2022 09:20 PM

Even if the stain matches perfectly I think you will still see that the grain is different between the two woods. Make sure you finish it with something that can be painted later

-- Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with all thy might

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Lazyman

9591 posts in 2845 days


#12 posted 01-06-2022 09:36 PM

Without pictures and other design information this may be a long shot but depending upon what you’ve already built out of pine, applying an oak veneer would remove the pine from the equation to get a uniform look across all the pieces. If only a few pieces could not be veneered, perhaps those pieces could be replaced with new ones from oak.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

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bp2878

89 posts in 1234 days


#13 posted 01-06-2022 10:30 PM

This is the “gem” so far. Legs, side trim, and stretchers are pine. While the oak veneer is good idea, wouldn’t really work on this piece without a ton of work. It’s all glued too so disassembly and replacement isn’t practical either. Not allot of money in it and only a day of build time so not much wasted. I’ll probably put a smoke grey milk paint and try to sweeten it up with some glaze effects. Not really my cup of tea but I’ve been wanting to try it out. People go crazy for that stuff nowadays.

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Rich

8114 posts in 2047 days


#14 posted 01-07-2022 04:56 AM


If you do decide to go that route, Rich is especially fond of flatsawn red Oak. I m sure he d be happy to offer advice on a good finish for that.

- HokieKen

Kenny can be a troll. I like him though. But he’s got me dead to rights on this one. As mommy dearest said, No Red Oak!

But hey, that’s just me. bp2878 should make his wife happy. Nothing is more important than that.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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Rich

8114 posts in 2047 days


#15 posted 01-07-2022 05:00 AM


This is the “gem” so far.

For “fairly new to woodworking” that looks really good.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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