I really dislike staining pine. I also need to get rid of a blue mold stain

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Forum topic by Airspeed posted 03-23-2013 04:08 PM 7298 views 1 time favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Airspeed's profile


452 posts in 2383 days

03-23-2013 04:08 PM

Topic tags/keywords: staining pine

I have a fairly endless supply of free 1X12X48” pine and will be using a lot of it in the near future. I hate trying to get a descent finish on it. Right now I’m building a rocking chair and am ready to finish it but hate the look of pine stained, I can never get an even finish, it always looks blotchy and unless I select the pieces very carefully they never match. I’ve read up on pre treatments and tried several methods with little success. I’m considering using some type of wash color instead. Do any of you have examples of washed finishes? I’m talking about transparent colors like blue, red, green, etc. One of the pieces I used has a blue mold stain, unfortunately it’s right in the middle of the hollow seat. I’m thinking of trying to bleach it out but I don’t have any scraps with blue mold to test the bleach on. Will bleach get rid of the blue mold stain? Thanks!


14 replies so far

View Elizabeth's profile


817 posts in 3624 days

#1 posted 03-23-2013 04:16 PM

If you use a blue wash on the piece maybe the blue mold won’t be visible? Just a thought; I haven’t worked with dyes much. Personally I like the blue mark.

View redSLED's profile


790 posts in 2373 days

#2 posted 03-23-2013 06:03 PM

Ever tried 1 or 2 coats of 1 lb.-cut clear shellac and super-light sanding before staining, instead of off-the-shelf wood conditioner, to reduce blotchiness and grain lines contrast? For pine, spruce and fir, the conditioning/sealer coat is an always must-do for good-looking finishing. Mold in wood is a separate issue I haven’t learned enough about.

-- Perfection is the difference between too much and not enough.

View sprucegum's profile


324 posts in 2478 days

#3 posted 03-23-2013 06:37 PM

Blue mold stain as far as I know is impossible to remove. sometimes if it is not too deep it can be sanded or plained away but sometimes it goes all the way thru. It is often caused by leaving the logs exposed to the elements in hot weather. Most pine mills in the North East try to produce the majority of their lumber between Sept. and May.
It can also be caused by miss handling the lumber after it is sawed.
Some folks think it looks good with a natural finish, I’m not in love with it but I like it better than dark minwax.

-- A tube of calk and a gallon of paint will make a carpenter what he ain't

View redSLED's profile


790 posts in 2373 days

#4 posted 03-23-2013 06:41 PM

I would love to have your fairly endless supply of 1×12x48 pine. [quietly sobbing]

-- Perfection is the difference between too much and not enough.

View Airspeed's profile


452 posts in 2383 days

#5 posted 03-23-2013 07:03 PM

Thanks all! I just got lucky, I just got done talking with my son in law (my supply of free 1X12”s) and he told me my daughter actually likes un stained pine! Problem solved! I’m going to give it a few coats of urethane and be done! I tried some diluted bleach on the blue mold stain and it didn’t do much, maybe a slight reduction in blue. It’s in an unfortunate area of the seat, I didn’t see any mold in it until I carved out the seat so I guess it stays.
Redsled, I would share my endless supply if you were close! If I dont take these boards they get burned in a Co gen plant! It’s amazing how much they burn! I am going for another unit soon! Thanks again everyone!


View OggieOglethorpe's profile


1276 posts in 2590 days

#6 posted 03-23-2013 08:26 PM

On pine, I’m a big fan of either orange or amber shellac, or paint.

The amber tones of the shellac provide a classic pine look that seems to be ageless. Real milk paints can look good too, especially multiple different color coats, worn in spots to let the layers show. Wax can be used to adjust the sheen of milk paint.

View kizerpea's profile


775 posts in 2848 days

#7 posted 03-24-2013 11:10 AM

Yep..amber shellac will work fine…give it that yellowish color wid a shine…cut it wid denatured alc…25% apply with a foam brush..dries fast to…


View stnich's profile


124 posts in 3405 days

#8 posted 03-24-2013 11:36 AM

You might experiment with a two part wood bleach. I have used it before but never on pine. It tends to remove almost all of the color out of wood and then you stain with what ever color you want. The product I have used in the past is Kleen Strip. Make sure you condition the wood before you stain it otherwise it will likely blotch. Also you have to neutralize the wood after the bleaching. Just follow the directions on the package. There is also Oxalic Acid which is not as strong as wood bleach.

View Airspeed's profile


452 posts in 2383 days

#9 posted 03-25-2013 01:09 AM

I have some fine tuning and sanding to do on the rocker I’m building and want to use some wood hardener on the seat and bottom of the rockers. I’ve never used wood hardener before so I have no idea what if any color change may occur. I used pine on this project and want to harden up these areas. Does wood hardener such as what minwax sells do any good? I’m not staining the rocker, I’m using lacquer only, will the wood hardener change the color the same as lacquer? I’ll be spraying lacquer over the hardener so I want to make sure it’s not going to be noticeable.


View waho6o9's profile


8749 posts in 3057 days

#10 posted 03-25-2013 01:18 AM

Blotch control from fellow LJer, Charles Neils.

View Bill Swartzwelder's profile

Bill Swartzwelder

176 posts in 2393 days

#11 posted 03-25-2013 01:19 AM

Charles Neil has an episode online, that deals with finishing and staining pine without blotching on you tube.

-- What if the Hokey Pokey really is what its all about?

View Airspeed's profile


452 posts in 2383 days

#12 posted 03-25-2013 01:25 AM

I got out of staining this chair as my daughter wants natural pine now so conditioner isn’t needed now, I’m more interested in hardening up the pine in the seat and bottom of the rockers now. I’m wondering if wood hardener is worth the effort and if it will show a noticeable difference in color after I spray the lacquer? Thanks!


View RogerInColorado's profile


321 posts in 2435 days

#13 posted 03-25-2013 02:05 AM

The blue you see is likely from the pine beetle. Between the time the pine beetle lays its eggs and the larvae emerge, the tree “catches the flue”. That kills the tree. The blue is evidence of what killed the tree. The pine beetle has devastated pine forests in the Rocky Mountains and elsewhere. They attack trees stressed by drought and therefore contribute to huge fuel supplies for the major fires that have been raging in these areas for the last several decades. Beetle Kill Pine has become quite popular for those seeking the rustic look. Kudos to your daughter for appreciating the blue as part of the natural order of things.

View Woodknack's profile


12890 posts in 2860 days

#14 posted 03-25-2013 06:32 AM

Are you thinking of using a wood hardener on the rockers to help durability? I don’t know if it will be worth it but it’s an interesting experiment.

-- Rick M,

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