Suppressing Mahogany Reddish Color - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 Old 10-19-2018, 07:14 PM Thread Starter
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Suppressing Mahogany Reddish Color

I am refinishing an antique entrance table with a mahogany veneered top. The legs and under structure are maple or birch. The pictures show the table before any refinishing has been done and the table top after stripping has been done.

The customer wants the piece finished in an espresso color (with a semi gloss top coat).

The under structure will be fine to color.

It is suppressing the reddish color from the mahogany that is a challenge for me.

What I have to work with is collection of MinWax oil stains, Saman water-based stains, TransTtint dyes and some forest green aniline dye powder.

I am looking for some direction on how to use the products that I have to achieve the espresso color with no reddish hue showing through.

IMPORTANT NOTE: I asked a similar question to this on Sept. 12, 2016 titled “Need to seal color in before top coating.” With that project I was too far along to properly deal with the reddish issue. This time I am requesting some guidance earlier in my refinishing process.

Thank you. … Gary
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post #2 of 11 Old 10-19-2018, 07:39 PM
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Use the green dye first on just the mahogany and then stain all of it with the same stain. You may have to use an additional brown dye on the maple to make it all match but doable. Just go easy with the dye. It's better to do multiple coats or adjust the hue than to get too much on. Dyes are harder to get off than stain. Usually a mixture that looks like lime coolaid is about right but I'm not familiar with that brand and I also spray it which makes a difference. Wiping it by hand the wood will absorb more.

The color green is opposite red so if you ever have something that is too green add red to make brown or if too red add green. You might pick up a color wheel at an artist supply store. The colors on the wheel are opposite each other so it will give you a clue which color cancels the other.
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post #3 of 11 Old 10-20-2018, 12:23 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
Use the green dye first on just the mahogany and then stain all of it with the same stain. You may have to use an additional brown dye on the maple to make it all match but doable. Just go easy with the dye. It's better to do multiple coats or adjust the hue than to get too much on. Dyes are harder to get off than stain. Usually a mixture that looks like lime coolaid is about right but I'm not familiar with that brand and I also spray it which makes a difference. Wiping it by hand the wood will absorb more.

The color green is opposite red so if you ever have something that is too green add red to make brown or if too red add green. You might pick up a color wheel at an artist supply store. The colors on the wheel are opposite each other so it will give you a clue which color cancels the other.
Thanks, Steve. I have a color wheel so some testing will be in order this weekend.

I assume that you are suggesting that wood dye is the best approach here. I am not sure what ratio of brown and black wood dye to use to get an espresso color.

Gary
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post #4 of 11 Old 10-20-2018, 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by GAF View Post
Thanks, Steve. I have a color wheel so some testing will be in order this weekend.

I assume that you are suggesting that wood dye is the best approach here. I am not sure what ratio of brown and black wood dye to use to get an espresso color.

Gary
Unless you mix that color all the time nobody knows the ratio. You just take your best guess and try it on some scrap wood and see what happens. Use a brown such as raw umber which has the absence of red to mix with.
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post #5 of 11 Old 10-20-2018, 05:39 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
Unless you mix that color all the time nobody knows the ratio. You just take your best guess and try it on some scrap wood and see what happens. Use a brown such as raw umber which has the absence of red to mix with.
Steve, I will be doing my testing tomorrow and will follow your suggestion.

I have TransTint Black, Dark Walnut, Coffee Brown and Dark Vintage Maple. I will do some searching and try to find out which of the browns have little or no red content.

Thanks, Gary.
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post #6 of 11 Old 10-20-2018, 08:05 PM
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According to their color chart dark walnut would put you back to where you were. The coffee brown is still too red and the vintage maple is too yellow. I think you need black and dark mission brown.
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post #7 of 11 Old 10-20-2018, 09:38 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
According to their color chart dark walnut would put you back to where you were. The coffee brown is still too red and the vintage maple is too yellow. I think you need black and dark mission brown.
Okay, got it.

Gary
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post #8 of 11 Old 11-02-2018, 03:26 PM
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It might be worth trying some household bleach. I used to age pine using this method. Have a go on a test piece and see how it goes.. You might just get lucky and get the color you want..
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post #9 of 11 Old 11-03-2018, 01:12 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mrchrees View Post
It might be worth trying some household bleach. I used to age pine using this method. Have a go on a test piece and see how it goes.. You might just get lucky and get the color you want..
Thanks for the suggestion. I will give this a try on a future project since this one is now under control.

Gary
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post #10 of 11 Old 11-03-2018, 01:17 AM
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Thanks for the suggestion. I will give this a try on a future project since this one is now under control.

Gary
It would help but don't try it on a veneered piece. When you start trying to cut the natural color of a wood you have to soak it in bleach a lot longer and that would be long enough to lift veneer.
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post #11 of 11 Old 11-04-2018, 05:42 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
It would help but don't try it on a veneered piece. When you start trying to cut the natural color of a wood you have to soak it in bleach a lot longer and that would be long enough to lift veneer.
Thanks for the heads up, Steve.
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