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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
On my birch project the stain that provides the right color match does the job in one coat of stain if I sand to only 180 grit. Normally I sand all my projects to 220 grit before staining.

My question is whether I can still get a very smooth finish with 6 wipe on top coats each of which will be sanded to 220 grit between top coats.

Thanks.

Gary
 

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180 is plenty, and on some woods the 220 may actually burnish the wood making the staining work not so well. But to put your mind at ease, take a piece of scrap and try it out. what you will find is the finish is providing the smoothness, and it will feel just as smooth with the 180.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
180 is plenty, and on some woods the 220 may actually burnish the wood making the staining work not so well. But to put your mind at ease, take a piece of scrap and try it out. what you will find is the finish is providing the smoothness, and it will feel just as smooth with the 180.
Fred thank you for the feedback. I will in fact do exactly that test on the mirror support piece behind the dresser.

Hopefully you will not mind if I capitalize on your response and ask you about a response you submitted on 07-05-13 regarding "Wiping Polyurethane Questions" I sent in the question below on 07-29-13 but I suspect you never saw it. Any feedback would be most welcome.

Gary

Question from 07-29-13
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Originally Posted by Fred Hargis

That certainly doesn't seem like enough coats to me as well. I normally consider 3 coats of wiping varnish equal to about 1 coat brushed on. I typically apply it in sets of 3, let it dry overnight, then 3 more and so on. With wiping varnish, scuffing between coats of a set isn't really needed. But between sets (if it's a urethane product) is a good thing.

Fred, it would be very helpful to me if you could elaborate on your comments about applying wiping varnish in sets of 3.

I use home-made wipe on poly (MinWax Poly diluted 50% with mineral spirits) all the time. But I sand and rub down with denatured alcohol between each coat. Since I put a minimum of 6 coats on a piece this takes me quite a long time. The MinWax web site would suggest that what I am doing is required for each coat.

If I could eliminate some steps this would be terrific. Do you do a set of 3 coats in one day? Drying would be an issue in my mind.

Any feedback would be appreciated. Thanks.

Gary
 

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It is a common technique among experienced finishers to use various sand paper grits to adjust the color intensity of a pigment stain. Pigment stains need nooks and crannies for the pigment rest in. The courser the grit, the darker the stain will appear. Hard woods like birch, maple and beech absorb stains minimally. Sanding these woods to 150 to 180 grit is quite common.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
It is a common technique among experienced finishers to use various sand paper grits to adjust the color intensity of a pigment stain. Pigment stains need nooks and crannies for the pigment rest in. The courser the grit, the darker the stain will appear. Hard woods like birch, maple and beech absorb stains minimally. Sanding these woods to 150 to 180 grit is quite common.
Thank you Howard. This helps me to understand better exactly what is happening when I refinish an antique. Gaining experience with this forum's help is terrific.

Gary
 
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