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Hello mighty wood workers

I have been wood working for about three months now. I built a pulpit out of oak and I started fine till I got to the finish part. the procedure I took was simple but I wonder what you fellow wood workers recomend.

Preparation:
1. sanding: I started with 150 ended with 220.
2. Wood fill: I used wood fill for areas that needed a touchup/fill.
3. sanding: 220-sanded one last time
4. damp cloth: I cleaned the surfaces.
(What is wood conditioner for????)
5.stain: I used a brush and seemed heavy but I thougth it looked just right.Took 3-4 days to dry.

6: protec: After a few days of drying I put on this semi-gloss polyurethane.

Minwax was the products I used.

The pulpit came out great. I wonder if I missed a step or if there is a better way. Still learning!!!!! This is not like framing. pictures coming soon!!

Jesse
 

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Jesse, pre stain wood conditioner is used to partially seal soft or porus woods such as pine so your stain does not come out blotchy, darker in spots. Oak takes stain very well and should not need it. Stain is normally applied, allowed to dry a short time and then wiped off. Additional coats are applied if the shade is not dark enough. Stain needs to dry completely before applying a top coat, and it sounds like you got it right. Normally after the first coat of poly had dried it is lightly scuffed with 0000 steel wool, cleaned and recoated. This process is often repeated for a 3rd coat. This helps get an extremely smooth finish.
 

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Poplar is the least expensive hardwood where I live. It is best used in projects where it will be painted or hidden from view. I also use poplar for building jigs and fences. Keep in mind that if you finish a project using a stain and a glaze to achieve an aged, darker look that the color of the poplar wont matter. It will be hidden by the pigments and only the grain should be visible.
 
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