water based stain

Painting options, interior and exterior.

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Brian
Posts: 181
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 10:06 pm
Location: Hawaii

Re: water based stain

Post by Brian » Fri Jan 29, 2016 11:17 am

The wood is Sapele, which is thoroughly impregnated with CPES. There are not really "coats" of CPES. It is put on wet continuously until the surface is shiny, indicating complete absorption. After that (dried or not), putting on more does nothing for the wood. There are three ways of prepping CPES for staining. One is to sand it down to the wood fibers, which are saturated with cured CPES, but still wood fibers. Another is to scuff the gloss off evenly with 100-120 grit. A third, of course, would be to stain the wood prior to CPES, but that can inhibit CPES absorption and can cause blotchiness. That said, others apparently have had success with this approach.

My test pieces are with the CPES surface-scuffed and sanded to the wood on either half of several test pieces. I'm using several oil-based stains, as recommended by Smith's. I'm sure it's true that, given enough time, the stains will dry out completely on their own. I simply did not want to wait a week to see. These pieces are all now completed with 5:1 epoxy fiberglass and polyurethane over the top, and the oldest one is about 5 days old. I used a low setting on the heat gun with all of them about 2 days after the stain was applied, very lightly, just to see. Only the Minwax developed any small dots of stain rising to the surface, which wiped off in one pass. Later, nothing. Now that they are under the fiberglass, I have noticed no difference between any of them (including non-stained CPES) as far as any impact on the surface fiberglass. They all look great, with minimal color differences.

I think I am probably going to go ahead without any stain at all, because the difference between plain CPES and all but the Minwax is not significant. The Minwax is a bit darker, and looks good as well, but I think it will just be too dark for me. But if I did stain, I would not be reluctant to make a light pass over the stained CPES Sapele with a heat gun at a distance the day before (after a week or more), just as a little insurance. To be clear, I am not talking about "drying the stain with a heat gun". That is clearly a bad thing to do, as you say. But I see nothing wrong with a little light heat just to see if anything might still be trapped in the CPES after a long drying period...as long as you don't overdo it!

Moisture is not an issue for me, however I am using a LOT of CPES on all the wood because the boat is going from sea level Hawaii to 6,200' Lake Tahoe, so I want everything as stable as possible before I make that move. It's nasty stuff and I put on my coveralls and respirator every time, but I think CPES is well worth the effort, inside and out. It's very expensive, topping $300 for a 2-gallon kit here. I'll probably have over $1,000 worth of it in this boat!

cusoak
Posts: 932
Joined: Sat Dec 26, 2009 8:49 am
Location: Senecaville Ohio

Re: water based stain

Post by cusoak » Sat Jan 30, 2016 5:58 am

Now that I think about you comment using the heat gun to dry the stain, I have this to say.
When you put the Smiths on you ( if you put enough coats on for it to do it's job) are gluing the fibers together which is what it is supposed to do. Thus making it difficult for the stain to penetrate the wood, and be absorbed so it will dry. By scuffing with 120 you are just making the smiths smooth, not opening the pores up to except the stain.
My opion
Jeff

cusoak
Posts: 932
Joined: Sat Dec 26, 2009 8:49 am
Location: Senecaville Ohio

Re: water based stain

Post by cusoak » Sat Jan 30, 2016 6:04 am

Sounds like you are on the right track.
jeff

Brian
Posts: 181
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 10:06 pm
Location: Hawaii

Re: water based stain

Post by Brian » Sat Jan 30, 2016 11:25 am

Yes, it's interesting. Smith's says either way works, but if you want to use a transparent stain, you need to get down to the fibers, even though they have been treated with CPES. If you want to stain CPES, you use a filler stain (like the Interlux Chris Craft). My test pieces all used filler stains on 120-scuffed CPES, which handled the stain pretty much like wood. But at the end of the day, it didn't provide enough of a difference to convince me to stain, so I'm not.

I suspect the whole staining thing depends upon your wood. If it's too light, inconsistent, or you just really want it a different tone, then stain. My wood looks great, and stain didn't make it look "greater".

cusoak
Posts: 932
Joined: Sat Dec 26, 2009 8:49 am
Location: Senecaville Ohio

Re: water based stain

Post by cusoak » Sun Jan 31, 2016 6:28 am

Can you post pictures of you boat or your test samples.
Jeff

Brian
Posts: 181
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 10:06 pm
Location: Hawaii

Re: water based stain

Post by Brian » Sun Jan 31, 2016 10:55 am

I've never been able to figure out how to do that, but in any case, I don't think the pics would reflect the actual finish/color. Not to mention that everyone's wood/humidity/temp/etc is a bit different, which is why you need to test your own wood.

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