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im thinking of building a side tale for by my couch. all it needs to realy hold is a lamp. the main wood that i can get at the lowes is pine. affter i finsh it i will want to stain it what do i need to do afffter i sand it down. how do i get the wood ready to stain affter that. and what is a good type of stain to go with?

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i never used sander sealer. how hard is it to use? i mean do u need to sand inbetween coats?
Once you sand the pine down to where you want it you are all set to stain (I recommend going to at least a 220 grit finish). An easy way to go is with a Minwax stain / poly blend it will stain the wood and protect it at the same time. Read the directions on the can but basically you put on a coat, let it dry, rub the whole thing down with 000 steel wool , clean it off good to get the steel wool dust off of it, and put on a second coat. Continue with coats like this until you are satisfied (I put 3 coats on my face frame project).
I always use the pre-stain conditioner on pine. Here are some cabinets I made with pine. I sanded, applied pre-stain conditioner, then stained. I actually used two stains, because the first was too red for my taste. I later applied a dark walnut stain over the red. To finish it off, I applies four or five coats of Spar varnish. This is going to be used in a camping trailer and will be semi-exposed to the outdoors. I am happy with the results.

thank you all for the great info now its time to get to work.
Hey just another little tid bit- you also might want to look at Gel stains as they sit more on the surface of the wood. They are much for forgiving than standard oil stains. The Gel stains have given me Great results. Not to completely confuse you but another great finish that i love is made by Bri Wax. It stains and protects the wood as well. I don't recommend this for anything that is going to take a crazy beating but it is very simple to apply like rubbing shoe polish on and it has a very soft finish. You can re-apply as needed.
Good Luck with your project!
I'm new, so hi. I am building a set of bookshelves that will be attached to3/4 plywood wall.

I Have stained all the pieces before installation. I have many texture differences in the various pine pieces. I used a pre stain conditioner before staining. Everything came out just right. I am using Pittsburgh Paints products. Min-wax would not blend a custom stain for me.

I will be fastening the 6/4x12 uprights to the plywood back wall with pocket screws. The shelf supports are rabbited into the uprights. Final install is day after tomorrow.

Jim Harris
I would not only use the conditioners, but I would also go with a RIT brown dye first as a base and then apply my stain to get a more uniform look.

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