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  1. Thanks, and I do get where you're coming from. I do like natural walnut, and have a nice modern oiled walnut dining table, bed, and dresser. With the stairs and doors though, I was wanting to contrast that with a dark walnut look. Because of my custom stair shape though, it makes finding anything pre manufactured impossible. I swear, if I just had a straight or L-shaped stair case I would have been done ages ago! Besides, in the end I would like to be able to coordinate everything to match and I'm finding that going with unfinished doors and stairs is the only way to achieve that. I think you're right, and I just need to try the Van Dyke Brown dye. I looked over everything in Woodcraft today with a fine tooth comb, and VDB seemed to be the color I want (except not in stock). General Finishes Java gel stain also seemed interesting, along with their Spiced Walnut oil stain. The Old Masters stain I'm currently using, and the Varathane floor poly are both oil based.
  2. So first off, hello! I just purchased my first house, and I'm finally able to do get into woodworking. My first wood project is remodeling the formerly carpeted stairs, and transforming them into dark walnut treads and white risers. I purchased some treads in walnut, and cut them all to fit the wildly shaped rounding staircase I have. The problem comes from weeks of frustration in getting a nice even application and consistent look between each step, along with the right color and darkness. Now I know this will make me the least favorite newbie ever, but I'm applying a dye to even all the color and tone out, and a stain to darken it. I'm sorry, and hopefully someone can forgive me, but I envision a nice dark brown and even look across the stairs and eventually on the doors and in the kitchen. I looked at using other woods, but just couldn't find any examples that looked as great as a true dark walnut. With that out of the way, I've finally got a process down that gives me even and consistent looking stairs. The issue is with the reddish tone that the Behlen's "American Walnut" dye gives to the wood, especially in contrast to the grey wood floors. My current process is two light coats of 40% dye/ 60% denatured alcohol sprayed with an hvlp. Then wipe on and wipe off with Old Masters Dark Walnut Gel stain. Then I apply two coats of Varathane clear satin floor finish. The resulting look is quite beautiful, except for the reddish tone. I'm wondering if Van Dyke Brown would be a better color, or if I should completely switch brands or methods? I'm worried about the color changing, and also having to deal with raised grain. I'm also curious about any stains that might even the wood out without a dye? I know the most popular method is oil, but after looking at photos I'm unsure if I would be able to get it dark enough even with black walnut danish oil. Also, with the tinted danish oil, I'm not sure if it would even out the different color strips of walnut or if it would change color with age? Any help and advice is greatly appreciated! I've attached pictures of the untreated walnut treads, two finished walnut treads, and some photos of the style and color similar to what I'm wanting to achieve.