General Finishes Gel stain on stair handrail/posts


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We recently stained our hardwood floors but the stair components don't match.  Currently, they are honey oak.  I've watched videos and read countless blogs.  I'm looking for advice from people well versed in this type of product.  Please give me tips that will help make this a success! 

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Red oak is one of the easiest species to color with stain, IMO. The fibers tend to take the stain well, and troublesome areas of swirling grain, which will lead to blotch, are pretty easy to see. 

Something to watch for is that millwork houses, which buy material in large quantities, don't put a lot of effort into checking for whie oak / red oak mix. White oak will not color quite the same as red.

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If you gotta stain wood, then oak is one of the best woods for that. You may need to get a few colors and blend them to get a good match.

I enjoy the challenge of doing that. Most recently, I repaired some damage to my daughter's prefinished oak floors and you have to know where to look to see it.

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In don’t consider myself an expert, but if it were me, I would use dye stains in place of gel. The reason being that dye stains can be easily mixed together to obtain the shade needed to match existing stains.

With dye, you are able to mix small batches and test on sample pieces or indescribable surfaces, gel stain not so much. Since dye stains are water soluble, you will need to apply a barrier coat before applying an oil based finish coat. Dewaxed shellac works very well for this.

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