Matching Wood Stains on Different Woods

Old 05-24-08, 06:15 PM
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Matching Wood Stains on Different Woods

I am trying to match stains on new pine windows with new fir doors and new fir base and casing. We have an 80 year old Spanish classic with maple floors. We would like to use a medium dark finish. The sampling we have done on the different woods is showing very different shades.

Can anyone suggest techniques and/or products that will allow us to close the gap?

Thank you!
Old 05-24-08, 06:30 PM
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If you had a piece of the pine (white or yellow?) and took it to the paint store along with a piece of finished fir, they can match the stain. It will not be exact because different woods take stain differently.
Old 05-25-08, 04:19 AM
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More than likely you will need 2 different stains - 1 for the windows and another for the woodwork.
Old 05-25-08, 05:12 AM
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We (the stores I work with) have developed a reputation for stain matching. But we charge $20 to do each match plus the price of the stain and maybe colorant. the reason you may find these charges is the amount of effort and time involved in a stain match. To do it right requires the stain to be applied, dried, then finish coated to check the color.

Some things to keep in mind:
1) Bring a sample of the fir, preferably from the project and prepped as you will be doing. For example, you need to sand the wood prior to staining, so sand your sample. By defualt, we use a 150grit random orbital if not informed otherwise.

2) Let the people know how you plan on applying the stain, or do it in the manner they do. If you are going to put it on with a brush, the stain will be darker then if you did it with a rag. if you plan on using a brush but don't tell the store, they may use a rag and your stain will be way too dark.

3) let the store know what kind of topcoat you will be using, as this will affect the color.

4) after you get your stain, do a sample to check. I could give you a list of about a dozen items, any one of which will drastically change your end result. so do a sample.

all this being said, you may be able to get by with one stain if you can accept some variation from the pine to the fir. Because pine and fir stain differently you may see a difference even with two different stains.

A final thought, bring in a sample of the color you want. I can attest to how frustrating it can be to do sample after sample with no idea where we are going. I have stopped doing stain samples of custom stain without a sample of the end product. this could be a picture or a piece of wood.

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