Disaster in the making. Stain ran during PU coat, and is now uneven.


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Old 07-09-15, 08:11 AM
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Disaster in the making. Stain ran during PU coat, and is now uneven.

I've been refinishing a large veneer table (comfortably sits 6 people) completely by hand. I sanded that baby down to a smooth finish over several days, then stained it. I loved the color...all was glorious.

Then I needed to add some poly coats to finish it off. I bought some mineral spirits to thin the coats to make it nice and smooth. Regrettably, it was the "green" mineral spirits is water based (I didn't know any betteR) "OK, scratch thinning it. Let's just got for it with normal poly." I said. Aaaand, the color ran all over, and the PU was thick and gooey, and needed some sanding.

Well, for the most part, it turned out okay, but the edges of the table look awful. The PU pulled out the stain from the table, and when I sanded the gooped up edges, it sanded the stain right out (with 400 grit?! I barely touched the dang thing!). Now my table has a gloriously obvious 1/4" to 1/2" light ring around it, but the rest looks okay. I hoped that another coat of poly would even it a touch, but no luck. I'm pissed.

So here I am. 2 coats of poly on, and an obnoxious ring around the table. I don't really want to re-sand the whole thing, as a) I'm 25 hours into the project already, b) its veneer....you can only sand it down so many times, and c) my budget was 50 bucks, and buying more sandpaper/real mineral spirits (not the "eco friendly" crap) will easily put me over that.

Is there anything to be done? Thanks in advance for any advice.
 

Last edited by brettjm; 07-09-15 at 08:46 AM. Reason: clarification
  #2  
Old 07-09-15, 08:19 AM
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Water based poly over oil based stain? Am I reading the details correctly?

Did you wipe off the excess stain after a few minutes?

How long did the stain sit before applying the poly?
 
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Old 07-09-15, 08:26 AM
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hmm. Oil based poly. The water based mineral spirits didn't get used...I was just irritated that they existed.

I did wipe excess stain off....was pretty thorough with it.

Stain sat about 3 hours before poly coat. The can said the stain should be dry and ready for poly in an hour. I should have let it sit a couple days, if I had to do it again. Never trust the can, I guess.
 
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Old 07-09-15, 10:08 AM
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It sure sounds like the stain coat wasn't dry enough or the 1st coat of poly was over brushed softening up and lifting some of the stain. It should have been noticeable while you were applying the poly or at least when sanding to get ready for the 2nd coat.

A pic or two would help us better understand the situation and what would be the best plan of attack.
http://www.doityourself.com/forum/el...your-post.html
 
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Old 07-09-15, 10:34 AM
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It definitely ran when I put the PU on, but I couldn't tell how bad it was until after sanding, because the stain was mixed into the PU, hiding the fact that it pulled it out of the wood. I didn't want to overbrush it, and it was starting to get tacky, so I just figured I'd sand it later. Little did I know the stain had soaked out of the wood and into the PU so badly, leaving me with this when I sanded.

Here's some pictures.

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  #6  
Old 07-09-15, 10:37 AM
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I had thought that maybe I sanded too far down after the PU coat...but the unstained areas don't take up more stain, meaning they've still got PU on them.
 
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Old 07-09-15, 11:24 AM
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The easiest fix would be to tint some poly [or buy Minwax PolyShades] and apply it on the top. It will make the finish darker but should hide the discrepancies. It's always a good idea to top coat tinted poly with a clear coat of poly to protect the tint from wear.
 
 

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