Replacing 100+ year old baseboards & door trim w/ pine; how to stain?

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Old 02-12-20, 07:48 AM
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Replacing 100+ year old baseboards & door trim w/ pine; how to stain?

I have two 10'x10' (roughly) rooms that the 8" baseboards were removed and the 6" door trim (in one of them) painted white (typical stupidity and unacceptable in my book).
I was told the original wood was southern yellow pine (which is hard to find thou I found a source that has some but not all the types/sizes I need). The other choice is clear pine.

Whichever I decide, I did a search on staining this and I'm more confused now than before due to different procedures and materials. One from 'finehomebuilding.com' states to use 'wipe on poly' to seal the surface BEFORE and use a 'gel' stain (which I never used before). That doesn't make much sense to me since poly is suppose to be a 'finish' coat. I get pine absorbs stains unevenly since it is a soft wood, but there are 'conditioners' that are suppose to do that.

'wikihow.com' Says to use 'wood conditioner' sand then stain, but doesn't mention what type of conditioner or stain;
https://www.wikihow.com/Stain-Pine


'popularwoodworking.com' has a more detailed article, but a more complicated procedure using water based conditioner, water based wood dye, dewaxed shellac & oil-based glaze, none of which I have ever used thou the water based route seems to make more sense since the 'water' part is one step to 'raise' the grain using a damp sponge that I also have read about elsewhere;
https://www.popularwoodworking.com/t...staining-pine/

I'm not looking for an exact match, perfection or a bullet proof finish that would be used on a table for example. Questions;

Can regular water based 'stain' be used instead of dye?
Can poly be used instead of the shellac & glaze?
 
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Old 02-12-20, 09:08 AM
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No idea where your located since there's no location in your profile but, Southern Yellow Pine by far is one of the most commonly avalible woods in anyplace I've ever lived.
If there is a grade stamp on it, it would be SYP.
If your starting with new wood, first thing I would do is sand all the face sides first to get rid of the mill marks first.
Mill marks are what looks like lines running across the board caused from the planner.
A quick pass with 60 grit paper with a random obital sander is all it takes.
I do this even when it's being painted.
Trying to get close to mating the old trim will be a challenge because the way it was likely done 100 years ago was by mixing the stain on site and topping with shellac not poly, and it will age to an amber color.
All I've ever done was use the conditioner, stain, then oil based poly, no sanding between coats.
The oil based will yellow out over time for a closer match.
Your going to find out real quick why most people end up painting it.
By staining it all your cuts need to be perfect, there is no nail hole filler what will totally hid them.
I'd be using 1X's for the base boards with cap molding at the top for two reasons, it's thicker then pre made base, and the base cap will flex enough when going over crocked walls so you do not need to caulk.

 
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Old 02-14-20, 04:11 AM
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Sorry for the delayed response, but Yahoo Mail marks this site as 'spam'.
WNY state for the location.

As far as SYP being easily available, surely not here, just the opposite! I did find one place to get it bit only 1x8's, not trim pieces which ruled that out.
I wound up choosing 'clear pine'. The surface is almost 'glass' smooth, no 'mill marks' of any kind that I saw, but I haven't examines every inch of the order.

AFA nail marks, if I look close at the original SYP and the oak trim (in the front parts of the 'flats' I can see the finishing nail heads, but barely. The stain will be dark so I'm not concerned about that at all.

The stain itself; water based or solvent? Smell (for me) isn't a issue, but the wife doesn't like it. I'm more concerned about the final result.
 
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Old 02-14-20, 04:21 AM
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I rarely use a wood conditioner on pine trim. No bigger than it is, the light/dark differences between the soft/hard places is rarely an issue. Wood condition will allow the stain color to be more even although it will make the stain used a little lighter in color.

IMO a quick scuff sand with 120 grit is usually sufficient prior to applying the stain. When feasible I like to stain and apply at least one coat of poly prior to installation - it's quicker/easier that way. I always sand between coats of poly! It generally takes 3 coats. The final coat should be applied after installation and after the nail holes have been filled.

Oil base stain is a LOT easier to work with than it's water based counterpart. It can be top coated with either water based [stain must be good and dry first] or oil base poly. I prefer the look of oil poly as it will deepen the colors in the stain, it's also more durable.
 
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Old 02-14-20, 04:29 AM
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Is the selling point of 'water based' only the lack of 'smell'? AKA' environmental/health issues?

AFA sealing & conditioner, I've read that elsewhere, but I don't understand how a final sealer (poly) could be uses as a wood conditioner? Using that, doesn't that restrict the stain absorption?
 
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Old 02-14-20, 04:45 AM
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You can make your own wood conditioner by thinning down varnish or sanding sealer 50% [or more] I've never done so with poly but it should be the same. Wood conditioner works by slightly sealing the wood so the stain won't absorb as much on the softer areas of the wood. Unconditioned soft wood will stain darker than the harder areas of the wood.

I almost exclusively use oil base poly/varnish. I assume water based poly is mainly marketed to diyers although it does dry faster [quicker recoat times] There are a few water based floor finishes that utilize a catalyst that are real durable. While I've used some of them a few times I'm not very knowledgeable about them. I would assume water based has less VOCs.
 
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Old 02-14-20, 07:19 AM
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Sounds as the trade off is less durability with water based which would sound logical. New & improved almost always has a trade off.

What drew me to 'water based' was the step of using a damp sponge after sanding to 'raise' the grain, using a water based conditioner, then a water based stain.
 
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Old 02-14-20, 09:22 AM
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Sounds as the trade off is less durability with water based
Absolutely not!

Water based top coats are now equal in durability to any oil based, but that does not include any of the cheap krap sold at big box stores.

Every furniture and cabinet maker today uses water based top coats due to environmental requirements, just like the car companies. The material has come a long way!

I'll get flack for this but anybody that says differently has simply never give it a try because once you do you'll never go back!
 
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Old 02-14-20, 10:16 AM
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We probably should clarify that there is difference between water based poly and waterborne poly. The waterborne poly is closer to an oil base poly although I've not used enough of it to have an informed opinion.
 
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Old 02-14-20, 10:18 AM
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that does not include any of the cheap krap sold at big box stores.
I have to think Minwax & Varathane would be excluded from that list?

waterborne poly.
Manufactures??
 
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Old 02-14-20, 10:24 AM
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Both of their oil base coatings are ok. The main thing is they are readily available. Minwax's Polycrylic doesn't impress me none, I've never used a waterbased Varathane.
 
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