Is there a semi-transparent paint to go over stained and sealed wood?

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  #1  
Old 09-30-12, 08:18 PM
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Is there a semi-transparent paint to go over stained and sealed wood?

On my husband's retirement wage, instead of buying everything new, I've been renovating some of our old tired furniture. I decided to strip our old kitchen cabinet doors, stain and apply polyurethane. I stripped them and sanded them down to the bare wood. I used a walnut stain (Minwax). The cabinets were made of some kind of plywood. The finish they had been done in before had been some kind of semi-opaque maple color.

Laying them side by side, after stripping, staining and sealing them with polyurethane, I realized the woodgrains didn't even match.
Some of the grain patterns were wide and some narrow. They were different wood densities so some took the stain darker than others. The cupboard doors with the wider woodgrain took stain beautifully and the other ones looked like horrible zebra stripes. The wood wouldn't absorb the stain very well, but the wood GRAIN grabbed the dark color.

Right now my cupboard doors like something from a hillybilly mansion. Is there a semi-transparent latex paint that would cover that, but allow the woodgrain to show through? We're running out of summer here, so I can't start over and try to strip and sand all over again, knowing the oil base stain won't dry properly. I can't afford new door faces and it would be great if there was a semi-transparent walnut color latex paint that would allow uniformity of color, but also allow the woodgrain to show through. I had already sealed them with polyurethane..so I would need to be able to paint over that.
(I think such a thing doesn't exist in this reality and I'm entertaining a wishful fantasy). Thanks..it has been a l-o-n-g summer of trying to breathe life back into our old furniture and this really bites..
Thank you for any help.........
 
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  #2  
Old 10-01-12, 01:47 AM
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In regard to my previous post..I'm wondering if OS wax in walnut color could be applied to a finished (but lightly sanded) surface to darken and add more uniformity of color to the peices that turned out too light (with the zebra striped woodgrain). I've never used it before, but remembered somebody talking about it once...
 
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Old 10-01-12, 04:13 AM
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Welcome to the forums Shelly!

Did you use an oil base poly, or waterbased? Sometimes you can use a tinted poly like MInwax"s PolyShades to fix the 'color' issue. A pic or two might help us better understand the problem

http://www.doityourself.com/forum/el...-pictures.html

I'm not familiar with OS wax
 
  #4  
Old 10-01-12, 11:29 AM
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Thank you so much for your reply. I remembered it was my son who mentioned OS wax.
My son used to work for a cabinet shop and used OSMO wax to finish the wood. I asked him about it and he said it really brought out the natural characteristics in the wood. He thought maybe you can apply it over a finished surface without stripping. I googled it quickly:

OSMO - High quality, natural wood finishes and maintenance products

Anyway..I stained the cupboard doors with Minwax Wood-Finish (walnut). It took a long time to dry. (Now we're approaching the much cooler fall weather).
I covered them with 4 very thin coats of waterbase Rustoleum Ultimate polyurethane when they were dry. The "Ultimate" is apparently more scratch resistant than their other water-based poly. I have been happy with this waterbase poly. I've used it on all of my projects this year. It dries super-fast, no fumes.
I did think about another coat of stain over the top to deepen the color and cover some of the "zebra striped" woodgrain, but was afraid it would take a long time to dry. (They would be sitting everywhere in my living room to dry).

But I think that what's I'm going to need to do. I've never tried the Polyshade minwax..just the Wood-Finish (assuming there is a difference..I think there is). Should I sand the surface to receive the polyshade? I think I would have to seal them a again with polyurethane. Does the minwax polyshade dry quickly?

Thanks for your help. Really appreciated. I love wood, but I'm not a pro and I appreciate the help very much. Just trying to freshen up our old furniture. I might try to post a picture later if I don't have success...
 
  #5  
Old 10-01-12, 12:21 PM
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I found the OSMO website..I must have given you a link to some kind of project supply webstore I think..

It is a German made wood finish, apparently.
OSMO NA - High quality, natural wood finishes and maintenance products
 
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Old 10-01-12, 12:27 PM
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Polyshades is polyurethane, it just has a little color added to it. Scuff sand the existing surface with 220 grit like between all coats of polyurethane before application. Just to give yourself a non-colored wear layer, it's not a bad idea to finish with a coat or two of clear when you're done.

That said, I don't know if polyshades comes in water based, you'll want to look at that.
 
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Old 10-01-12, 02:18 PM
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I looked thru the OSMO site but couldn't determine if their products will work over your existing finish

I'm pretty sure PolyShades only comes in oil base but you could tint your waterbased poly by adding some latex paint to it. It would take some experimentation on some scrap wood to get your coloring right. Basically you would be making your own semi-transparent paint. It is always a good idea to coat tinted poly with clear to protect the color from wear.

The homemade mixture would likely dry just a little slower than the poly did without color mixed in. You should always sand between coats - it promotes adhesion. A scuff sand with 220 grit is fine.
Applying regular wood stain over the poly is not a good idea!
 
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Old 10-01-12, 02:21 PM
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Thank you for the help..much appreciated..!
 
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Old 10-01-12, 02:25 PM
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What an awesome idea!! That would dry faster. I could really control the color and even how opaque it is.. I can get a sample jar of paint for 2.89 at Lowes to tint the poly. I noticed when I bought paint for another project that they actually sell semi-transparent indoor latex. But adding a little color to the quick dry poly is a great idea
 
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Old 10-01-12, 02:35 PM
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Wish I could take credit but it's an old painter's trick
Just make sure the 2 coatings are compatible! If they both clean up with water, you're good to go. If one cleans up with water and the other with paint thinner :NO NO NO:
 
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Old 10-01-12, 02:36 PM
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Polyshades

Recently all the major Polyurathane manufacturers have added water based lines. They are more costly and vary in results. I would check the woodworker magazines at the library or their web sites for any articles on which manufacturers brands work best mixing color into. Good luck!
BTW Polyshades is not water based.
 
  #12  
Old 10-01-12, 03:38 PM
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I had some paint on hand. I had to mix some latex colors to get walnut (even a tiny little bit of acrylic ceramic paint to warm the color). Hallelujah. It deepened the color and subdued the cheapo dark plywood woodgrain effect because it was semi-transparent..just enough opaque properties to soften the dark woodgrain. It dries fast. It's good thing because while I was walking the drawer outside to put on a table in the sunshine to dry..(I was looking at it and marveling at the appearance) ..when I walked through a spider web occupied by big FAT garden spider, which quickly took up residency in my long hair. I immediately dropped the drawer in the grass and did everything but rip my hair out to get it out. After a few feverish moments of that..I picked up the drawer, especting the worst. It had already dried before I dropped it and no harm was done. I'm going to do some of the doors too so everyhting will match. I tried a little experiment.. the cupboard casings were dinged up from age and I rubbed some of that in the wood and the bare scratch marks disappeared and dried with minutes. I'm going to do some of my old scratched furniture. It's kinda like Old English polish, only permanent. YAY! Thank you!
 
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Old 10-01-12, 03:47 PM
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Glad it worked for you!
Your spider tale made me chuckle although I'm sure your view was a LOT different
 
  #14  
Old 10-01-12, 07:27 PM
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Hi:
I just came in from finishing the cupboard doors. They look rich and dark, with a subtle woodgrain..you can see it, but it's just right. After I painted the poly/paint mix on, I realized that dust was settling on it. My husband had blown pine needles off of the roof earlier that morning, but there was still dust in the air. Yikes. After they dried (which didn't take very long)..I sanded them with really fine steel wool and it rubbed the dust floaties off easily and gave it a smooth finish so I wiped them down and could put the clear poly on. They were really smooth.

Honestly, with that poly/paint mix I could have even mixed a dark cherry wood color (if I had wanted to) and it would have turned out beautifully (especially since it was stained already and it would have only been a matter of adding the transparent color over it). This was an awesome thing to learn.

I have to say..I'm really impressed with all of you and your prompt replies. I've been to other topical forums and nobody answered anyone's question. They didn't care. All of you were amazing and I'm going to recommend this website to my friends on facebook. Thank you so much. We're renovationg 3 rooms in our tired old home. Lots of DIY projects and using some Habititat for Humanity finds..which often need work. This is my new resource. Our next challenge will be to find out how to resurface (paint) a bathtub. We are on a tight budget, so we thought we would try that first before we buy a bathtub/shower set.
So..I'll be back to website many times, I'm sure. Many thanks.
 
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Old 10-02-12, 04:35 AM
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For future reference - it's never a good idea to use steel wool when the top coat will be waterbased. If there are any steel fibers left on the wood they will turn to rust in short order

DIY refinishing of tubs has a poor track record, partly because of the coatings available to homeowners but most from improper prep. They also sell a drop in liner for tubs that is supposed to work well.
 
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Old 10-02-12, 11:35 AM
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I'll remember to use the extra fine sandpaper next time (Still learning as I go). I wiped the wood down with a slightly damp rag after I used the steel wool. (rag rinsed lots of times) and then dried the wood with a towel before I applied the poly. So...I'm really hoping there won't be a problem. Thank you for letting me know. I'm sure I would have made the same mistake in the future.

The bathtub...Yea, I've had a lot of trepidation about doing it that way. My husband's idea. My husband and I make a lot of things with our hands, are fairly meticulous and perfectionistic when we work on a project...but I REALLY haven't had a good feeling about that one. I'll look into a tub liner but I think a new tub/shower will be the way to go.

We had also begun to gather information on countertop resurfacing and noticed someone had done one on the DIY facebook page. Living on a small retirement wage has presented some challenges, but we have been resourceful and have found some really cool and creative ways to make the things we need.
HOWEVER..I appreciate good advice and want to avoid something that's going to be a bust. I really appreciate the information.

So....what do you think about countertop resurfacing? I'd rather know now.....
Really grateful to you for taking the time to answer my questions.
 
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Old 10-02-12, 11:43 AM
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I haven't done it but someone within the last year or so reported back that they had had good results with the Rustoleum counter resurfacing kit.
 
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Old 10-02-12, 01:02 PM
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This person used the Giani Granite Kit. The Rustoluem counter kit looked really user friendly, but they don't have a white or white varigated. They have many other beautiful colors..but we need a cool white, not a warm color, like cream. I think the Giani brand maybe had something like that, not sure. Hope it works as well..
As always,
Thank you
 
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Old 10-02-12, 02:01 PM
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I'm leery of resurfacing [painting] countertops especially if it's in the kitchen..... if/when it fails there is the chance the chips might find their way into your food

When I redid our kitchen I used tile on the tops, it was cheaper than buying laminate tops. The only thing I'd do different is use a dark grout [or at least colored] White grout is a bear to keep clean
 
  #20  
Old 10-02-12, 02:44 PM
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I was going to do tile, I actually love tile and we are planning that for our bathroom counter top (dark grout). But we have dark wood and old-looking white brick in our kitchen..(country/cottage style). I was afraid of too much going on... The proximity of the two surfaces would make it look a little crazy. BTW..I gave you guys a special thank you on the DIY facebook page. Appreciate..
 
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