Stain and coating for a new vertical grain douglas fir door
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BlakeAronson



Joined: 14 Jul 2009
Posts: 48
Location: Long Beach, CA

PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 4:33 pm    Post subject: Stain and coating for a new vertical grain douglas fir door Reply with quote

I managed to obtain a new douglas fir dutch door with jamb on craigslist for 1/3 the price of retail! very happy about that.

The door is unfinished though, ive done a lot of staining inside with wipe on gel stains and wipe on poly and it's all turned out great (i've done a pretty bad job with more traditional brush on stains and coats).

What can products do you recommend for staining and sealing the exterior portion? Note I am a rookie/amateur at stains/finishes so I'd prever the most forgiving options if there are any. the door faces SE but with my covered porch it doesn't get more than an hour or two of morning sun.

looking for a nice amber orangish color.

also note I'm in CA so many oil products are unavailable to me :(



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Victor



Joined: 07 Aug 2010
Posts: 35
Location: Pacific North West

PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2013 10:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That is a beautiful door!

In the past two years, I've replaced both my front and rear doors with VG Fir.

Here's what I did:

After lots of finish sanding up to 220 grit inside and out.

On the exteriors I used: Boiled linseed oil for color. With VG Fir, there is no reason to use a stain. Linseed oil will give it a gorgeous warm natural color. Or in your words, a "nice amber orangish color"

http://www.tarsmell.com/boiledlinseed.html

Then about four or five coats of Le Tonkinois, Number One

http://www.tarsmell.com/number_one.html

On the interiors, again a liberal application of boiled linseed oil. Then followed up Le Tonkinois Parquets.

For some reason I cannot seem to find a link to the product. Not sure if it is no longer available in the country.

Not sure if that was the correct product for a door. But that's what I used, it looks great, and is holding up even better.

Looking back, I would have done things a little different.

Step one would have been the linseed oil. Allowed to dry for several days.

Step two would have been either Smith and Co. CPES.
http://www.smithandcompany.org/CPES/

Or, Le Tonkinois Bioimpression Sealer.
http://www.tarsmell.com/bioimpression.html

I've never used the bioimpression product, so I have no idea if it is easy to use, and what color it imparts to the wood.

And then finally four or five coats of the Le Tonkinois.

The Le Tonkonois products ship out of California, so they can probably be used there. No solvents in them. Or few enough solvents that they should be okay to use in CA.

I applied the No. 1 product straight. Looking back, I probably would have been better off cutting it with Naptha. And applying it as a wiping varnish rather than with a brush.

I'm not a Le tonkonois varnish and CPES expert by any means, but I have enough experience with the products mentioned to be getting great results with VG Fir, aside from the bioimpression, to answer any questions you might have.

All the woodwork in my house in VG Fir. And I've been systematically refinishing it all from worst to first.

The Number 1 product is definitely okay to use on interior pieces. It's just not a hard varnish, so it's better for use outdoors exposed to the elements.
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BlakeAronson



Joined: 14 Jul 2009
Posts: 48
Location: Long Beach, CA

PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2013 8:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the info victor,

I think I am going to go with your initial method of boiled linseed oil followed my the number 1 oil. I like the idea of never having to strip the door in the future, simply clean and reapply a couple coats.

my only concern is if I get enough amber orange color with just the linseed oil, sometimes newer douglas fir ends up looking more pinkish than orange.

Do you think the 1 liter can of the number 1 product is enough to do 4 or 5 coats on one side of a door? (i'll be sticking with my gel stain/poly top method on the inside to match up with everything else i've done) the 2.5 liter can is $70 so it would be nice if i could get away with one $35 1 liter can.
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johnleeke
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Joined: 20 Aug 2004
Posts: 2999
Location: Portland, Maine, USA

PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2013 8:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
my only concern is if I get enough amber orange color


Test out your intended finish on the top or bottom edge of the door.

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Don Wagstaff



Joined: 09 Sep 2010
Posts: 101

PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 2:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello,

It seems to me that tung oil would be the better choice for getting what you are after, redder in color instead of yellow, darkening continually over time and marginally better protection from water. Beginning with a thinned out mix and then leaving out the turpentine, not the oil derived one, for later coatings. As far as covering that with a lacquer of any kind I would forgo this personally and just maintain the oil finish over the long run. You can get enough extra because it stores up indefinitely.

Regards,

Don Wagstaff
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Victor



Joined: 07 Aug 2010
Posts: 35
Location: Pacific North West

PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Don Wagstaff wrote:
Hello,

It seems to me that tung oil would be the better choice for getting what you are after, redder in color instead of yellow, darkening continually over time and marginally better protection from water.

Regards,

Don Wagstaff


Being in CA, and the door being protected with a porch I think tung oil would be a good choice. Better than straight linseed oil with no protective varnish coating.

And less expensive and a lot easier as well.

I agree tung oil would bring out more red than linseed oil will. But, as the fir ages it will begin to turn red regardless if tung oil or linseed oil is used.

Whatever method is chosen, I stand by that no stain should be used on the door since fir has such a rich color that is brought out with the oil.
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Victor



Joined: 07 Aug 2010
Posts: 35
Location: Pacific North West

PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

BlakeAronson wrote:
Thanks for the info victor,

Do you think the 1 liter can of the number 1 product is enough to do 4 or 5 coats on one side of a door? (i'll be sticking with my gel stain/poly top method on the inside to match up with everything else i've done) the 2.5 liter can is $70 so it would be nice if i could get away with one $35 1 liter can.


What color are you trying to match?

I know its your door and all, but once you stain you are pretty committed... Pick up a couple pieces of VG fir trim from the lumbar store and test on those first. That's what I did anyways. And shortly after a few tests, I got scared of the possibility of ruining my new doors, and decided the color from the oil was all I needed. Sometimes the simplest solution is the best, especially when it comes to colors.

1 liter is probably enough for one side.
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Don Wagstaff



Joined: 09 Sep 2010
Posts: 101

PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 2:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello,

Tung oil, "the linseed oil of the Far East" I always say, being pressed from the seed of the Chinese nut tree.

Is it the less expensive alternative to linseed oil where your, Victor? For me it's the opposite. I love the smell of tung oil, also known, in my part of the world as Chinese houtolie, that is to say Chinese wood oil. Dries faster than linseed oil, is more water resistant but less so to alcohol making it not as good a choice for counter tops or tables for example.

Greetings,

Don Wagstaff
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BlakeAronson



Joined: 14 Jul 2009
Posts: 48
Location: Long Beach, CA

PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think I'll try the tung oil out first then.

no top coats? just a few coats of the tung oil and i'm done? then maitenance coats every couple years?

as for the inside, all the original trim was a very dark brown, i found it under multiple layers of paint. I used a java gel stain (off the top of my head i think it's a general finishes brand) that is very easy to apply and gives me uniform results, i topped it with wipe on polyurethane.

i think having the inside of the door a natural red would clash too much with the dark brown I have in the rest of the room.
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Don Wagstaff



Joined: 09 Sep 2010
Posts: 101

PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 9:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You probably know all of this but I'll post it up anyway because as simple as it is it should be done right to avoid a mess.
You could thin the tung oil to begin with, as much as you want up to a 50/50 mix and the thinner I would use is turpentine that is, the distillate of pine tree sap one. Wiping it on to get good coverage, let it stand about 15 minutes and take any extra up with a rag. Like I said this oil is fast drying so after a day is ready for another application either forgoing the thinner or using a much reduced ratio. Spread it on to get good coverage wait some portion of an hour and wipe it down and from this point it's a good idea to be a bit vigorous with wiping it because the heat from the rubbing is only helpful, then between applications use something like a scotchbrite pad, I think they are called to scour the surface, clean it and put more oil on there, wait, then rub it in. From here on you have to judge the build-up of applications yourself, not overdoing it. I can stop at three applications most times.
The heart of your question to me really is about subsequent oilings and I would say within the first year it could take more than you think, but at a minimum one more time at six months, then your done with the initial treatment and the rest is proper maintenance which, unlike a finish coating of lacquer or something, will, you can be confident, only improve over time.

Regards,

Don Wagstaff
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johnleeke
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Joined: 20 Aug 2004
Posts: 2999
Location: Portland, Maine, USA

PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 1:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh yes! Don includes the one ingredient that is often left out of methods here in the oh so modern USA: time.

The traditional finish treatment is built up over a period of time, months or even years. This allows weathering, and the resulting "residues" of weathering to become part of the treatment.

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