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Thread: Need Green Colored Wood

  1. #1
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    Need Green Colored Wood

    I have over 200 hundred pieces of 1/2 x 3/3 x 20 inch long pieces of wood that I would like to turn to a Christmas Green color. There used to be a pickling process that would turn wood a color but leave it where you could see the wood grain. That is close to what I want to do but with the color green. I have found all kinds of Pickling that is White and other colors but nothing that is Green. I thought about getting some really concentrated Christmas Green Fabric Dye and dip them into that. The wood I am using is a very pale cedar so it would absorb some of the dye that way but not sure how it would go. Has anyone done anything like this before. Any guidance or ideas would greatly be appreciated. Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    Transtint offers a green wood dye. https://www.amazon.com/TransTint-Dye.../dp/B0037M8Y2E

  3. #3
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    How about some green aniline dye? Lots of woodworking stores carry it.
    “Pay no attention to what you cannot control..” Epictetus, 100 A.D.
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  4. #4
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    Transtint dye would be my first idea, too. But if your cedar has any red tint to it, then the green dye may end up tinting the wood brown instead of the desired green. If you use a high enough concentration of green dye it may still end up green, just impossible to know for sure until you try it.

    John

  5. #5
    When you use dye, it doesn't penetrate the wood very deeply so if you sand after you apply the dye, it will change the color the more you sand. The companies who dye veneer use pressure to force the wood completely through the veneer.

    If your wood needs to be smooth, I'd sand it, then wet it to raise the grain, then sand it with fine sandpaper when it's good and dry, then apply the dye.

    But if what you have is aromatic cedar you're going to have a hard time getting it green, as John mentioned above. You get your best results with dye from wood that is light colored,porous and even grained.

    I'd probably just paint it.

    Mike
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  6. #6
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    Thanks for the ideas. I did not think of the Aniline Dye, what little experience I have with it, it was really concentrated. A little went a long way.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wade Holloway View Post
    Thanks for the ideas. I did not think of the Aniline Dye, what little experience I have with it, it was really concentrated. A little went a long way.
    There's no such thing as aniline dye these days, even though some companies still market them as such. Transtint, TransFast, etc. are the modern and safe version of aniline dye.

    John

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Wade Holloway View Post
    I have over 200 hundred pieces of 1/2 x 3/3 x 20 inch long pieces of wood that I would like to turn to a Christmas Green color. There used to be a pickling process that would turn wood a color but leave it where you could see the wood grain. That is close to what I want to do but with the color green. I have found all kinds of Pickling that is White and other colors but nothing that is Green. I thought about getting some really concentrated Christmas Green Fabric Dye and dip them into that. The wood I am using is a very pale cedar so it would absorb some of the dye that way but not sure how it would go. Has anyone done anything like this before. Any guidance or ideas would greatly be appreciated. Thanks in advance.
    If you are looking for green pickling then just thin down some oil based green paint. That's all the white pickling stain is, is thinned down white paint. Something that small you could use latex paint. It's just larger projects like a piece of furniture you need more open time and oil based paint would give you that. If you just want the wood as though the wood were naturally green you could use an green aniline dye stain. Another option would be to get some green ink and thin it with alcohol. Personally I like Mohawk Ultra Penetrating Stain. https://www.mohawk-finishing.com/pro...ing-ngr-stain/ Just be sure when using any dye stain you wear rubber gloves. It will stain your paws like ink and is very hard to clean off.

  9. #9
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    The Mohawk Stain sounds good to. I have over 200 pieces to do so something that you can just wipe or even dip sounds really good. Thanks.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Wade Holloway View Post
    The Mohawk Stain sounds good to. I have over 200 pieces to do so something that you can just wipe or even dip sounds really good. Thanks.
    If you are going to dip or wipe the Mohawk stain be sure to thin it with alcohol. The dye is very concentrated and might go a lot darker than you want. It's intended to just have a light coat sprayed on it. Be sure to try any dye on scraps before you use it on any project.

  11. #11
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    Wade, I had some Transtint green dye in the shop, so I did a quick test on some un-sanded maple. green dye.jpg
    Last edited by Stan Calow; 11-13-2019 at 9:09 AM.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Calow View Post
    Edward, I had some Transtint green dye in the shop, so I did a quick test on some un-sanded maple. green dye.jpg
    I've just never used transtint so I can't comment on how it works. I started off using dye from Star finishing products and many years ago Mohawk bought them out and have been using theirs since. The dyes come in handy adjusting a stain color. The green dye can be used to counter red and vice versa.

  13. #13
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    Stan what did you mix it with and at what concentration? That looks like it would be the perfect color.

  14. #14
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    Wade, the bottle instructions were 2 oz (one small bottle) per 2 quarts of either water or alcohol. I didn't measure, just eyeballed a couple of squirts into a cup of water. I've used it in alcohol before which avoids the grain-raising of water. The thing about dye is that it will get darker with additional coats. I think I did three coats one this piece to even the color out. But I have used stronger concentrations in the past, to get it darker faster. You do want to put a clear coat finish on it or the dye will come out if it gets wet again. Its not cheap. I've wondered if food coloring would work just as well, if you're doing primary colors.

    I thought I read somewhere that there was a reason to using water vs alcohol, but I don't remember what it was.

  15. #15
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    Food coloring is not nearly as light fast as Transtint, or most other wood dyes. But food coloring actually works quite well and lasts a long time if your topcoat has good UV inhibitors in it, such as GF's High Performance Poly. But for anything I really cared about I would use Transtint, et al.

    I normally use Transtint in DNA, just to avoid the grain raising issue Stan mentioned. I did a comparison test a few years ago of Transtint in water vs. DNA. To my surprise the samples where I used water as the diluent had better "depth" or "pop" to the grain. My guess as to the underlying reason is that DNA evaporates much more quickly than water and doesn't carry the dye as deeply into the wood.

    John

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