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Thread: Polyshades

  1. #1

    Polyshades

    Has any one had any luck using Minwax Polyshades Bombay Mahogany. I really like the color but I am finding it is almost imposible to apply. Thanks Troy

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    Bedford County, Virginia
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    I cannot for the life of me figure why after so many years of production, Minwax Polyshades is still manufactured. They use as a lure the supposed ease of applying stain and polyurethane in one step, but it just doesn't work like that. What you wind up doing is overlapping and creating blotchy areas and unevenness. The problem is not in your methods. The problem is the product itself. If you've only tried it with a test piece, then get some stain for your project and apply clear varnish once the stain dries. If you've actually applied polyshades to a project, you probably need to strip it and start over.

    I really wish Minwax would quit making that stuff. Their stain is great. Their polyurethane is kinda-sorta-OK. But Polyshades? Never.
    Last edited by Mark Pruitt; 11-19-2006 at 3:17 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
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    SE PA - Central Bucks County
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    Run...don't walk (even at a brisk pace)...from this product in the future. It's very difficult to get an even coloration unless you spray and even then it can be a challenge.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  4. #4
    Pick up your can of Polyshades, and walk to the nearest trash can! Oops! Can't do that! Since it's solvent based, it'll be considered Haz-Mat... So just open the can, and put it outside to evaporate/dry up.

    Seriously, Polyshades has got to be the worst product Minwax has ever made. I used up mine - after a severely botched project - by putting it on shop fixtures and such. Even those are blotchy and uneven.

    You'll need to strip it off your piece, restain using a 'conventional' stain or gel stain, and then finish using one of the clear finishes.

    I particularly like Sherwin-Williams stains, and General Finishes Arm-R-Seal poly varnish, but Minwax's Fast-drying Poly seems pretty good, too.

  5. #5
    Like everyone else says, that is the worst finishing product produced. I tried it hoping to get a nice deep red finish and it is the worst to apply. I ended up using it on a shop cart and it still looks terrible. Minwax definitely needs to abandon that product line.
    * * * * * * * *
    Mark Patoka
    Stafford, VA
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  6. #6
    Thanks everyone for the fast replies, I wont be using it. I love this web board. Troy

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Woodstock, Ont. Canada
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    283
    Worked OK for me! This pine desk has 2 coats poly shades with a top coat of clear gloss poly. I used a foam brush, being carefull to eliminate any runs. plantaion desk.jpg

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
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    There was a gentleman who served as the resident expert at the WOOD Online finishing forum a few years ago that basically said, "Polyshades was the worst thing that anyone ever did to a can." That brought many chuckles...
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  9. #9
    It works great for moldings. Who wants to put stain and then finish - even if you spray both - on floor moldings?

  10. #10
    After a lot of trial and error I am going to use Mohawk cherry toner I have never used a toner before so we will see how it goes.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Shoreline, CT
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    What is it that makes you want to use a toner--Polyshades is just a particularly bad example of a toner. Unless you already have a film finish on the project, it is almost always best to begin with coloring the wood directly with a dye and/or stain. Then certain effects can be achieved with a toner, but toners are almost always spray applied because of the problems with overlaps, etc. Polyshades exhibits the worst of the problems, but unless you are quite careful any toner can have some of the same problems in achieving evenness.

  12. #12
    I am making a headboard out of cherry and want to match it to some Bassett furniture a coworker bought that is also cherry. So after getting the headboard done I tried to match the color but couldnt come close with anything. So today I called Bassett and they said they use Mohawk cherry Ultra Toner M100-0408. The bed is bare wood so I will put a barrier coat on first then the toner. If it was mine I would just keep it natural but she wants it to match her other furniture which is only about 2 weeks old. Troy

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    Bedford County, Virginia
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    Troy, why not just mix some toner in with the appropriate solvent and apply it to the piece? (I would probably do a washcoat first.) Then apply your varnish on top of that. Try this on a scrap piece first and see how you like it.

    If you can get your hands on a copy of Flexner's Understanding Wood Finishing, you'll find a ton of helpful information not only for your present job but for almost anything you'll finish in the future.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
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    Leesville, SC
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    2,349
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker
    There was a gentleman who served as the resident expert at the WOOD Online finishing forum a few years ago that basically said, "Polyshades was the worst thing that anyone ever did to a can." That brought many chuckles...
    I agree with that....
    Army Veteran 1968 - 1970
    NRA Lifetime Member
    I Support the Second Amendment of the US Constitution

  15. #15
    I use it a lot for adding color to match other pieces. I only use it as a wipe on so the film builds up slowly. Brushing it is almost impossible.
    Wife's request is another excuse for a new tool!!!

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