pre-dye conditioner?

Discussion in 'Finely Finished' started by alathIN, Aug 25, 2019.

  1. alathIN

    alathIN Tele-Holic

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    Using Keda dye mixed in water then will shoot nitro over it.
    What's your favorite pre-dye conditioner?
     
  2. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Tele-Afflicted

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    Sandpaper. I'm one of those people who applies stain directly to wood without "sealing" it. I'm told that's wrong. I like the results.

    I did a test sample with stain on bare wood and wood that had been sealed with vinyl sealer and shellac. I was much happier with the bare wood. You should experiment with your stain and your wood.
     
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  3. Meteorman

    Meteorman Tele-Holic

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    What kinda wood are ya workin with?
     
  4. Chunkocaster

    Chunkocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    I condition the wood by dampening it with water to raise the grain a few times and knocking it back down by sanding until it stops raising. Then I dampen with water before applying the dye.

    I use colortone wood stain diluted with water.
     
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  5. alathIN

    alathIN Tele-Holic

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    Black cherry.
     
  6. alathIN

    alathIN Tele-Holic

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    Current project is a cherry top Aerodyne (carved top) Strat.

    The tele in the Avatar (and pic below) is also a cherry top.
    When I first dyed it, it had some "heavy" areas where they dye really soaked in and made it much darker, borderline black.
    I figured this was because some areas were more porous and I should have used a conditioner.
    Now that the guitar is two years old it's much more subtle.

    This was when it was pretty newly nitro'd
    IMG_20180228_141622234.jpg

    So maybe I should just quit worrying about it.
    Turned out good the first time?
     
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  7. Meteorman

    Meteorman Tele-Holic

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    yes, the cherry i use in PA is one of those woods that does stain/dye in a blotchy way, altho not as bad as pine.
    But of course cherry ages darker upon exposure to sunlight, so if you don't mind the initial blotchiness for the short-term, maybe you can get away without conditioning.
     
  8. stevemc

    stevemc Tele-Holic

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    it's a pretty guitar.who am i to argue,lol.
     
  9. Silverface

    Silverface Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    It looks a bit blotchy to me.

    What you are looking for is not called a "conditioner". It's a "sanding sealer". They are manufactured with specific blends of (clear) pigments of varied size and porosity. They control the penetration speed of the dye (or stain), allowing you to wipe areas that are beginning to oversaturate with a solvent dampened cloth. This "pulls" the color out, lets you blend edges and basically control the color.

    Without sanding sealer - or with a non-sealer used as one (like shellac) you have to be either really fast or really lucky to have decent control over color penetration and saturation.

    Hope that helps.
     
  10. alathIN

    alathIN Tele-Holic

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  11. OakhurstAxe

    OakhurstAxe TDPRI Member

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    With conditioners, read directions carefully. They usually have you applying stain while it is still wet.
    If you use Silverface's suggestion of sanding sealer, it shouldn't be wet when applying stain.

    The type of wood determines if you need conditioner. Oak, you don't need it (are guitars made of oak?). Maple pretty much ALWAYS needs it to not be blotchy when staining. Figured/flame maple even more so. Stain gets pulled into end grain faster as well. The guy mentioning keeping it damp with water should work most of the time and is just as valid if you have practice with it (I don't do it but seen it done right)

    Just wanted to add a couple additional tips. That red guitar looks like it could have used conditioner/sanding sealer first, but I think it still looks pretty good.
     
  12. alathIN

    alathIN Tele-Holic

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    Thanks. Yes the goal is to do a little better the next time.
     
  13. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    On cherry I prefer to get something in there before the dye to control blotching. On maple I might do the same. I've used everything from thinned down varnish ("waterlox" oil based wiping varnish) to thinned sealer, but it's always possible to use thinned dewaxed blonde shellac. You'd be surprised how much dye still soaks into the wood even with a light spit coat or conditioner coat.

    I would never use a pre-packaged 'conditioner' product unless I knew exactly what was in it and whether it would play nice with the rest of the finish system I plan to use.
     
  14. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    By the way, the dye might actually dissolve in multiple solvents besides water. It's not unusual for a "water" dye to be soluble in alcohol or even in lacquer thinner. SO there could be an issue of your first coat of nitro being wet enough for the dye to bleed. You'll know it if you have too much lacquer and it drips or runs, then the little teardrops will be darker than the rest of the coating (I speak from experience on such mistakes). The solution is to just use a few mist coats at first until the dye is locked in, then rock and roll with your spray gun.
     
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