Staining Hemlock French Doors

pameliaccApril 21, 2008

We are opening a wall and installing new French doors. The doors are in our garage and will be installed on Saturday. We don't have a lot of experience staining so we have a lot of questions.

Should we stain before or after we install the door?

What stain method would you recommend (brush on or wipe on)?

Should I pre condition the wood first?

What product is better to seal with (polyurethane, oil varnish, varathane diamond)?

Does hemlock stain easily or do we need to take caution?

My garage is cold, does temperature matter when staining like when painting?

Sorry about all the questions but this is a huge project for us. We have waited five years to install a door and we really want it to look good.

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Most softwoods are prone to blotching.

I'd recommend a good gel stain. If you decide to use a pre-conditioner, ignore the directions. They work best if let dry overnight.

Yes, temperature matters.

Here is a link that might be useful: Staining softwoods

    Bookmark   April 21, 2008 at 10:18PM
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Thank you for your help. I did read the article on staining soft wood, very interesting. I will buy some gel stain. I guess I will wait until the door is installed to stain since our garage is too cold.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2008 at 9:46AM
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To answer your question, most finishes have a critical temperature below which they will not cure, or they will cure, but not to their full strength.

The easiest finish to do is a wipe-on varnish. See link.

Choosing a finish

Here is a link that might be useful: Finishing for First Timers

    Bookmark   April 22, 2008 at 6:13PM
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I would recommend hanging then then poping the hinge pins and stain them in the house over plastic drop clothes, after the poly top coat(or whatever you use)rehang them, thus reducing the handling as a whole unit

    Bookmark   April 23, 2008 at 9:30AM
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