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Matching color of old cherry wood to new

Posted by wolnekram (My Page) on
Sat, Sep 12, 09 at 22:14

We are in the process of building a new "old" home. I purchased an old newel post that once gently stripped, is beautifully patinated cherry. To meet the code regs of the railing height more (new) cherry was added to the bottom.
Any suggestions regarding how to get these two woods much closer in color? Also the hand rail is new cherry as well. Any help deeply appreciated. Thanks in advance. I will try to follow with post of pictures.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Matching color of old cherry wood to new

The cherry frame of this cabinet (the door panels are maple) were dyed with a solution of lye and water. I was told that it is the only way to instantly age cherry wood. Does it look close? The thing about stains on cherry is that they muddy the grain more or less, but this treatment changes the color of the wood itself. Hope this helps, if you need more details let me know.

RE: Matching color of old cherry wood to new

I have used lye to age cherry, but it comes with three warnings:
- It is extremely caustic. Skin, and especially eye, protection is mandatory.

- You may have a hard time finding it. It used to be as easy as Red Devil drain cleaner at the grocery store. Thanks to meth labs, you can't get this any longer.

- It is what I call a "ready, fire, aim" approach. You will get what you get with no chance to force the results. You can adjust the results, somewhat, in advance, by sampling various concentrations of water and lye crystals. But I have gotten different results on different pieces of wood with the same solution.

Another option is to
- Apply a heavy coat of boiled linseed oil, let it soak for 20 minutes, and wipe off all the excess
- Let dry several days or more
- Apply garnet shellac (Dewaxed if you are going to follow up with polyurethane or w/b finish).
- Apply finish of choice

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