Bionic

Aging wood - Steel wool and vinegar mixture.

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Has anyone personally used this method to recreate an old gray look on boards?

Having my log home blasted back to bare raw wood in about another month, and a half, and will be going to have a natural stain, and satin clear finish.  The roof is dark green, and my dad, and I are going to build a front door for my home.  The front door will be planks up, and down, with a Z on the exterior.   It will match the theme of all the interior doors we built.  Anyways, the exterior will be rough cut boards, and would like to try this steel wool/vinegar mixture, to give weathered gray, barnlike look.  

Has anyone personally used this?

I see sometimes it results in a brown look....however, after youtubing, and youtubing, I see people are also adding hydrogen peroxide,  and THAT seems to turn it brownish, the more peroxide thats added.

I am going to practice on scrap boards of the same boards that will be from the door build.

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I've experimented with that. I've also tried something called tea staining which uses tea bags. IIRC, there was one or two other ways to age the wood but I can't recall at the moment. Your best bet is to do like you said and try out different concoctions of stain. Every type of wood will react differently. What type of wood are you planning on using?

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Always experiment on scrap!!

I've never used vinegar to change a wood color. I have used just about everything else, however, from industrial strength ammonia to ground up black walnut hulls. I had a wood-working shop 20 years ago.

Part of the problem with any staining technique that uses steel wool is that the wool is almost always Chinese-made these days and is loaded with various impurities and chemicals. That's probably where the brown coloring comes from. I don't even know of a company in the U.S. that manufactures steel wool any more. You might want to search for a professional finishing site that shows how to 'clean' the Chinese steel wool. I believe I've read that it can be done. Best of luck.

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Strain the mix, on rough cut you'll leave particles caught up that will make spots.

Use a solvent based top coat, water based will change the effect.

I suggest you do some samples and let them dry completely and put a top coat on to see how long you want to let wool soak in vinegar for the stain part.

There are several aging stains on market too(thats what I use)

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Give it a name, apply human sentiment, and its no longer a wild animal its a Disney character.

 

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16 minutes ago, NonTypical said:

I've experimented with that. I've also tried something called tea staining which uses tea bags. IIRC, there was one or two other ways to age the wood but I can't recall at the moment. Your best bet is to do like you said and try out different concoctions of stain. Every type of wood will react differently. What type of wood are you planning on using?

Pine will be used, so it flows with the home.  Going for very backwoods rustic.  I will post a video I found in a bit.

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6 minutes ago, philoshop said:

Always experiment on scrap!!

I've never used vinegar to change a wood color. I have used just about everything else, however, from industrial strength ammonia to ground up black walnut hulls. I had a wood-working shop 20 years ago.

Part of the problem with any staining technique that uses steel wool is that the wool is almost always Chinese-made these days and is loaded with various impurities and chemicals. That's probably where the brown coloring comes from. I don't even know of a company in the U.S. that manufactures steel wool any more. You might want to search for a professional finishing site that shows how to 'clean' the Chinese steel wool. I believe I've read that it can be done. Best of luck.

Most definitely will be experimenting on scrap.

Thanks for the luck, and input.  Just looking for a ton of character, so to be honest, the impurities I am really not to concerned with.  However, it is something I will try to look into, as far as cleaning the wool.  I did see it mentioned in a video.

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7 minutes ago, Dinsdale said:

Strain the mix, on rough cut you'll leave particles caught up that will make spots.

Use a solvent based top coat, water based will change the effect.

I suggest you do some samples and let them dry completely and put a top coat on to see how long you want to let wool soak in vinegar for the stain part.

There are several aging stains on market too(thats what I use)

I think a coffee filter is what some are using to strain/filter.  I appreciate the reminder, I did forget that.

I was thinking about using a floor clear coat at the very end, for durability, to help protect from getting bumped into with bags, and her purse...I know I will be super careful, I am a nutjob about that stuff. I am a waterbased fan honestly, since I chose a lot of natural finished hickory,  and pines, for that blonde look.  I dont like the poly yellowing, or darkening, or ambering.  Waterbased has stayed true to its original color for me.

Also this door will have a full glass door in front to protect from the direct weather.  It might even be tinted like my regular windows.

Any suggestions for weathered gray stains that you have used?

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17 minutes ago, Bionic said:

 

Any suggestions for weathered gray stains that you have used?

I think last one I used was the Rustoleum/ Varathane "weathered accelerator" or something close to that. 

Fair popular now with the increase in wanting the reclaimed look with out the price; so there are quite a few on the market.

Used the vinegar/steel mix to make a few boards to hide in when short on reclaimed for a job and came out fine. But I do this to make money and its easy for me to tell someone go to Home Depot and go buy me something in a can than run around and cleaning steel wool. (Paper coffee cup and some denatured alcohol or lacquer thinner rinse for that.)

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Give it a name, apply human sentiment, and its no longer a wild animal its a Disney character.

 

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13 minutes ago, Dinsdale said:

I think last one I used was the Rustoleum/ Varathane "weathered accelerator" or something close to that. 

Fair popular now with the increase in wanting the reclaimed look with out the price; so there are quite a few on the market.

Used the vinegar/steel mix to make a few boards to hide in when short on reclaimed for a job and came out fine. But I do this to make money and its easy for me to tell someone go to Home Depot and go buy me something in a can than run around and cleaning steel wool. (Paper coffee cup and some denatured alcohol or lacquer thinner rinse for that.)

You have been a big help, I appreciate it.  Thank you.

I have some planks from the old family farm, but I just cannot bring myself to use it on the door.  Planning to use them for a kitchen table top, with some old beam that I have weathering naturally outside.  

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So, I tinkered around with some stain brines, and I could not get a tone that I wanted.  No biggy, so I am going to leave the door natural in color, but coat it in clear, the same as my house will be done in.  Here are pics so far of the door my dad, and I have been working on.  I love rough cut, and rustic for my home, and this is my idea of that.  Having fun, and loving it.

Didn't think I would share pics, so the first pic is all crookedy sideways, but the first pic....closest end of door is the top

Z side of door is the outside.

20180822_171626.jpg

20180822_172443.jpg

Edited by Bionic
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ever think of burning it to harden it then seal it?


I've hunted almost everyday of my life.. the rest have been wasted!

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3 minutes ago, G-Man said:

ever think of burning it to harden it then seal it?

Honestly, no.  We are not too knowledgeable with wood sealants,  etc.  Dad was a mechanic, and I work for a Town Parks system,  we just do the best we can.  I wouldn't be confident enough with using a torch on this, as as ending up with a look I wouldn't prefer.  Any info on this you can share with me, tips? Maybe I will practice on scrap boards, and see how it looks.

 

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use a roofing torch . if it to dark you can sand to lighten. really makes grain pop out, hardening the wood is a good thing keeps rot away much longer. if you then seal it will last for many years

they use to do it on boards for roofs before shingles with no sealant. 

 

Edited by G-Man
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I've hunted almost everyday of my life.. the rest have been wasted!

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1 minute ago, G-Man said:

use a roofing torch . if it to dark you can sand to lighten. really makes grain pop out, hardening the wood is a good thing keeps rot away much longer. if you then seal it will last for many years

they use to do it on boards for roofs before shingles with no sealant. 

Interesting,  I did not know that.  Good info, this is very rough Amish cut wood though, would like to avoiding sanding it.  Still interested in this though... ..Have you tried the torch method on roughcut before? 

This door will be behind a tinted storm door too by the way. 

I still think I will experiment on some scrap wood, and see how I like it.

Any recommendations for a sealer? My house will be getting restored, and at that point, might have him seal it along with house.  Would like a satin sheen.

Thanks GMan

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friend and i just did his whole deck 12x40 it was rough cut pine. ill get some pics and post here when i get home

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I've hunted almost everyday of my life.. the rest have been wasted!

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2 minutes ago, G-Man said:

friend and i just did his whole deck 12x40 it was rough cut pine. ill get some pics and post here when i get home

That sounds great, I'd really appreciate that.

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friend was able to send me some ..13797.thumb.jpeg.39333acf993a4b29fb3726ba09c35af7.jpeg13795.thumb.jpeg.27a3a92ab3ca86fc2529cdfe76abd814.jpeg13801.thumb.jpeg.4af8c14a8f528f7e0b75608bb310e0ca.jpeg13799.thumb.jpeg.a69f0041182c39cced09bc001221ad91.jpegbefore and after satin sealer. 

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I've hunted almost everyday of my life.. the rest have been wasted!

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6 minutes ago, G-Man said:

friend was able to send me some ..13797.thumb.jpeg.39333acf993a4b29fb3726ba09c35af7.jpeg13795.thumb.jpeg.27a3a92ab3ca86fc2529cdfe76abd814.jpeg13801.thumb.jpeg.4af8c14a8f528f7e0b75608bb310e0ca.jpeg13799.thumb.jpeg.a69f0041182c39cced09bc001221ad91.jpegbefore and after satin sealer. 

Thats gorgeous.  I like that a lot.  Thank you for that.  For the theme of my house, I think of I try the torch method, I would go for a little bit of a lighter tone.  The house will be done in natural stain, and satin.   What did you ise for sealer if you dont mind me asking?

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was a 5 gallon pail of satin sealer on sale from home depot water based.. dont remember the name of top of my head. 

pictures really dont do it justice. looks much better in person

 just keep torch back further if to light in effect for you do another pass. 

Edited by G-Man
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I've hunted almost everyday of my life.. the rest have been wasted!

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5 minutes ago, G-Man said:

was a 5 gallon pail of satin sealer on sale from home depot water based.. dont remember the name of top of my head. 

pictures really dont do it justice. looks much better in person

 just keep torch back further if to light in effect for you do another pass. 

Ok, waterbased is all I use.  I dont likebthe ambering effect over time of oils.  Point is, sounds like you didn't seal it with anything special, so thats all I need to hear.  I like the water based polycrylic by minwax for interior work.  I will try the torch trick in a couple weeks when I am back in town.  Thanks again for the info, appreciate it.

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