NEW! Faster Search Option

Loading

Can you add color to Tung Oil?

SuperSaw's picture

Can you mix colors in with Tung Oil? Like mixing one of the TransTint colors to give some darkness to the finish than what the oil does by itself. I like using Tung Oil, or Tung Oil/Linseed Oil/Poly mix, but thought it might be nice to be able to make it darker.

Paul_Snyder's picture

(post #109092, reply #1 of 6)

Yes, you can add color to "tung oil" finishes and varnishes. Some tung oil finishes are actually a thinned wiping varnish and some are varnish with added oil. Here's a link to an article that lists a number of brands of each - http://www.popularwoodworking.com/features/finish2.html

Instead of the TransTint dyes, you can use oil-base dyes (available at woodfinishsupply.com), oil-base stains (Minwax and Benjamin Moore are good choices since they contain a high percenrage of dye vs. pigments), or you can add oil-base pigments like Japan colors in oil (same source as the oil-base dyes).

Using a stain is one of the easiest methods, though you will reduce the durability of a varnish and the finish will take longer to dry and cure.




Paul

F'burg, VA

Paul
website

AlanTurner's picture

(post #109092, reply #2 of 6)

Can you use aniline dyes also? Maybe put the dye in the first coat only, then subsequent coats w/o any color? Those that I have, but have not yet used, say they are soluoble in thinner or alcohol. Pllibly water also, although I can't recall without looking. They are Moser, from Woodworkers Supply.

Paul_Snyder's picture

(post #109092, reply #3 of 6)

You can't use the alcohol and water-base dyes with an oil-base product - you have to use the oil-base dyes.

I like to put 1-2 clear coats on the wood (stained or not) before putting on a coat that has color added (called a toner). Just enough to build an even film on the wood so that the toner coat sits on the film and provides an even layer of color. If you put a toner coat on bare or stained wood, some of it will soak into the wood and the color won't be even.

You can add your alcohol dyes to shellac for a color coat. Use the super blonde or ultra blonde flakes since they don't have much natural color. Use dewaxed flakes if you plan to use poly or water-base over the shellac for more durability.




Paul

F'burg, VA

Paul
website

AlanTurner's picture

(post #109092, reply #4 of 6)

Just to follow up since I am not sure that I understand. I would put 1 - 2 coats of a varnish oil on, then a coat of Shellac, tinted, then more oil varnish mix over that? Is that correct?


While I am at it, when I was playing with aniline dyes, they didn't seem too well powdered. Should I further grind them into the alcohol in a mortar and pestle, then use this tinted alcohol to mix my shellac? I am finishing a cherry piece, a sideboard, drawer base (with flame grained cherry veneered drawer fronts), maple cockbeading on the drawers, Cherry open hutch type top.


Finally, if I could expand this thread a drop, I was thinking of using clear shellac on the insides (and outsides, of course) of the drawers (except for the drawer fronts). Two coats, steel-wooled between. The drawer sides and bottoms are maple. This would be a smell free way to do it, and since these drawers will hold silverware and table linens primarily, they need to be clean. I thought I might finish the drawers insides and outsides first, so that when I do the inside of the drawer front (the drawer back?) I could wipe off of the finished surface any oil/varnish mix that might have gotten away from me. Is this a good procedure? I am a bit of a finishing novice, as you can see, and this is by far the most involved piece I have done to date.


Edited 11/3/2002 12:49:19 PM ET by s4s

Paul_Snyder's picture

(post #109092, reply #5 of 6)

Here's how I would do the finish you're describing. Apply one coat of the oil base finish. Let it dry and sand lightly to remove the dust nibs - I use 3M sanding sponges but 220 or 320 sandpaper will work fine. Apply the colored coat(s) of shellac. Follow with 2-3 coats of the varnish.

As long as the powdered dyes dissolve okay in the alcohol, I wouldn't worry about grinding them finer. You may want to strain the dye after mixing to remove any undissolved "chunks" of the dye.

Are you planning to apply the color coat(s)to the maple & cherry? There's no "right" or "wrong" approach, just a consideration in the final appearance. For greatest contrast between the two woods, you may not want to "color" the maple.

Do some tests on scraps to make sure you like the look of the finish. The larger the "scrap," the better idea how the finish will look on a large surface. I will sometimes try the finish on a 2'-3' section of a board if it looks good on a smaller section. Sometimes a finish that looks good on a 6" square won't look so good on a larger area. If you don't like something about the look of the finish, then you can change or re-arrange the steps to get a different look.

Your plan for the drawers sounds good.




Paul

F'burg, VA

Paul
website

AlanTurner's picture

(post #109092, reply #6 of 6)

Thanks so much for the help.  I am gluing up the drawers now, which is about the final step on them.  The legs are built but not fitted.  I may be only about 1 week away from completing the base unit.  The top should go much quicker.  No drawers, much less five of them.  Then, of course, on to the finishing.  I am shooting for Christmas; began with the wood purchase on July 3 (8 planks of 5/4 cherry, a flitch, 12' long, 24 - 28" wide -- what a find).  This is quick for me; thought it would take closer to a year.


Edited 11/4/2002 7:53:04 AM ET by s4s