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I just bought 2 nice pine muskoka chairs but they are unfinished. wanted to finsh them nice for the wife today (well start today depending on coats).

I know nothing about finishing wood. She'd like to have it done today but I'd like to have it done for good so if I have to put on 3-4 coats thats fine. I'd guess 2 coats of stain and then 2 clear coat?

Set me straight. What do I use and how? A Lee Valley just opened up across from the home depot and there is a Home Hardware around the corner from me. Was going to head to depot but I figured lee valley would have better shit.
 

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I know *just* enough to suggest that you go to Lee Valley for advice as well as products. I once did a deck with a very expensive 3-part staining system promoted by Home Depot as its longest-lasting solution for exterior wood. Within two years it was peeling.
 

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I know *just* enough to suggest that you go to Lee Valley for advice as well as products. I once did a deck with a very expensive 3-part staining system promoted by Home Depot as its longest-lasting solution for exterior wood. Within two years it was peeling.
maybe you did it wrong?
 

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I'm able to read and follow short paragraphs of instructions. Maybe it was a shit product being promoted by people who didn't have much experience with it?
blaming others is a very natural thing to do when faced with your own limited abilities
 

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@Moosehead I've only built and stained pine for indoor use and have had good luck with water based tinted stains. I think making sure things are clean and sanded with multiple light stain applications should get you good results. I would look into oil based products possibly, may help with longevity for outdoor use.
 

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A couple of years ago, I made a couple of deck chairs out of Cedar. I was looking for something good to put on them and ended up using a Minwax product. Boy did they look great but didn't stand up so well so I put another coat of Minwax on them and again, they only lasted about a year or so. I decided to talk to someone about any new products that might be out there. I mentioned the product I was using didn't stand up so well. A light finally went on when the girl in the paint dept said "that's for indoor use". Let us know what you find out in your search as I'd like to do them again. I sometimes wonder if anything will stand up well on items that are sitting in direct sunlight all day long and that includes decks.
 

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Never found any difference in longevity between oil and water based products outside. They all suck to some degree.
I'm struggling with this right now,... just picked up stain to refinish the deck. I wanted oil based but gave up on that and just picked a middle of the road product in the wife's choice of colour. I'm hoping the application process buys me some years as I'm going to sponge it on by hand rather than a roller and since I've planed down all the boards I hope it helps with it adhering to the clean surface.
 

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I'm struggling with this right now,... just picked up stain to refinish the deck. I wanted oil based but gave up on that and just picked a middle of the road product in the wife's choice of colour. I'm hoping the application process buys me some years as I'm going to sponge it on by hand rather than a roller and since I've planed down all the boards I hope it helps with it adhering to the clean surface.
I’ve been told that maximum life expectancy for water based deck stain is 2 years.
Recoat requires stripping, either chemically or physically (sanding).

Nathan
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Went to Lee Valley and the guy wasnt sure so we read every label. I wanted to get a tung oil so I could do guitars with it but ended up going with General Exterior 450 exterior not positive it was poly though. I remember the guy saying something about it being water based which is another reason why I wanted to go with the tung oil. Oil based product should by nature repel water better in my mind.

Now the wife wanted it slightly darker than a natural finish so as I needed to go to Depot after I did and Thompsons had a tinted sealer but I was done spending money on stuff so I passed. It was a gallon jug too which was waaay more than I needed. Havent done the job yet (still sanding) but I'll post up some pics when they are done.

Should I sand between coats?
 

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I know *just* enough to suggest that you go to Lee Valley for advice as well as products. I once did a deck with a very expensive 3-part staining system promoted by Home Depot as its longest-lasting solution for exterior wood. Within two years it was peeling.
The trick is to be able to convene a group of 3-4 old guys in aprons at Lee Valley. (Not cross-dressers, but older staff) That will usually get you a very serviceable range of advice and useful ideas.
 

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Went to Lee Valley and the guy wasnt sure so we read every label.<snip>
Sorry that your experience wasn't any better than dealing with Lowes / Depot wage earners. My wife loves their gardening stuff so I end up at Lee Valley several times per year and usually bring any wood-related projects to them for advice. I don't know a lot myself, but have usually felt that their advice was good.
 

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Went to Lee Valley and the guy wasnt sure so we read every label. I wanted to get a tung oil so I could do guitars with it but ended up going with General Exterior 450 exterior not positive it was poly though. I remember the guy saying something about it being water based which is another reason why I wanted to go with the tung oil. Oil based product should by nature repel water better in my mind.

Now the wife wanted it slightly darker than a natural finish so as I needed to go to Depot after I did and Thompsons had a tinted sealer but I was done spending money on stuff so I passed. It was a gallon jug too which was waaay more than I needed. Havent done the job yet (still sanding) but I'll post up some pics when they are done.

Should I sand between coats?
If the can says to yes.

I think it says to sand between coats lightly and then clean up the dust.

All the old oil based stuff was recently taken off the market (within the last 2, 3 years) and then all the companies came out with a water based line.
It was all shite so they all came out with new stuff.

Its very difficult to stay current, I'm a custom carpenter/woodworking and I have no clue about 90% of the finishes out there.
Hell, the guys at the lumber store have trouble staying aware of the current offerings.
I have a few products that I know how to use and have had good luck with and I use those exclusively.

Nathan
 

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Why didn't you buy the tung oil from Lee Valley? That shit is awesome. If you wanted darker you could have used a light stain first or even a brown or red shellac. Shellac on top of tung oil looks amazing . If you want depth you could alternate shellac and tung oil. But shellac dries in 10 minutes, the tung oil takes a week.

This is a few coats of red shellac on top of one coat of tung oil before and after



 
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