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Made a HUGE mistake with stain - how to fix???

Okay, so I did a dumb thing - I did not have time to sand down a pedestal table and went ahead and applied Minwax Red Mahogany stain to it - about 2-3 coats. I know I should have sanded it first, but I have done this kind of half-a$$ job before on tables and never had an issue - it always eventually dried but usually within 24 hours or so. Well, it's been over 24 hours now with 3 fans and an air conditioner blowing on top of the stain and it is still tacky. 


Now, I read in another post that cool air slows down the drying time? Is this true? It has never been my experience before. Should I take a hair dryer and run hot air over the stain to dry it? 


I know most of your advice will probably be to strip it and start over, but a) I don't have the time b) I don't have the money for additional materials and c) the stain actually came out gorgeous with no streaks at all - it just needs to dry. How can I make this happen quickly, as it is sitting in my living room and my poor cats have been locked in a bedroom for over a day now.




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Posted 2013-10-10T12:09:47+0000  by scoochamenz scoochamenz

What a day you're having scoochamenz!


In the future, when you want to stain with minimal prep, use Varathane Stain and Poly or Minwax Polyshades.


These products contain both stain and polyurethane, and are designed to be used as a top coat over existing finishes.


The label on these products does ask you to buff sand with 220-grit or 000 steel wool ... just enough to break the gloss.


Wipe off the sanding dust with a dry terry towel (no solvents) and use a natural bristle brush to smooth-on a coat using long, flowing strokes.


After six-hours, buff sand again and apply a second coat.


Six-hours drying time later and you're done!



The stain you used is a penetrating sealer ... and must absorb into the wood to do its job.


When these products sit on the surface, they become very sticky and may remain that way for a very long time.


You may simply choose to keep your cats locked in the bedroom and wait, and wait, and wait until the surface eventually dries.


Or, you may choose to use Minwax Furniture Refinisher and steel wool to remove that tacky stain.


Minwax Furniture Refinisher.jpg


Once removed, refinishing will be much easier with the stain and polyurethane products mentioned above.

Posted 2013-10-10T13:03:19+0000  by Pat_HD_ATL





To answer your question: yes, cool and damp slows down drying. Warm, non-humid air speeds it up. Moving air from a fan tends to speed it up, however, you aften end up blowing  crud into your work.


If you can move the piece out into the sunlight, the radiant heat from the sun will dramatically speed up dryng.. Of course, out in the open air there is also the possiblity of contamination from dust or a bird flying by. If you happen to have an infra-red bulb, the radiant heat from it work well too, just don't get it too close!


Just an ol' painting contractor.

Posted 2013-10-11T18:05:36+0000  by ordjen
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