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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What the hell is going on here....I am working in my woodshop...right????


Well, yes...yes I am.


I am working on a kitchen reface. Made the doors out of Sapelle' with a clear coat. Got all the doors to look pretty similar in color. Now I had to make some 1/4" skins out of plywood for the ends and the island. I made the 2 upper skins first. Ironed on the edging, sanded and put a coat of lacquer on it. Holy crap, it is about 3 shades darker than the doors. Arrrrg.:shutup:

I still needed to do the island and I didn't have the plywood in stock. So I got some and hoped it would be lighter. Nope. Plan B. Had to think of plan B. Talked it over with another wood working buddy and he mentioned Wood Bleach. Neither of us had ever used it. I looked into it and it seemed the only way to go right now.

I was going to go to WoodCraft and get some, but on the way I stopped at my local hardware store to see if I could luck out. Well lucky me. They had 2 pint kits. I got one along with a bucket and a sponge.

I went to the shop and mixed 1 oz of part A with 1 oz of part B as directed and put it on a test pc of plywood, let it sit for a bit and then put it in front of a fan to dry it. It worked, holy crap did it work. It was now waaaay to light.

So I tried a few formulas and finally settled on 1:1:8 (part A : part B : water)
This got me within a half shade of the door and was almost perfect match for my corner covers for the island. Mixed up a large batch and did the skins. Gonna let them dry tonight and clear coat them tomorrow.

So ironing and bleaching in a wood shop. What a trip.:party:
 

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Curmudgeon
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Better thee than me. :thumbsup:
I'm no good at that alchemy stuff. :no::sad:
 

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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Pure guesstimation all the way for me. I had never done bleaching before. Zero experience besides hearing a few stories over on WoodWeb. It took me 4 tries to get it. Funny thing is they said on the package mix nothing else with parts A&B. Well too bad. They said to wet the board with water before applying the bleach, so I figured I could add water, my guess worked.

I am always playing with colors and thinners and whatever to get that color match just right.
 

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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I had shown them a few doors that I had for displays. Natural Cherry, Quarter Sawn White Oak, painted (white) and a stained Sapelle' door. When he saw the Sapelle' he fell in love with the graining. Similar to Mahogany but the grain is very pronounced. But it was to dark for his wife. So I made another and clear coated it. The wife thought it was still to dark, but somehow he convinced her to accept the door. I was very impressed, usually the wife has the final word. As we all know as men, that we have to live with them. :laughing:
 

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chief pencil holder
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Post a pic of the finished product I am curious as to what it looks like. Why was the ply so dark? Is just because it is so thin and the glue was showing through? Or weird absorbshun?
 

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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
When I get the job finished there will be pics. If I remember maybe I'll take a shot of one of the doors tomorrow.

Just like any wood, it has variations. Most of the solid wood lot I got (190 bd ft) was close in color. I got two board that were substantially lighter and were not usable in this job. It forced me to use some stock from a previous lot I had. That wood was for moldings and it ended up close enough in color to the current lot that I had.

I don't know what was with the plywood. Obviously it was from a completely different lot and probably a different forest and possible from a different country. I don't know where the solid wood came from nor do I know where the veneer flitches came from. All I know is that the plywood was much darker than the solid wood. I was just glad that I tried the bleaching.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
I only did one bleaching operation. The grain raise was very minimal. Even with the amount of water I added, I was pleased and a quick sanding with 150 grit took care of it.

This is the product, but I was able to get it in a 32 oz kit for $14
 

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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Wood bleach has been around for centuries. It is usually Oxilac Acid.

I don't know if this mix I am using is Oxalic Acid or something else. The package doesn't say what's in it.

Looked into it more and found the ingredients

component “A” (hydrogen peroxide) and component “B” (sodium hydroxide solution)
 

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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
That is what I went to look for originally. Then he said he found a box of wood bleach - Bingo.
 

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Maker of fine kindling
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This "Mahogany" job is a combination of Sapeli and African Mahogany.

For the life of me I can't remember what the sheet stock is, but the solid stock is the other.

Matching color from sheet goods to solid in "mahogany" is near impossible these days. This is not perfect either, but as close as can be expected. IMO

I went to the lumber yard and spent a couple hours selecting the two that looked the closest in color. I find the grain pattern to be near identical. Just get the color right.

Furniture Cupboard Wood stain Cabinetry Room

Furniture Cupboard Cabinetry Room Wood stain
 

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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
To mee it looks like you have Sapelle' solid and Mahogany panels. The grain pattern on the upper left door is somthing that doesn't look typical in Sapelle'.

Have you done much bleaching Gus, or was that your first attempt at it?
 

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Maker of fine kindling
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One cup in a large load of whites.
Put the bleach in first, never last.
That sums up my bleaching seminar.

My wife is handy with bleach. She can turn any one into a true blond.
 

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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Oh ya....Mr outsource. I forgot who I was talking to.:rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I did the skins last night and went in this morning and they looked pretty good. I think they went a tad too far, but not much. I had the test pc I did and I compared it to that and they looked dead on. Which makes me believe that the bleaching effect was still happening under the lacquer.

I added a cordovon toner coat, very very light to put a slight red hue back to it. Still not perfect but really close. It matches the corner pcs well. One of the problems seems to be that the solid wood has a lot of depth and the plywood doesn't.

Not to much I can do about that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
OK, here are a few pics of the bleach samples that I did.



All the formulas are listed as a ratio of part A : part B : water

Starting from the top

On the left is the plywood with 2 coats of lacquer on the right is a full strength bleach 1:1:0

2nd down is right: > 1 coat of lacquer left 1:1:16

3rd down is right: > 1 coat of lacquer left 1:1:8

4th down is right: > 1 coat of lacquer left 1:1:6

the 3rd one is what I went with. It lost some of the redness of the wood and I toned it, still a bit yellower than the doors but matches the corner pcs that will be resting on top of the plywood.


Here is a picture of a door, I had 22 doors to make (not all this size)



The wood has nice depth and Chatoyance, which describes the shimmeriness of the wood when you are looking at it from different directions. The wood will actually look like it has changed colors, significantly when the pcs are oriented and viewed 90 degrees from each other. Pretty neat.
 
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