Results 1 to 5 of 5

Thread: An Experiment with Wood Dye

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Parker County, Texas
    Posts
    1,488

    An Experiment with Wood Dye

    I finished this up yesterday just in time before the monsoons started again. I did this in several stages. After sanding the bowl to 400, that is what the bottle of dyes specify, I dyed the base and the rim with thinned down red. After that dried good then I did the whole bowl with thinned down blue. The dye I got is alcohol based so I used DNA to do the thinning. Also seems to be the only thing that will get the dye off of your hands seeing I'm not smart enough to have bought some plastic gloves. On the shopping list, just didn't think about them at first. After the blue dye dried I lightly sanded everything down trying to get a faded look from the red to the blue, or vice versa. I wanted a worn and rustic look to it. I think I accomplished it but would appreciate some comments from anyone who has played with dyes before. Or, comments from those who haven't. After the monsoons pass, which apparently is going to be a week off I will play with the dye some more after I get a few more stock items turned.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    ABQ NM
    Posts
    30,002
    You're off to a good start, Dave. One thing about dye is it will highlight any sanding scratches and tool marks, so you have to be very diligent about sanding them all away before applying the dye. (That's one reason I often dye only the outside of a bowl.) I'm seeing quite a few concentric marks on the inside of this piece...not sure if they're from tools or sandpaper. I suspect they may be spots where the wood has been burnished with the heel of the bowl gouge. When you sand, are you doing it with the lathe running? Are you using a power sander or doing it by hand? I've found for me the best way to get rid of tool/sanding circles is to use a power sander (I have a 2" ROS) with the lathe turned off.

    One tip you can use for fading the dye is to use DNA on a clean rag. You can wipe off a fair amount of dye that way. It also works for blending colors.

    I can also relate about the blue hands. And I've also learned that even if you're wearing gloves, don't brush your long hair out of your eyes, especially if the hair's blond or gray, lol.

    Here's one of my favorite dye jobs. I probably spent more time sanding just the inside of the bowl than I did turning and sanding the rest of it. The dye on the outside was applied with a mini HVLP spray gun. (I've also used an airbrush for similar fades on smaller pieces. This one is about 13" or 14" in diameter, so the spray gun made more sense.)

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Bowl 092 - 03  800.jpg 
Views:	14 
Size:	24.2 KB 
ID:	95359 Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Bowl 092 - 07  800.jpg 
Views:	12 
Size:	25.3 KB 
ID:	95360
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Parker County, Texas
    Posts
    1,488
    Thanks for the tips, Vaughn. I do both hand and power sanding. Lots of times I brush on some naptha and that will show me stuff on the wood that I might not see otherwise, but for some reason, I am out of it. Another item to get more of. Naptha is not supposed to leave any residues. I think the marks are from the gouges this time. Ain't swearing to it, though. I generally power sand the lower grits and hand sand the upper. Lots of times I will feel the marks while the lathe is running but didn't this time so there are some. And, yeah. The dye really makes them stand out. I forgot to put the dimensions on the earlier post. It's 11 1/4" diameter, 3 1/4" high and 2 1/4" deep. If I have a chance after the monsoons, I will probably redo the sanding on it. My shop is an open in the front 3 car garage with a metal roof. Not good to work in while thunderstorms are hammering you. But, it's what I gots so it's what I uses. That is a very nice bowl, by the way.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    ABQ NM
    Posts
    30,002
    If it's any consolation, I've had my fair share of bowls I had to re-sand after I started putting finish on them. Or I'll get down to 400 grit, only to discover some 120 grit scratches that still need to come out.

    I think you'll have fun experimenting with the dyes. For me, it adds another dimension to woodturning, especially on wood like curly maple, where the dye can really make the figure stand out.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Parker County, Texas
    Posts
    1,488
    Well, as the old saying goes keep on going until you can't go no more. My compressor, though decent size, won't run much in the way of tools. So, I'm stuck with hand sanding and regular power sanding, which I do in 2" and 3" mainly. I figure I am better off working with small brushes of one nature or the other. And, of course rags and such. I bought some water color brushes to start with of different angles as well as different stiffness for a better word. I know I need to get better ones, so that will be a bit more research. And, trial and error. I don't think I am ready to step up to the spraying at this point. But you are right. It's fun and another dimension that I have not explored until now. Thought about it, but that's it until now. Never know where I will go with it from here. Don't you just love it when you find goofs in sanding or whatever. I went out this afternoon to look at the bowl. Definite rings there, but weird that I can't feel them. I dunno. Won't hurt to sand and do a bit of more dye work for the practice if nothing else.

Similar Threads

  1. Sealing of Wood - Experiment
    By Dan Mosley in forum General Woodturning Q&A
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 06-27-2014, 03:39 AM
  2. Lil experiment
    By Jim Burr in forum The Cook Shack
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 08-19-2013, 01:37 PM
  3. An experiment.
    By Pete MoncrieffJury in forum Lathe Project Showcase
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 10-28-2010, 11:18 AM
  4. Wood science experiment
    By Bruce Page in forum General Woodworking Q&A
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 08-25-2007, 03:41 PM
  5. An Experiment............
    By Stuart Ablett in forum Lathe Project Showcase
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 02-20-2007, 07:37 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •