mahogany color...brown vs red/orange

jim232777

Active member
Messages
38
Hi all,
So I'm planning on a mahogany thinline with swamp ash top, paired with a roasted maple neck/rosewood fretboard.  Don't have a good place to spray, and I'm a beginner anyway, so was planning on Tru Oil or similar on the body (possibly leave neck completely unfinished, or a light oil finish).  I want the mahogany to be more on the brown side, and searching the gallery for mahogany I find several designated Tru Oil, clear, etc.  Many are brown like I like, but a few are distinctly reddish.  Is this something controled by the finish, or did the piece of wood determine it?  A reddish tinted darker brown would be fine, but don't want the light, almost orange color of some mahogany finishes.

Any thoughts are appreciated.
 

Tonar8352

Senior member
Messages
2,195
The wood has a lot to say about that and the best way to tell how it will go is to wet it down with some benzene or zippo lighter fluid (same thing) and you will see how the wood will look with a natural clear finish. There is no residue left by the benzene and the wood grain wont swell like it would if you use water.
 

jim232777

Active member
Messages
38
Hmm.  Sounds like a roll of the dice.  So hit it with the Zippo fluid, and if it's not dark enough I have to use some stain before the oil?
 

Tonar8352

Senior member
Messages
2,195
Yes you will need to use stain or dye. You might look at Old Master gel stain, it's pretty easy to work with and should work under your top coats. 
 

jim232777

Active member
Messages
38
Had to search gel stain.  Some pages suggested it might hide grain, and I would rather accentuate the grain.  I’ve used conventional solvent stain on furniture so that’s what I was expecting.  I could do that, although something water-based would be nice for the odor aspect.  Can you do oil on top of water based if you let it dry long enough?  Be nice if there were a wiki or something that listed compatibilities.  :)

I’m wondering...are Wudtone kits oil, similar to Tru Oil or boiled linseed (just with dyes/pigments as needed)?  The application instructions make it sound that way.  If so, I might be able to get a kit and stain only the back, then use the clear to cover the whole body.

Thanks!
 

Tonar8352

Senior member
Messages
2,195
I have no experience with the product you mention. I suggest you try your finishing schedule on a piece of scrap wood and make sure it works.   
 
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