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August 30, 2005

Cheapest Wood Stain

If you ever want to create your own aged-looking barnboard out of new lumber, here's an old farmer's secret for a permanent, non-toxic and dirt-cheap stain.  (See Mag demonstrate making barnboard by visiting CTV's Canada AM - then click on their ToolGirl link)

  1. Pour a few cups of vinegar into a jar.
  2. Add a handful of rusty nails or steel wool.
  3. Put the lid on the jar.
  4. Wait a few days. 

Brush stain onto lumber and give it a few minutes to interact with the tannins in the wood.  The more tannin (cedar has a lot of tannin, for example), the deeper the hue of the stain.  Cedar goes dark gray, whereas pine turns dark brown.  I haven't tried it on hardwood yet but I'm told that oak turns black.  I'll find out and post photos.



gary ezma' cherry

OOh! OOh! OOh ! This one is awsommmmeee! I luv stuff to look natural and rustic. I'm definately going to try this one, and I'm almost certain that within these pages I can find a project that may not be exactly up to my skill levels, but I could wing it. I'd like something like a rocking chair with a dowl type frame, and a rope mesh instead of hard wood for me bum to rest on. We have a pond out back, and a rocker might be able to negotiate the incline down to the water better than the average chair. If anybody has any idea's that a novice might be able to tackle drop me a line at garyfish340@yahoo.com, in exchange I give you this additional staining idea. Get a coffee can and put some oil in it. ( could be enviromentally safe, good ol' cooking oil ) Take a paint brush, and make believe you're painting you're wood, than take a propain tourch, and run it across the oily surface. It takes some practice, but eventually you'll notice the wood grains come up darker, highlighted if you will. Please be very careful I've given instructions to people before, with out warning them of the dangers. Remember the famous quote from " Young Frankenstien " " Fire is our friend." and for God sakes never, ever, ever, put a mint Mento's, in a Bottle of diet Coke, unless you can spare a weekend to scrub ceiling, and walls, and floors, furniture, you get the point. So all you 40 somethings feel you've been repressed, I do not want you to go out side, with your rain gear of course, and drop aproximately 4 mint mento's ( Mint ) into an open bottle of diet coke ( Coke Only ) It would be a very immature, boyish, silly thing to do. But really be careful when you work on your projects. But what do I know I'm just a squater... Ezma'...

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Mag's Books

  • : We're All In This Together

    We're All In This Together
    Based on four years of interviews with Steve Smith, Mag's unconventional biography reveals the personal stories, sorrows and joys that continue to inspire the man behind the Red Green legacy.

  • : How Hard Can It Be?

    How Hard Can It Be?
    Mag's quirky and entertaining book of home improvement projects for beginners.

Nota Bene

  • It’s never too late to be who you might have been. - George Eliot (1819-1880)
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