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to all the Wood buffs out there,


I do have a question concerning staining Wood.


Take a dice of wood, (not that I want to make dices, it's just for the sake on an example), and you have six sides. Four sides run with the grain, 2 sides are grain-end.

Now you sand it to perfect smothness. All six sides feel perfect and alike.

Now you stain the dice.

The effect is, that, because the grain-end side is more open, These two sides absorb more stain (and deeper) than the other four sides.

The result is that you have 2 sides in a darker colour than the other 4.


How do you avoid this? How do you get 6 equal coloured sides?


Any ideas?


best regards




current workshop content:


L'Artesien, scratch

Le Rivoli, scratch


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How do you avoid this? How do you get 6 equal coloured sides?



You can't on a single "dice" for the very reasons you mentioned.


The only way I can think of getting an even color on all six sides is by laminating the end grains with pieces of the same timber. This poses a small problem, and it depends a lot on your woodworking skills, but the two laminates would need to be recessed into the block with 45 degree angle rebates so that the edge joints don't show. You would need to use a router or mill to do it properly.


:cheers:  Danny

Cheers, Danny

Current Build :    Forced Retirement from Modelling due to Health Issues

Build Logs :   Norfolk Sloop  HMS Vulture - (TFFM)  HMS Vulture Cross-section  18 foot Cutter    Concord Stagecoach   18th Century Longboat in a BOTTLE 

CARD Model Build Logs :   Mosel   Sydney Opera House (Schreiber-Bogen)   WWII Mk. IX Spitfire (Halinski)  Rolls Royce Merlin Engine  Cape Byron Lighthouse (HMV)       Stug 40 (Halinski)    Yamaha MT-01   Yamaha YA-1  HMS Hood (Halinski)  Bismarck (GPM)  IJN Amatsukaze 1940 Destroyer (Halinski)   HMVS Cerberus   Mi24D Hind (Halinski)  Bulgar Steam Locomotive - (ModelikTanker and Beer Wagons (Modelik)  Flat Bed Wagon (Modelik)  Peterbuilt Semi Trailer  Fender Guitar  

Restorations for Others :  King of the Mississippi  HMS Victory
Gallery : Norfolk Sloop,   HMAT Supply,   HMS Bounty,   HMS Victory,   Charles W. Morgan,   18' Cutter for HMS Vulture,   HMS Vulture,  HMS Vulture Cross-section,             18th Century Longboat in a Bottle 

Other Previous Builds : Le Mirage, Norske Love, King of the Mississippi

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well, an idea, yes.

But, as I said, the dice is just an example.


More specific:


If I want to stain a carved threedimensional figure. How do I get an even tone on the whole figure without ending with darker spots here and there?



current workshop content:


L'Artesien, scratch

Le Rivoli, scratch


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Wood workers who make cabinetry have the same problem.

 When I built my kitchen cabinets I was told and successfully did the following.

 You seal only the end grain of the board. They make sealers that will seal the wood. Soak in the end grain so that stain will be even.

 Usimg a rag or brush, only apply enough of the sealer to do just that, seal.Now stain the whole plank.

  I would suggest trying on scraps of the type of wood you are using until you get an even consistency of the stain. Apply a coat of sealer, not much, and then stain all sides and see the effect. If not happy with this try another sample and add a smaller second coat and try staining again.

 I know when I did hard maple, one coat wiped with a damp rag did the trick


Edited by DaveF
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Do what Dave said.


I go one step further and use a gel stain which does not really get absorbed into the wood as much as a liquid stain.  

Almost like putting a layer of paint on and it is much easier to control.



If someone says something can't be done, it only means they can't do it.


Building:Shipyard - HMS Mercury card madel


Completed Builds:

Wood Models; AL Bluenose II 1989, Corel Toulonnaise 1995, Corel Flying Fish 2000, AL Scottish Maid 2005,

Sergal President 2010, Mamoli Beagle 2011, Corel Eagle 2013, Mamoli Constitution Cross-section 2014, Victory Cross-section 1/98 by Corel 2015, Occre San Francisco Cable Car 2018, Model Shipways Armed Long Boat 2021

Card Models

Christmas Train by PaperReplika 2012, Yamaha DSC11 Motorcycle 2013, Canon EOS 5D Mark II 2014, WWII Tiger I Tank by Paper-Replika 2014, Wrebbit Mercedes-Benz 500K Roadster 2014, Central Pacific no. 60 Jupiter card model 2015, Mirage III 1/30 converted to 1/33 card model 2017, TKpapercraft 1912 Mercer 2021


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Gel stain is a good bet for a multidimensional piece of work like a carving because it's hard to seal the right spots.  Gel stains also are usually water based and easy to work with.




Current: Sergal Sovereign of the Seas

Previous builds:  AL Swift, AL King of the Mississippi, Mamoli Roter Lowe, Amati Chinese Junk, Caesar, Mamoli USS Constitution, Mantua HMS Victory, Panart San Felipe, Mantua Sergal Soleil Royal

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