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Aniline Dyes, Water based, Baltic Birch

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  • Aniline Dyes, Water based, Baltic Birch

    {FYI: I am going to cross post this on other, general woodwork forums also}

    I am trying to add color to a scroll saw project. The wood is Baltic Birch plywood, and I would like to stain it dark with a hint of red. Due to the fretwork nature of the project, I can only reasonably use the "dip" method of stain and finish applications. I am planning on using an oil based finish, but I am willing to be talked out of that. Dip method applying the finish is firm.

    For many reasons, I don't like the results of pre-made Danish Oil stains, nor varnish based stains commonly purchased in Home Improvement stores.

    Many years ago, I messed around with Aniline Dyes (water based), and remember getting great results with deep color on a large project. However, I cannot remember where I got the dyes.

    A quick search of the Web, and I noticed a lack of suppliers of the power form aniline dyes so I can make up my own dyes. Lee Valley seemed to have their own brand of powders which I know I have not tried.

    So questions:
    Does any one still use Aniline dyes?
    Does any one use Aniline dyes on BB plywood?
    Where, on the www do you recommend as a supplier?

    Thanks in Advance

  • #2

    Any water base dyes are going to raise the grain. I have used the rit dyes on occasion and also have mixed them with denature alcohol and gotten good results. You can get analine dyes from Woodcraft.
    John T.


    • #3
      I've had very good results on Baltic or Finnish birch with Transfast dyes, water-based dyes that come in powder form. There is also a line from the same company called TransTint that comes in concentrated liquid form that you mix with either water or alcohol -- the latter will not raise the grain. I haven't tried the TransTint, except in sample doses.

      Woodcraft carries both, but it seems they only carry the "woody" colors of the TransTint, though bright colors are also available. Homestead Finishing, the maker or distributor of these dyes as well as Behlen and other lines, has a web site, but you can't order -- you can download a catalog or an order form and mail or fax it in, or you can call to order. I haven't explored it much, but there seems to be a huge wealth of infor mation on Homestead's site.


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