Stain Won't Penetrate Wood? Read This

A furniture surface will inevitably become scuffed, scratched or dirty over time. Many people end up trying to redo the surface by applying a stain so that the flaws are not visible and the item looks like new.

However, many people who try to apply a stain to wooden furniture or other items find that the stain doesn't penetrate.


It can be frustrating, and a waste of time and material, when you apply the stain in several layers and it does not penetrate the wood. It's important to understand the reasons why this is occurring so that you can take steps towards fixing it.

Potential Causes

Some of the reasons for staining related problems are listed below:

  • the pores in the wood are closed 
  • the wooden surface has been sealed due to a previous treatment with a wax, finishes, coatings, and so the stain is not being absorbed
  • the wood has been sanded to the veneer layer which does not absorb the stain
  • the existing oil-based stain or coating is displacing the water-based stain, which is not being absorbed

Stain Penetration Solutions

Have a look at this video on how to apply stain to wood properly:

Most people will spend some time applying stains to the surface before they realize that the stain is not penetrating. The best way to fix the problem is to check the surface on which the stain is applied. If the surface is sealed or has some kind of wax or other coating, it is advisable to use sandpaper to remove the top layer of the surface which is coated.

It doesn't matter if you've previously used power tools to build a wooden structure, although there are recommendations.

With that said, care should be taken while stripping the top layer of the wood to ensure that the veneer layer (which doesn't absorb stain) is not reached.

Some people recommend using a toner or lacquer while applying the stain to the surface so that it will adhere to the surface more. Another option is to use a water-based stain which will be absorbed by the wood better than an oil-based stain.

Final Thoughts

A little bit of investigation will go a long way in troubleshooting why your stain won't penetrate wood. Above I've discussed the common culprits.

Still having an issue? Leave a comment below and let me know about it.

Some Tips On How To Stain Wood In Cold Weather

Just like the cold weather in the winter makes us wear sweaters for a longer period as we look for warmth, in the same way staining wood in cold weather can take a longer amount of time.


Since life must continue during the winter time, the big question remains: can you stain wood in cold weather?

The answer is a definite yes.

Though it works, it comes with some challenges that may give a different experience if you are used to warm weather.

It calls for patience during the whole process, as you must wait out time intervals between coats. When you urgently need to use the wood, it calls for other improvised ways that will help increase the rate at which the drying will take place.

To avoid the effects of stains when they are wet, you have to enhance and improvise ways of creating a warm environment. Some tips that will make the process very easy for you during cold weather include:

1. Create an artificial warm room.

Even through the whole environment may look cool, life should not stop. You can accelerate the drying process by ensuring your normal wood staining is done in a warm room.

Set a room aside and ensure the air inside is dry and warm; this creates an atmosphere that makes the stain dry faster.

2. Increase the temperature of the wood and the stain.

You can make work easier by increasing the temperature of the wood before you apply the stain on it. The increase in temperature will counter the temperature of the surroundings, quickening the drying process.

3. Use an accelerator or a drier.

You can blow the wood once you apply the first coat to ensure evaporation is accelerated. This will make the stain dry more quickly, making it possible to apply a new coat and finish the staining within a relatively short time period in cold weather.

These tips should make it relatively simple for you to stain in cold weather.

For more helpful tips related to woodworking and home improvement, visit Carve Your Creation. Check out this article on finishing oak plywood.

Good luck!

How To Make A Stylish Wooden Side Table - Wood Project

Want to make a stylish wooden side table from wood logs? This video tutorial shows you how. I thought this was a nice little project and I wanted to share it.

Here's part 1:

And here's part 2:


What Is Pink Wood?

If you’re considering home construction or renovation, you may have come across the term "pink wood". You might be wondering: what is pink wood?


Notwithstanding using a CNC router that isn't expensive to achieve precise cuts for materials, this building material is actually a coating that’s designed to make construction materials more resilient to protect homes.

Why pink wood?

PinkWood is a company that’s based in Calgary, Canada and produces I-joists which are coated in a pink material.

The company also produces various other wood products that are protected by a coating known as PinkShield. The coating is designed to resist mold, fire, and moisture.

Many people wonder why the colour added to the coating is pink. The company PinkWood is a proud supporter of the Breast Cancer Foundation in Canada and wanted their products to reflect their support. They are also known for their charitable efforts and donate 20 cents of every gallon of their PinkShield products which they sell.

How did it develop?

PinkWood has a company facility located in Calgary that worked for two years to develop this coating material. Their products are primarily purchased in Western Canada but they can also be found in other countries and are starting to expand.

Marketed by the company Taiga Building Products, a new plant is underway and will have a large capacity to meet the growing demand. The new plant is anticipated to have the capacity of up to 60 million linear feet.

Since most of their products are used for construction of homes, their president wanted to develop a product that would make homes safer and longer-lasting.

This innovative product is used by some of the top contractors including Mike Holmes, the most trusted contractor in Canada. Holmes has even said that PinkWood should be minimum code for homes.

Other Factors


It’s important to note that using PinkWood in a home is going to come at a higher cost than standard construction materials.

If you choose to use I-Joists in your construction, you’re going to pay about 20% more than untreated wood. However, the benefits of fire-retardant materials that are also resistant to mold and moisture make the extra cost well worth it for many people.

As the company continues to grow, expect to see PinkWood in more newer homes.

Any questions or comments? Comment below!

Building A Pinewood Derby Car - Step-By-Step Instructions

A well-built derby car will slide down the track faster due to the car’s shape and weight.

Your Cub Scout will be proud to place his car on the track when he’s had a hand in making it and knowing it will fly when the starting gate is opened. Be sure to let him have a hand in the assembly, as this will instill even more pride in his final accomplishments.


Step 1:

Saw a block of pinewood to 5 inches long. Most car kits will come with a pre-cut block of wood. The dimensions should be 5 inches long, nearly 2 inches wide and 3/4 inch high.

Draw a line down the side of the wood block. Cut along the line using a handsaw. This will create a wedge when it's cut. The point will be the nose of the car.

Step 2:

Chisel out a hollow area in the underside of the piece of wood. Place the metal weights inside the hollow area. Chisel away at the area until the weights fit into the hollow area snugly. You can also learn how to get a professional cut by reading up on the function of a wood router.

Once a good fit is established, remove the weights and add glue to the area. Replace the weights.

Step 3:

Sand the entire body of the car until you achieve a smooth finish, keeping the angle of the body present.

Step 4:

Paint the car using either model car paints (1) or spray paint. This is easiest.

For a more detailed paint finish, including designs and various colors, use the model paints.

Step 5:

Add the wheels by placing the nail into the wheel base. If you are using a pinewood car kit, the wheels and nails will be included. If not, you may purchase these at any hobby store.

Push the nails into the pre-made slots on the bottom of the car. Use a hammer to force them in entirely if they will not move into place.

Gently glue the area of the nail and wood, paying special attention not to get any glue on the wheel itself.

Step 6:

Pour powdered graphite into the wheel base and spin the wheels. This will allow the wheels to spin more easily and help the car gain speed as it goes down the track.

Last Words

So there you have it: a well-built derby car (2) ready to provide hours upon hours of fun for kids and adults alike.

Any questions about this step-by-step guide? Leave a comment!

All About Finishing Oak Plywood

Once your oak furniture is built, it's time to move on to finishing.

Finishing makes oak look nice, improves its durability, and also protects it from spills, dust and other wear-and-tear processes.


There are many oak plywood finishing options available to you:

Green Finishes

Beeswax and linseed oil falls in this category. These are the most environment-friendly options available for finishing oak plywood.


Varnish is suitable for exterior and interior use. It is available as colored or transparent, preservative or decorative finish. Varnish protects the surface and accentuates its features.


Wood is soaked to give a preservative and/or decorative finish. It can be used along with varnish for extra durability.


Wax is recommended for interior use only. Both oil and water-based types are available. It is applied with cloth and needs multiple coats and maintenance.


Oil can be used for both interior and exterior surfaces. It must be applied on an unsealed surface and it's highly flammable.

Wood Preserver

A wood preserver is used for exterior surfaces; it protects the plywood from insect damage.

Procedure For Finishing Oak Plywood

First off, you need to choose which finishing material you're going to be using, and you should know how to use it.

If you're using varnish, then you don't need paint spray or anything else; you just need to apply with a brush. If you're using lacquer, then a paint booth at a specialized workshop is required because lacquer is sprayed and requires a dust-free surface.


Sanding is used to make surfaces smooth and to cover visible scars. After finishing with sanding, dust is removed with cloth and allowed to dry.

Then, a first coat is applied which works as a sanding sealer that heals the wood pores. After the first coat is dry, another round of sanding is done with 220-grit sandpaper, after which the surface is cleaned again with cloth. Take care to avoid over sanding.


After two round of sanding, your plywood is ready for lacquer or varnish. If, after varnishing, the surface isn't smooth enough, you might have to re-sand it with 320-grit sandpaper. Sanding between the varnish surface enhances adhesion.

Best of luck with your oak plywood finishing project!