Easy Application Tips for Staining Rough Sawn Wood
Rough textured wood also known as “rough sawn” is wood that is used as originally cut. It has not been smoothed out or sanded in most cases. Wood like this is a bit more difficult to stain than smooth textured wood but it does not have to be an overwhelming task. Rough sawn wood is commonly used for exterior wood fences, decking trim, and house trim. Typical wood types are cedar and pine.
Using the right stain and tools can make the job much easier when it comes to rough sawn.
When dealing with rough sawn wood it is important to prepare the wood prior to staining. Use a wood cleaner to break loose any dirt, grime, and gray fibers. Then wash the wood surface with a stiff brush or pressure washer. Be careful not to use excessive pressure that could damage the wood surface. After using a wood cleaner, a wood brightener should be applied to neutralize the pH level and brighten the wood back to its original appearance.
Note: If the wood is new, no prepping is needed and staining can be done right away.
Once the wood dries following cleaning it is time to stain. Check your local weather and make sure there is no rain forecasted for the next 12-24 hours. It is also best to apply wood stain in temperatures between 60-80 degrees. It should not drop below 32 degrees within 8 hours of staining.
Choose a wood stain that is specifically designed for rough sawn porous woods. You want to use a good penetrating stain that states it is best for rough textured surfaces. Stay away from hardwood stains and film forming type of stains.
For rough sawn wood you can use a brush and/or roller. A brush is good at getting into corners and cutting in along edges. If you use a roller a ¾” nap is best for pushing stain into the rough surface. Try not to stain in direct sunlight. Mask off any areas you do not want stained. Stain one board or section at a time to eliminate lap marks. If the wood seems really thirsty, you can apply two “wet on wet” coats if the stain you are using allows.
You can also apply stain to rough sawn wood using a pump or airless sprayer. Spraying the stain can allow it to get into the rough texture of the surface with less effort than brushing or rolling. Just be sure to mask of any windows, siding, concrete and other surfaces in the area.
Note: Our favorite method for staining rough sawn is to lightly spray on the first coat with a pump sprayer. This will absorb deeply, giving a nice base coat. We then follow up with a stain pad or brush to apply a second coat right away. This will ensure a nice even coverage.
Always follow the instructions on the label of stain you are using. Wear the proper personal protection. Depending on the stain you, use mineral spirits or soapy water to clean up all your equipment and tools after staining. Keeping rough sawn wood maintained can be easier by following these simple guidelines.
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