This steel wool and vinegar stain is straightforward to make, straightforward to apply, and instantly offers wood a deep, rich color. Do some currently with this goof-proof recipe!


Steel Wool and also Vinegar Stain

This DIY stain is made through two straightforward ingredients. Steel wool and also vinegar. Steel wool and also vinegar stain is a an excellent alternative to store-bought wood stains. It’s basic to make and easy to apply. We’ll test four species of vinegar an unified with three kinds of homemade pre-stain conditioners to instantly produce a variety of deep, well-off colors.

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Inspiration for This Project

A when back, I common this dark brown stain tutorial. In that tutorial, I discussed that I applied a stole wool and vinegar stain come this DIY electric fireplace.

After publishing that tutorial, I obtained messages from readers asking for a much more in-depth watch at how I made a stain through steel wool and vinegar.

I offered white vinegar in the tutorial, for this reason I assumed we should shot something various this time. In this tutorial, ns tried mixing stole wool with:

White VinegarRed alcohol VinegarApple Cider VinegarBalsamic Vinegar

In the dark brown stain tutorial, I applied a DIY lumber conditioner before I applied the vinegar steel wool stain. The DIY timber conditioner the I used was black tea. Yes, the black tea that you drink.

Related: how to make a Tea Stain

In this tutorial, ns experimented with using three homemade pre-stain air conditioning before using the stole wool stain:

TeaCoffeeDIY black color Walnut Stain

Related: What i Use rather of lumber Conditioner

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What Happens as soon as you apply a steel Wool and Vinegar Stain come Wood?

Applying a steel wool and also vinegar stain come wood reasons the lumber to instantly adjust color. This color change is different indigenous the color adjust that happens when we apply a store-bought wood stain.

Applying a store-bought stain adds color to the wood. It’s comparable to using a cloak of paint to a wall.

Applying a vinegar stole wool stain causes a chemical reaction through the wood. The stain reacts with the wood and also causes it to oxidize.

It’s a comparable reaction that occurred to make the vinegar stole wool stain. The vinegar caused the metal of the stole wool to oxidize or rust.

Related: just how to period Metal

It’s important to note that the chemistry reaction in between the stain and wood can be contempt unpredictable. In other words, the color might vary slightly from board to board.Back to Table the Contents

Experiment Results

I meant to view a huge color difference between the four types of vinegar, however the most dramatic shade differences were in between the pre-stain conditioners.

I planned to share image of every the samples, however the white, apple cider, and also red wine looked virtually identical. It actually looked favor I posted the same picture three times!

The biggest difference was in between the balsamic vinegar and the various other three type of vinegar.

Instead of share all four vinegar samples, I determined it do the many sense to share the ones v the most dramatic differences: the white and balsamic.

White Vinegar

The white, apple cider, and also red wine vinegar all had a warm, red undertone.

The “vinegar” sample was applied directly to bare wood. No pre-stain conditioner was supplied for this sample.

Balsamic Vinegar

The balsamic samples had a cool, greenish undertone.

The “vinegar” sample was applied directly to bare wood. No pre-stain conditioner was used for this sample.

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What do You should Make steel Wool and Vinegar Stain?

We only need a few simple ingredient to do a vinegar steel wool stain.

We’ll need some steel wool. I provided #0000 steel wool to do my stain.

We’ll require some vinegar. I provided white vinegar, to apologize cider vinegar, red wine vinegar, and also balsamic vinegar that ns purchased at my neighborhood grocery store.

We’ll likewise need a container come mix the vinegar and also steel wool. I provided a 1-quart mason jar to mix mine.

After the mixture satellite for a few days, ns strained that using among the techniques that I use to stress, overload paint.

Related: exactly how to strain Paint

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How lengthy Should steel Wool Sit in Vinegar?

I’ve heard the much longer the mixture sits, the darker the stain will certainly get. I normally let mine stain sit for around three to 4 days. Girlfriend could try a much shorter time, favor 24 hrs to watch if you obtain a different result.

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What If i Don’t see a Reaction?

You may not check out a reaction. Ns let my stain sit for around three to four days.

After 4 days there was only a slim color readjust in the white vinegar. It adjusted from clear to contempt greenish/blue color.


Then, I gotten rid of the steel wool and strained the solution. After straining, i noticed the solution had become really dark.

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What is the Shelf Life?

I don’t recognize the specific shelf life of the stain, yet it appears to come to be less reliable over time.

On the left, is a raw item of hardwood without any kind of stain. On the right, is a item of lumber that to be stained through the vinegar stain the I created this tutorial.

In the middle, is a piece of hardwood that i stained for this tutorial using a vinegar stain that i made number of years ago. The stain that ns made several years ago was no as dark together the fresh stain.

My recommendation would it is in to do the stain and also use it as quickly as feasible for the deepest color.

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What sort of Wood can You Stain?

The vinegar stole wool stain deserve to be provided on any form of wood, however each wood will reaction differently. Every one of the samples in this tutorial were tested ~ above pine.

And remember that the chemistry reaction in between the stain and wood have the right to be contempt unpredictable. In various other words, the color might vary slightly from board to board.

I would recommend do the efforts the stain on some test pieces before using the on your project to be sure it will give you the shade that girlfriend want.

See more: Convert Icd 9 Code For Hip Bursitis, Convert Icd

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How perform You use the steel Wool and Vinegar Stain?

I supplied a disposable brush to apply the stain. A foam brush or an cheap chip brush functions well for this. Ns didn’t use my good quality brushes that I use to repaint my projects since I was pertained to the steel wool and also vinegar mixture might permanently stain them.

Related: how to Clean paint Brushes