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I posted a question a few months ago and we are just now getting into our home to clean up and finish the log walls on the interior. I reseached the chemical products for "bleaching" and cleaning the walls before sealing.Based on some replys I got and research We decided to go with just sanding to avoid possible damage to wood if not rinsed well enough. We today put the first coat of water based poly on and were very disappointed that the walls looked very blotchy. Not from the poly,but the sanding job we did. We used 60 grit discs to get the most yellow/dirt off. It looked like we had done a good job, but like I said, it was horrible. Before we go on to do the other rooms, does anyone have a cleaning agent the have used that is safe for the wood, but would lighten the wood and stains before we start sanding? We can't hose the upstairs walls to rinse since the second floor flooring is on, but I supose we could do the great room and downstairs that way if it was the best option. We have sanded the walls thoroughly again and will apply another coat of poly with hopefully a better result for the rooms we have already done. Any info would be great! We are going for a more natural/light look to the logs so did not apply a stain which may have helped hide some blotches! Help please! Thank you!

Jennifer

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If the mold is UNDER the finish it won't help at all. Oxolic acid does not kill mold, it does not clean, it only brightens.
Picture #78 - I can still see "blotchiness" on the bare wood. Especially the top one. If you apply the poly to this, your finish will be blotchy. What Log Wash does is clean.... And, it will brighten a little. Actually, looking at the closet wall, you could probably just clean your walls with Log Wash and not need to sand. (Please don't hit me!) If you just vacuum, you may remove most of the sanding particles, but it doesn't really get rid of everything like washing it does. Let me do this... send me an email to merry@permachink.com, provide me with your shipping address, and let me send you some Log Wash to try. You may be pleasantly surprised, and save yourself a lot of work. I'm not guaranteeing it will work, but I'll send you some if you'd like to try it. It won't cost you anything but a little time spent waiting for it to arrive, and a little time to try using it. It will work on the bare wood, it won't do anything to even out the tones on the walls you've already applied the poly to.
I would be happy to try it out! THANKS! I will send an email to you. Did you say earlier that your could sponge it on and off? so as to not flood the interior with water? I am sorry, all of the messages are a little hard to keep track of and follow. I should have answered you in one message instead of pieces!
I know, this has been a difficult one. I feel like I'm telling you the same thing over and over... Are you lost yet?

Log Wash would be mixed and sprayed on with a pump up garden sprayer, then you can rinse it off with a sponge.
Mary Anne - Could you clarify using Log Wash and using a sponge to rinse. What concentration of the Log Wash should you use? How many times should you sponge off with water? How long should you wait until staining? Currently I am at the step of having the entire logs sanded and will be caulking and then staining. I am using Perma Chink products and was not planning to use log wash but was going to use Prelude than Ultra Interior and finally top coat.
Rodney, The easiest is for me to supply you with the attached Technical Tip. Then it is not necessary for me to retype it all. With our products, you can apply the finish when the surface is dry to the touch. Typically you can clean one day and stain the next.

I hope this is helpful. If you have any more questions, feel free to contact me.
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Merry Anne,
I finally got to try the log wash-I was on a family camping/horse ride this weekend. -I am still waiting for it to dry after rinsing. Right now it doesn't look any lighter, but I thought maybe that would change after it was dry ( I am hoping) It did a great job of getting the black in the cracks out and some of the water drip marks. I didn't scrub it when I put it on, but as I was rinsing realized a little rub made the black come off better. Do you think I should use a nylon scrub brush on the harder stains right after I put it on? or is that not neccessary and if it doesn't come off then it's a stain that needs something else or is just in the wood. The tanin stains of course didn't come off and I am fine with those as they run with the grain. I know some people don't like them, but I don't mind. The other one it didn't get off was some black dots (like in one of the many photos I sent). I tried it on both a poly resanded beam and a fresh sanded beam as I didn't know how deep the poly soaks in and didn't think it was a fair test. should I try something else incase it's mold (to protect further growth or damage to wood)? or just stain the beams? We are prob. going to stain them anyway since there are many more beams that haven't been touched yet and look really bad. And we like that look (which is a plus)
Thank you so much for all of your time and answers and for the log wash! I feel like there is still hope!
One more question for you. We are prob. going to have our builder spray everything with acrylic as he told us it doesn't raise the grain nearly as much and won't likely require sanding in between coats. In your experience is this true? and are we likely to have absorption problems and blotchiness like we are experiencing now with the water poly? i get he feeling that the acrylic would be harder to sand off if it looked bad.
Thanks again and again!
Jen
Just a note, I used the stronger dilution of log wash that was on the label.
A light scrubbing with a nylon brush will help in your bad areas. And, mixing the stronger solution was the right thing to do since you're preparing the surface for application of a finish. If those black dots are UNDER the poly, nothing will take them off unless you remove the poly completely. Grain raise with any water based product is to be expected to an extent. Here is the trick, after the first coat dries, go over those areas with like a Scotch Bright pad - not sand paper to just knock the nobs off. Be sure to wipe them down to get any dust off. Then you shouldn't need any further sanding between coats. And another thing to keep in mind, it is hard to tell you in advance about the blotchiness. Every wood is different, every product reacts a little differently to every type of wood.

I showed your photos to one of our chemists. He thinks the blotchiness is a combination of sanding variances and wood just being wood. Keep in mind, we see wood as 2 dimensional in our homes because we see it after it has been milled. However, it was at one time a 3 dimensional object. Some of those areas that aren't taking the poly the same and leaving lighter areas could be the result of a branch that was growing out from that area, or you could have a mix of heart wood and sap wood on the same board. I'm not saying that is what it is, just that it is a possibility, and something to consider. When working with wood like this, nothing is that simple.

I hope this helps. Was the wood lighter after it dried?
Thanks! I will let you know about the dry walls later today. I am going over soon. When I went last evening the walls still felt damp to the touch and it didn't look much lighter yet. Thanks for the thoughts about the natural properties of the wood. Maybe I am expecting too much. I don't have much to go on except our friends house which is the only one I have seen with light wood on the interior and her builder used a bleach product.

On to another subject. Is Prelude a pre stain product? I was thinking if I stained the beams, maybe I should use a prestain product to help with even absorption. I know Minwax had a product like this. I would be happy to use yours though for staining beams. Do you have a recommendation for stain color that would help cover the "dirty" spots? We want there to be a definate color difference and I like a more brown rather than red tone. Thanks again for all of your help. I'll let you know about the outcome of log wash later.
Jen
In the rooms with poly being sanded off. I am reluctant to stain beams in case I didn't get every bit of poly off. Lots of corners in the one room especially. Do you think that is wise? I would assume that if there is any bit of poly left that the stain will not absorb. (These are the ones with one coat only.) Is that true?
If there is any poly left, and you try to stain over it, it will not coat evenly. That would be due to the fact that some of the pores would already be sealed and unable to accept the stain at the same volume. Prelude is our clear primer/sealer. Many people use it on the interior to keep a truer natural color under their top coat, and allow for a more even color if they choose to use a color coat of stain. (It helps with the "blothchiness" you've experienced) I would hesitate to advise you to use our Prelude under Sikkens poly since the products have not been tested together. I'm not going to say there will be problems, only that there COULD be problems. Please, don't try mixing products. Stay within your manufacturers product line, at least on the same walls. Lets say you wanted to use our products on your beams but not your walls, you could do that. But I would advise against using our product as a primer, and someone else's as a sealer. That could lead to issues down the road - and then, who would you go to? Same with mixing Min-Wax and Sikkens - I wouldn't advise it. Check with Sikkens and find out what kind of primer sealer they may have, if you want to go that way.
I checked the walls and they are not lighter. They do feel nice and smooth though. We did just try today to sand the bare walls with 120 grit and it seemed to make a nice finish. I don't know why we didn't try it before (I guess I thought we'd need a heavy grit to get rid of dirt and yellow). So...my newest idea is to try just sanding with 120 and then applying a sealer like Prelude before applying acrylic.(Dad is afraid that although the walls look good, we thought they did the first time around and it became blotchy. I am wondering now if we just "chewed" up the wood too much with the 60 grit and caused more problems with absorption) If the Prelude can mantain the look we are currently getting with the 120-our lives just got a whole lot easier! Can the Prelude be sprayed on? or how is it applied. Since we are prob. going to switch to the acrylic instead of Sikkens water poly. is it ok to use Prelude on walls? Are acrylics different? or should I ask my builder to use your acrylic (which I am happy to do)
Would we sand after the Prelude before applying acrylic?
Our builder also thought you could apply acrylic over poly but Not the other way around (I asked him because of the room I mentioned earlier that has so many corners and I was concerned about the poly not being completely gone) Do you agree with that statement that it could be applied over?
Also, what do you think about a stain color for the beams? I think sometimes it's hard to pick one looking at a computer screne and you have seen them first hand.

By the way, I am happy to pay you a consultation fee as I am asking you a ton of questions! You let me know!
THanks, Jen
should I send a picture of the 120 grit walls so you can make a better judgement?

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