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Nuts about Walnut

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Refreshing kiln-leeched color
Three grains being stained
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Water-based topcoats, middle,
enhance the grain of kiln-dried
walnut, but do nothing to revive
its grayish tone. But an oil-based
finish, right, brings the warm
colors back to life.

Refreshing kiln-leeched color

Many kiln-driers pretreat walnut with steam to darken the creamy, white sapwood, minimizing its contrast with the heartwood. That increases the yield of acceptably consistent wood color, but also leeches color from the heartwood, dulling it to a grayer shade.

Air-dried walnut, on the other hand, retains its creamy sapwood, but also its deep, chocolate heartwood and the variety of purple and reddish tones mixed in its grain.

More resources

  • For even more info about black walnut, visit woodmagazine.com/walnutguide.
  • To buy an article on enhancing walnut's beauty, go to woodmagazine.com/walnutfinish.


 

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