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Getting Ready To Grain Fill


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well, doing searches on this forum and reranch just gave me so many different answers that i felt that i would like to get some advice first hand.

ok, so i am ready to grain fill my swamp ash body to prepare it for a solid color finish. after reading other threads about grain filling, i realized that there were a lot of people doing different procedures.

now, my understanding is that i should apply the grain filler directly to the body. however, i have read that others like to lay down a clear coat first then apply the grain filler. i have also read something about a "wash coat".

ok, then after i apply the grain filler (maybe 2 times or enough to get the grained filled in), i suppose that i can then apply my sanding sealer. again, i have read some posts where some people shoot a clear coat over the grain filler prior to applying sanding sealer.

so, well then... what steps do you folks take? also, i have a can of behlen's water based grain filler... opinions?

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Dude, pick a method, try it on scrap, and then go for it.

I tend to seal (shellac, because filler? Doesn't pop the grain), fill, seal (shellac again, even out any sand-through), spray finish. Or stain, seal, fill, seal, spray. Usually requires several fills, and a wood like Swamp Ash almost certainly will.

If you're using epoxy, I'd wager you can just apply the epoxy filler, and voila, a pore-filled, sealed AND grain popped surface ready to spray.

The reason to seal before filling is either because you don't want the stained filler to get on the wood, just in the pores, because grainfiller doesn't 'wet' the wood like a solvent finish/sealer can, or because you don't want to much with the stain job you've already done, etc. ALWAYS test your whole finishing schedule, from pore filling to final spraying on scrap.

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