Penetrating Wood Stabilizers

Penetrating wood stabilizers can help to prevent uneven stain absorption or moisture-related warping. July 20, 2011

I am curious about a product called Nelsonite. I was at a shop looking at some prospective work and the owner showed me a really sweet piece of cherry that had ultra clear graining. He said that it was pre-wiped with Nelsonite, set for 24 hours, and then wipe stained and finished. I had not heard of this product before so I went on their site and the product is used to swell and even out soft/hard graining. Has anyone here used this product? I am curious as to how it would work on maple H/W and veneers as our sales force has been on a real maple kick for the last six months.

Forum Responses
(Finishing Forum)
From contributor H:
Nelsonite is a penetrating wood stabilizer. I have soaked Warp Prone wood in it as well as exterior doors to retard wood movement. SW also has a similar product Homoclad Sealer which acts as a wood stabilizer and retard moisture penetration. I use it as a stain base on all my exterior doors for insurance agents excessive movement. Nelsonite use to be an amber color, so it was not great for water white clear maple, they may have changed since I last used it.

From the original questioner:
I am looking specifically for outcomes using the interior product. On their website they list 3-4 different types, one of which is exterior.

From contributor J:
15B02 is what you use. Best stuff out there for stain control on cherry.

From the original questioner:
15B02 is exactly what I am talking about along with the cherry. Could you please tell me if you have tried it on other species with erratic stain absorption such as maple H/W or veneer and what your results were?

From contributor J:
Personally - just cherry though I don't see why it wouldn't work on solid maple. The different issues you present sometimes require different solutions. For example issues with veneer I typically recommend trying to go with a spray/no-wipe stain.

From Gene Wengert, forum technical advisor:
Have you tried sanding sealers, or even a wash coat of varnish that has been thinned? If not, try them and see how they work. Be very careful with cherry as if the pH is not very close to 7 (neutral), you can get some darkening or reddish development.

With all finishing products, be aware of the carrier or vehicle, as some products have a vapor that is quite dangerous to humans and to the air. The release of VOCís is often carefully controlled, with fines for non-compliance, etc.