How to Find Defects Before Staining a Woodworking Project

Simple Solution

Paintbrush applying stain on a woodworking project
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Before staining a new woodworking project or refinishing a piece of furniture, you want to make sure you can detect any defects, such as sanding swirl marks or scratches.

In a cup, add a few ounces of mineral spirits and then pour in several drops of the wood stain.

Dip a clean cloth in the stain and wipe it onto the wood. Any defects will become clearly visible.

Let the pre-stain dry for a few minutes, then sand it again, paying particular attention to the area where you saw the flaws.

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