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Hello,

I am in the process of re staining my front entrance door and side panels. They are actually made of a composite material and have a wood grain so as to appear like wood, but they are cored with other material to make them stronger and less prone to "wood issues". I have been staining with a process of semi transparent stain and highlighting areas with solid color stain of the same color.

I have about 5 coats on now and I am ready to clear coat. Here is what the doors look like after the work thus far......(all hand sanding, tack rags, steel wool between layers, etc.) I am pleased with the look and clarity. They appear just like wood with the light quarter sawn effect from using the solid stain to highlight some areas. After all, I don't want it to look like paint when I am done.



I am using all Behr Premium Products, which I have had good results with previously in their exterior stain, etc. Everything I am using this time is a Latex based stain and clear coat, so its water soluble for clean up.

The clear coat really surprised me when I just opened it. After stirring, this is how it looks......



The can did not appear to have been opened before. I just bought these in the last week, along with the stain. The clear coat has a very heavy tint to it, almost like the semi transparent stain. Even when I stir it with the pain stir stick, it stays on the paint stick just like the stain did.

The last time I clear coated this door, it was with an oil based clear coat and I certainly don't re call it being "tinted", in the way this clear coat is. Have any of you used the Behr Latex clear coat sealant and found it to be tinted to the stain color you were working with?

This is way too much labor and time invested in this door to screw it up now. I applied it to the stir stick and it definitely left a tint on the stir stick, it wasn't just clear.

On Behr's website, it says ""The beauty of the wood grain shows through with a hint of color."" So, perhaps Behr is tinting the clear so it doesn't appear like a plastic layer of clear when applied.

Not sure if I should proceed with this clear coat or not. I sure don't need to be sanding and re doing this door and side panels again. Once every 5 years or so is plenty often enough for me...........

Thoughts? It sounds like their premium latex based clear coat for exterior stain does have a color tint in it to match the stain being clear coated. i didn't realize they tinted clear coats. The last time I did this with the oil base, it was as clear as water when applied. It was also clear when it dried.

I distinctly remembered watching the woman tint the stain, both the semi transparent and the solid color, but I didn't see her tint the clear coat. I don't remember her even shaking the clear coat, to be honest.......

Thoughts?
 

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Here's the door before I started this process a couple of days ago....for comparison.....

 

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Well, I don't have any advise about the clear. You're doing better than I did with a similar product. When I was building our lake home in the late '90s, I purchased a similar exterior door from Pease. It had the wood grain texture and it may have been a composite, but it appeared to be more fiberglass than anything. Pease staining instructions called for a semi-transparent made by Minwax and I followed Pease and Minwax instructions to the letter.

I wasn't at all pleased with how the stain applied and I immediately had some adhesion issues, where it was starting to peel off----this was before I even got to clear coating. Of course, it adhere just enough. I couldn't sand it off without impacting the wood grain texture. So I end up having to utilize paint stripper, which meant the glass panel had to come out so I could get all the stripper cleaned off.

It turned into a huge project. Once I got it stripped and prepped, I abandon any idea of a stain. I sprayed it with a single stage polyurethane automotive paint.

But I should have disregarded the balance of Pease's instructions, which specified to coat it with the light (glass) panel in place to seal it, which I did. The door and the light frame expanded/contracted at a different rate with temperature, so all the paint cracked around the light. If I had done them separately, while apart, I likely wouldn't of had any issues.

About a year or two after that, the door panel cracked between the latch hole and the light opening, as there wasn't much door material between them, couple in temperature and the pulling force on the handle when opening/closing.

I got about $3K in this door and a whole lot of time. I get highly annoyed every time I look at it. So I seldom utilize it. Some day I'll replace it with a steel door. I paint all my steel doors with single stage polyurethane automotive paint. It is very durable, cleans easily, and looks great. Definitely not cheap. However, I'm not having to do it every 5 years, either. Its been 20 on the steel doors with automotive paint and they still look great.
 

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I have no idea if it should have a tint but I would do two things.

Take it back to the store where you got it and have them open another can to see if it is the same. Then I would test a very small area that if you don’t like it you won’t show so bad. I guess the third thing is I would let it sit for a week and make sure you don’t get any peeling or lifting.

It’s a little too dark to take a good photo but this is the inside of our front door which is a steel door and a guy we know painted it for us. He passed a few years ago but he did this 20 years ago and it is kind of neat because he put his initials in a knot that is at the lower right of the window.
 

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I would speculate that if the product describes a hint of color then it has been deliberately stained.
There should be plenty of clear latex products available, I would return that and hunt for something genuinely clear.
The entrance looks fantastic now, I would fear undoing your current effort by adding more tint.
 

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I'm with JeffB. I would try to get the clear, clear coat, that's just too much work to start over.
 

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Well, I don't have any advise about the clear. You're doing better than I did with a similar product. When I was building our lake home in the late '90s, I purchased a similar exterior door from Pease. It had the wood grain texture and it may have been a composite, but it appeared to be more fiberglass than anything. Pease staining instructions called for a semi-transparent made by Minwax and I followed Pease and Minwax instructions to the letter.

I wasn't at all pleased with how the stain applied and I immediately had some adhesion issues, where it was starting to peel off----this was before I even got to clear coating. Of course, it adhere just enough. I couldn't sand it off without impacting the wood grain texture. So I end up having to utilize paint stripper, which meant the glass panel had to come out so I could get all the stripper cleaned off.

It turned into a huge project. Once I got it stripped and prepped, I abandon any idea of a stain. I sprayed it with a single stage polyurethane automotive paint.

But I should have disregarded the balance of Pease's instructions, which specified to coat it with the light (glass) panel in place to seal it, which I did. The door and the light frame expanded/contracted at a different rate with temperature, so all the paint cracked around the light. If I had done them separately, while apart, I likely wouldn't of had any issues.

About a year or two after that, the door panel cracked between the latch hole and the light opening, as there wasn't much door material between them, couple in temperature and the pulling force on the handle when opening/closing.

I got about $3K in this door and a whole lot of time. I get highly annoyed every time I look at it. So I seldom utilize it. Some day I'll replace it with a steel door. I paint all my steel doors with single stage polyurethane automotive paint. It is very durable, cleans easily, and looks great. Definitely not cheap. However, I'm not having to do it every 5 years, either. Its been 20 on the steel doors with automotive paint and they still look great.
I think our door is an Anderson, because they have already replaced it under warranty once after about 10 or 12 years. It began to get moisture between the panes of glass and my wife sent photo's and the company sent out a new entrance door assembly and two guys to replace it. They did a marginal job on the install, so I re did much of it and sealed it correctly. This door gets direct sunlight from sun up until at least 3 pm each day. It faces south east, so the sun beats on it constantly.

I haven't had any adhesion problems and I think this is the 3rd time I have done this in about 20 years. I will say, compared to a "true wooden door", this one has been much less trouble and less work. It shuts the same and latches just as it should all 12 months of the year. We had a "real wood" entrance door on our last house and that one was more trouble than this door has been. I think I became a master at adjusting the door latch and lock mechanisms to keep that wooden door shutting correctly.

We have neighbors who paid big money for a custom built pair of wooden doors and not only are they refinishing them every couple of years, the doors swell and stick so often, or they shrink and rattle when the wind blows, so they avoid using them.

Another neighbor asked me to mow his lawn for him last week when he was traveling on business. After I mowed and trimmed, I was walking up his front sidewalk with my back pack blower on and I always clean the front entrance areas and walkways, etc. When I aimed the back pack blower at the very base of the door, it blew his front door straight open. No one at home, either. I took a picture and called him right away as I wanted him to know I was going to have to go into his house, lock the door from the inside and then walk through the house to leave through a service door with a handle lock on it. When he got on the phone he said, "I noticed the door has been rattling lately and not latching correctly." First time I have ever blown open someone's front door with my back pack blower.....:laugh::lol:

I went home and got some tools and adjusted his door for him so it would latch and stay shut and locked. Otherwise, someone could have just pushed on it and opened it based on how it was when I found it. He was going to be gone for a couple more days and I didn't want to leave his house that un-secure.

Neighbors about 5 houses down the road are having the entire outside of their house painted by a professional painting crew right now. They have spent the last week sanding and priming and began the color application today. Everyday, there are 5 to 7 people working on the project. I asked the neighbor what he is spending and he said it's $17,300 for the exterior painting...........They will have 5 people with 80 to 100 hours each plus a couple of part timers to complete the job. It's a lot of work to do it correctly and from what I have seen, they are doing it all right. They are cutting in all the trim today and the boss was starting with the base house color.

Few people want to take the time to do a paint job or refinish job correctly. And it usually shows in the end results.........
 

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I think our door is an Anderson, because they have already replaced it under warranty once after about 10 or 12 years. It began to get moisture between the panes of glass and my wife sent photo's and the company sent out a new entrance door assembly and two guys to replace it. They did a marginal job on the install, so I re did much of it and sealed it correctly. This door gets direct sunlight from sun up until at least 3 pm each day. It faces south east, so the sun beats on it constantly.

I haven't had any adhesion problems and I think this is the 3rd time I have done this in about 20 years. I will say, compared to a "true wooden door", this one has been much less trouble and less work. It shuts the same and latches just as it should all 12 months of the year. We had a "real wood" entrance door on our last house and that one was more trouble than this door has been. I think I became a master at adjusting the door latch and lock mechanisms to keep that wooden door shutting correctly.

We have neighbors who paid big money for a custom built pair of wooden doors and not only are they refinishing them every couple of years, the doors swell and stick so often, or they shrink and rattle when the wind blows, so they avoid using them.

Another neighbor asked me to mow his lawn for him last week when he was traveling on business. After I mowed and trimmed, I was walking up his front sidewalk with my back pack blower on and I always clean the front entrance areas and walkways, etc. When I aimed the back pack blower at the very base of the door, it blew his front door straight open. No one at home, either. I took a picture and called him right away as I wanted him to know I was going to have to go into his house, lock the door from the inside and then walk through the house to leave through a service door with a handle lock on it. When he got on the phone he said, "I noticed the door has been rattling lately and not latching correctly." First time I have ever blown open someone's front door with my back pack blower.....:laugh::lol:

I went home and got some tools and adjusted his door for him so it would latch and stay shut and locked. Otherwise, someone could have just pushed on it and opened it based on how it was when I found it. He was going to be gone for a couple more days and I didn't want to leave his house that un-secure.

Neighbors about 5 houses down the road are having the entire outside of their house painted by a professional painting crew right now. They have spent the last week sanding and priming and began the color application today. Everyday, there are 5 to 7 people working on the project. I asked the neighbor what he is spending and he said it's $17,300 for the exterior painting...........They will have 5 people with 80 to 100 hours each plus a couple of part timers to complete the job. It's a lot of work to do it correctly and from what I have seen, they are doing it all right. They are cutting in all the trim today and the boss was starting with the base house color.

Few people want to take the time to do a paint job or refinish job correctly. And it usually shows in the end results.........
I'm glad I don't have neighbors but if I did I'd want one like you.:bigthumb:
 

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I have no idea if it should have a tint but I would do two things.

Take it back to the store where you got it and have them open another can to see if it is the same. Then I would test a very small area that if you don’t like it you won’t show so bad. I guess the third thing is I would let it sit for a week and make sure you don’t get any peeling or lifting.

It’s a little too dark to take a good photo but this is the inside of our front door which is a steel door and a guy we know painted it for us. He passed a few years ago but he did this 20 years ago and it is kind of neat because he put his initials in a knot that is at the lower right of the window.
Looks like someone tinted a clear coat by accident...
I would speculate that if the product describes a hint of color then it has been deliberately stained.
There should be plenty of clear latex products available, I would return that and hunt for something genuinely clear.
The entrance looks fantastic now, I would fear undoing your current effort by adding more tint.
I'm with JeffB. I would try to get the clear, clear coat, that's just too much work to start over.
I am going to go back to Home Depot tomorrow with the can and see what the paint department has to say, as well as have them open another can of clear.

I pulled the old can of clear out of my "paint can drawer" and while it was a oil based product, it was as clear as water. Of course, I don't want to put the oil based clear over the latex stain after all of the time spent stripping the old finish off the door.

It was one week today since I applied the first coat of stain. I have applied one coat of stain about each day, with weather permitting. Area's where my prep work had gotten into the "texture grain" of the door surface, I very delicately painted those areas with the solid color stain to give it an intentional variation. Then I would stain over it with the semi transparent stain, paint the "defect" again with the solid stain, then another coat of semi transparent, to a depth of 5 layers.

One of my complaints before was the surface was so uniform, it almost didn't appear that it could be real wood (which it's not). Now, with this effort, there is enough difference in the color and appearance of the surface I think it actually looks better than when new. But I have spent a lot of time painting these areas to looks like "variations" and it seems to have worked out.

Thanks all for the comments. I wondered if anyone had ever encountered this "tinted clear" before as I sure hadn't.

I will post the results from my visit to the store........

I hand painted the big flower pots on the front porch and painted the leaves all around them by hand for a surprise for Mrs. Bear. I painted those and textured the pots to look like Terra cot-ta / clay pots and it's been a few seasons now and they could use some touch up. But the pots are actually some type of injection molded material like Styrofoam with a hard smooth surface layer on the outside. There are bricks inside them to weight them down. They have been quite durable and certainly are easier to carry around and store in the winter.

Main thing was she liked them, and then said "How about painting 6 more pots just like those for by the garage doors.". I don't think she realized how much time I spent hand painting those little flowers with this tiny paint brush and the paint was from a Testor's Model Paint Set like I used to use when I made models as a kid.........So, I decided to give her something different.

I found some little old steel farm buckets at an auction with wire metal handles and drilled drain holes and painted them differently, with much less detail.......:laugh::lol: She was happy and that's what's important.
 

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Today I took the quart of clear back to Home Depot Paint counter. This time, the woman who I usually deal with was there and she is very sharp. When I walked up and started to explain the story to her, she looked at the can in my hand and said "That's not the right product for what you are doing." She then asked me who waited on me and I described the woman and she replied "Oh, that's _______ and believe it or not, she is the boss of the department." Apparently, being the boss doesn't equate to product knowledge. I got the impression that incidents such as mine aren't as rare as they should be.......

The clear product which I had been sold and which I posted pictures of above in this thread, is intended to be used to clear coat unstained deck material. I asked her why as a "clear" it had the pigmentation and she said "when you are clear coating the deck boards, the color adds some consistency to the treatment on bare wood." But she was very adamant that it was NOT the correct product for my project.

She ended up selling me a gallon of oil based clear product. She even called the manufacturers product help line to explain to them that I would be using the Oil Based clear over the Latex stain. The expert said it should work just fine and not be any problem. But I appreciated her extra effort to double check the use of the clear product. She had the expert on her speaker phone so we could both hear him and I could ask him questions.

Apparently, Home Depot is changing some of their products and they were clearing out all of their Min Wax stains and clear products and had some new products which she wasn't real familiar with, which is why she offered to call the help line at the company who makes the clear. This clear is really clear, just like I wanted it to be. They have different levels of "gloss" in the clear line and I picked a semi gloss as she said the high gloss clear tended to make it look like it was behind shiny plastic, so I went with the semi gloss product.

Hopefully, tomorrow will be the day when I apply the first coats of the clear. I will take pictures of the product I use and the end result of the door with the clear coats on it.

Today, I spent dealing with trying to set a tree back up and stake it, which a recent storm had tipped over. It turned out that the tree base actually broke when I finally got it straightened out, so after a couple of hours of monkeying around with the tree and pounding metal fence posts for stakes to tie the tree off as I was setting it up, the tree is going to be cut down.

When I was pulling the tree back into its prior position with the 1025R and a tow strap, I was also using a 5 ton hand come along, when the tree got fully vertical to attempt to properly position the tree as it had been. I heard a loud "SNAP" and crunching sound and the tree actually rotated somewhat. Too much damage to the roots and the tree is now dangerously unstable when upright.

Time for the tree to come down and get put on the burn pile. I figured this would be the outcome, but Mrs. Bear really wanted me to try and save the tree, so I spent the time and effort to try and get it set back up. The time I spent on setting it back up would have easily gotten it cut up and hauled to the burn pile. Oh well, :dunno: I tried like I promised I would.

My tractor didn't struggle at all setting the tree back up. I did put the tractor in 4wd since I was on the lawn and didn't want to spin the rear tires getting the tree fully upright. This tree is heavy. I know the rope I bought to stake it stretched to the point i thought it was going to break. I used a 30 foot heavy duty tow strap to pull the in the rear hitch oftree and a clevis the tractor. Once I got the tree up and it rotated on it's base, it's clear the root damage is too extensive for the tree to survive. So, its pole saw and chain saw time for the burning pile.

Here is a picture of the tree lying back on the fence, again. This is my project for later in the week.......with the pallet forks and front end loader, the tractor makes it a much easier project to handle and deal with.



For the past several days, I have also been dealing with the respiratory infection / sinus infection and headaches which have really been zapping my energy. It's amazing how fast I get exhausted working out in the sun, with the chronic bronchitis with a sinus infection or whatever it is. When I came in the house after wrestling with the tree and Mrs. Bear saw how wiped out I was, she immediately called my doctor I have an appointment tomorrow at 8AM with my primary doctor to hopefully get this taken care of so I can resume my normal activity soon.

Thanks to everyone for their input and comments on my door project. I averted disaster by not using the original clear product which was sold to me. I forgot to take photos of the new product but I will when i am using it and the end results of the clear application.

Thanks again..........
 

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Got the right stuff and all I can say is WOW......

Here is what the correct clear for the door turned out to be. Glad I went with Semi Gloss and not "Gloss".......MinWax is a great product.:good2:



Here is the finished product, before pulling the tape. I am going to apply one more coat just to keep the door protected. But the product applied very easily, just watch for runs and also don't brush it more than twice or it leaves brush strokes......

Very Happy with the result and even more importantly, so was the BOSS.....Mrs Bear.

Yes, I got lazy and didn't remove the handle for the clear coat, but I taped the edges of the brass very carefully. I spent more time screwing around getting the keyed deadbolt to work on both sides of the door the same way with the same smoothness. It's not a complicated mechanism, just real picky about alignment so it's real smooth when you turn the key. I think I had the entire assembly on and off at least 4 times to get it right, so I left it on for the clear coat........

 

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I was wondering what you were going to be utilizing to withstand the UV. Good choice!. I utilized that same Minwax Helmsman in my home, except a satin sheen. I didn't utilize for it anything exterior, as I had no exterior woodwork. However, I utilized it on all my interior woodwork that was on an exterior wall and/or had sun exposure. That was in 1998. I'm just now beginning to have some very isolated peeling issues on some windows with HEAVY sun exposure. I can't really complain for 20 years.

I ran three coats on everything. I sprayed all of mine. It was much quicker and as you found out, it will show brush marks. When I did mine, we didn't have any big box stores here. The only place I could purchase it was Sherwinn-Williams, at $33.00/gallon with my discount. I sprayed over 20 gallons of it and another 40 gallons off regular polyurethane on the balance of the woodwork.

I think they may have modified the formula on polyurethane since then. Back in 1998, it would still be tacky to the touch three days later and it would be 7 - 10 days before I could sand/steel wool between coats. I didn't think I was ever going to get done!

I utilized the same products on my beach house re-build in 2009/2010 and I only had to let it dry 24 hours before I could sand/steel wool between coats.
 

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Here is what the correct clear for the door turned out to be. Glad I went with Semi Gloss and not "Gloss".......MinWax is a great product.:good2:



Here is the finished product, before pulling the tape. I am going to apply one more coat just to keep the door protected. But the product applied very easily, just watch for runs and also don't brush it more than twice or it leaves brush strokes......

Very Happy with the result and even more importantly, so was the BOSS.....Mrs Bear.

Yes, I got lazy and didn't remove the handle for the clear coat, but I taped the edges of the brass very carefully. I spent more time screwing around getting the keyed deadbolt to work on both sides of the door the same way with the same smoothness. It's not a complicated mechanism, just real picky about alignment so it's real smooth when you turn the key. I think I had the entire assembly on and off at least 4 times to get it right, so I left it on for the clear coat........

That looks great. I'd hire you to do mine if you weren't so far away!
 

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I was wondering what you were going to be utilizing to withstand the UV. Good choice!. I utilized that same Minwax Helmsman in my home, except a satin sheen. I didn't utilize for it anything exterior, as I had no exterior woodwork. However, I utilized it on all my interior woodwork that was on an exterior wall and/or had sun exposure. That was in 1998. I'm just now beginning to have some very isolated peeling issues on some windows with HEAVY sun exposure. I can't really complain for 20 years.

I ran three coats on everything. I sprayed all of mine. It was much quicker and as you found out, it will show brush marks. When I did mine, we didn't have any big box stores here. The only place I could purchase it was Sherwinn-Williams, at $33.00/gallon with my discount. I sprayed over 20 gallons of it and another 40 gallons off regular polyurethane on the balance of the woodwork.

I think they may have modified the formula on polyurethane since then. Back in 1998, it would still be tacky to the touch three days later and it would be 7 - 10 days before I could sand/steel wool between coats. I didn't think I was ever going to get done!

I utilized the same products on my beach house re-build in 2009/2010 and I only had to let it dry 24 hours before I could sand/steel wool between coats.
I found if you brush it no more than twice, once on and once more to spread it, then the brush marks weren't a problem, but if you had any runs, which are very easy to have in the corners of the moldings, etc. then you have to be super careful to just spread the small drops from the run and not brush the whole spot.

I found this dried very quickly compared to my past experience. But, we also have had perfect weather conditions. 70 degrees and low humidity.

As with anything which works really well and seems to be a great product, Home Depot is no longer going to carry this and in our store, they are phasing out the entire Min Wax line of products. It has to be a $$$$ deal at the top as the product they are replacing it with I had never heard of the brand or the company which owns it. The gal at the paint department whom I deal with (normally) and she has been extremely helpful and knowledgeable was not happy with the product change. I ended up getting the gallon for $22 as part of their closeout pricing. I am going to make an effort to apply a coat of the clear each summer on the door to help keep the next "complete overhaul" of the finish down the road several years......

That looks great. I'd hire you to do mine if you weren't so far away!
Thanks, I would do it if I weren't so far away. I don't mind these types of projects as I enjoy seeing the progress and results. Plus, there is some satisfaction in getting it to turn out well. When it doesn't turn out well, then I guess that's more practice on getting it right.....:laugh:

Very nice job. Looks great.:good2:
Thanks, my boss, Mrs. Bear was pleased with the results. Now, I am going to try and hand polish the door knocker that was on the door as it was quite corroded. Someone gave it to us as a wedding present with our names engraved in the door knocker base and that means it's nearly 35 years old. No wonder it's old looking and tarnished, just like I am.....:laugh::lol:

I have a feeling I am going to need to order a new door knocker from Baldwin because many of the items which are sold to be engraved don't have the best finish on them. We have all Baldwin locks and Hardware on all of our doors. I really liked the fact that it was one of the few still made in America at a Foundry. Well, that's no longer the case. Like too many other formerly great companies, they bent to the "China" sourcing to bring in some lower priced point hardware. I was very disappointed to hear that Baldwin was now coming from overseas as well. If I am not mistaken, I think the parent company may have been bought up by someone else as well, which likely explains the changes made. You know, bottom line $$$$, verses American jobs and the best product quality they could provide.

I can understand that not everyone wants to spend $500 (retail, you can easily get it for less.....) for the front door handle and lock assembly, but it really is (well, at least it was, I will need to look at the new stuff closely) a very good door hardware set with a real nice finish on it. That handle set is about 23 years old and still looks and acts like new, despite me taking it off and on for projects like this.....

Plus Baldwin has always had those really Big Key Blanks, which are easy to find on your key chain. I just had some more keys made at the locksmith as I bent one I had on my key chain and the lock smith told me the large key blanks may even be changing......He still had a bunch of the old stock which was good.
 

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Looks good SulleyBear. Although I haven't done major wood work as of late, I've found in the past that when using Minwax I could get rid of the brush marks. I'd always use at least 3 coats and in between coats I'd use 000 steel wool, use compressed air to blow it off and then wipe it down before the next coat. More coats I put on the less the brush marks show.
 
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