I’ve never used Quartersawn White Oak before, so I’m experimenting with some different finishes. I’ve done two samples so far, using a combination of Aniline dye and gel stain. The sample on the left was dyed with Brown Mahogany first, then stained with General Finishes “Candlelight” gel stain. The sample on the right got Medium Brown aniline dye followed with Walnut gel stain. I top coated with two think coats of blond shellac, rubbed out with 0000 steel wool and waxed with a brown wax.
I want a little more contrast between the ray flacks and the rest of the board, but this is pretty good I think. If I let the dye dry overnight and then rub the surface with steel wool or a scotchbrite pad I think the way flecks will lighten up a bit more — they don’t seem to get any color from the gel stain.
I prefer the color of the left sample, it has a little more red in it.
I’m going to try fuming a sample with ammonia too (followed by a coat of linseed oil, garnet shellac and brown wax) and see how that comes out.