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Dyeing Purfling Strips Black (Potassium or Sodium Hydroxide in step 1)

Urban Luthier

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Quick question for those who have used Roger Hargrave's recipe to dye pear wood black. 

  • The first step calls for boiling the pear wood strips in water with 6 grams of Potassium hydroxide (KOH)
  • A simialr recipe is published in the Courtnall and Johnson book calls for Sodium hydroxide (NaOH?) in this step


I'd like to check to see if 1) either chemical will work in this step and 2) what is the purpose of this step. To clean the wood to accept the stain? other?


Thanks in advance!



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