Finishing Ambrosia Maple

Ambrosia Maple Box with General Finishes Seal-A-Cell Finish

Ambrosia Maple Box with General Finishes Seal-A-Cell Finish

Wormy maple is often referred to as Ambrosia Maple due to the fact that the wormholes are caused by the Ambrosia beetle. The result is a distinctive gray to brown streaking against the creamy white maple wood. So how do you finish this maple? It depends on what you want for an outcome.

Oil base clear coat:  Clear coating with an oil based top coat such as Arm-R-Seal or Seal-a-cell from General Finishes will promote the variation in the grain between the creamy white wood and the worm streaks, and will also amber over time, providing a little color but not too much.
Water base clear coat: clear coating with a water based top coat such as General Finishes High Performance Poly Acrylic will seal the wood with the clearest possible finish, and the least amount of color.
Oil based Stains: Either gel oil base or penetrating pigmented wipe on oil based stains can  be used to deepen the color before top coating. Gel Stains are topical, distribute more colorant and will provide a more uniform color. Wipe on stains penetrate the wood, promoting more variation in the grain.
 Waterbased Dye Stains: designed for the professional user, these ready-to- use dye stains serve 3 functions. They can be applied directly to the wood as a layering color beneath pigmented wiping stains , they can be used to tint top coats to give the project a color shade, and they can also stand alone as a direct application. In the case of this wormy maple, if you were to choose the use of a dye stain, we would recommend tinting the water based top coat with a 2 to 3% volume of amber dye stain used in a spray application.

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