I am working on a remodel job and we are having trouble getting a blotch free clear coat. We are using water based polyurethane on new cedar, no stain.

  • Welcome to Woodworking SE. To get a feel for how things work around here, make sure you take the tour. Make sure you search previous Q&A for possible answers to this question; techniques for blotch-free softwood finishing is a pretty common question, so you might find someone has already answered it.
    – user5572
    Commented Feb 8, 2020 at 4:27
  • Could you describe the blotchiness you're getting in greater detail please? A few pics of some of the problem areas would not hurt either.
    – Graphus
    Commented Feb 8, 2020 at 8:13

2 Answers 2


It may take several coats unfortunately. Due to the nature of the wood, lightly sand between coats. Maybe a clear stain would work to provide protection of the wood.

What are you making more information may help


Blotching comes from the wood soaking up the clear coat unevenly. That can not only be an issue with staining wood, but also natural finish in some cases, possibly due to the presence of oils. One way to minimize it would be to seal off the wood with a dewaxed shellac first. Good news, it dries fast and you can put down your polyurethane after 1 hour.

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