Staining raw white oak

I have an unfinished, “raw” white oak battery box and want to know what others do to finish it.
Do I stain it first then CPES it then varnish it?

This is a pity response, and there is an entire CPES discussion in the Hull Construction area. Its all about if you want the stain locked in or on top of the CPES. I personally have stained the wood first, using the CPES as a 1st coat of varnish. BUT, some are saying the oposite. Read the CPES discusion HERE- Thoughts on Smith’s CPES? - #10 by Tuobanur


I’m with Matt on this, stain, then CPES as your sealer, and varnish. The CPES makes the rest of your coats of varnish go on much better, obviously you sand between those steps.

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Thanks. Good answer and very informative!