Surface Stain finish

It is usually best to finish a floor before starting construction. Floor finishing is easier and neater when the floor is flat on the table. For many floors, the extra durability of a finished surface is important protection during the build .

supplies

Surface Stains are not intended to penetrate the wood or emphasize the wood's grain. They go over the flooring and modify the darkness of its appearance. In the darker colors, it is your technique that gives a wood-grain look to the final product.

The surface stains that are normally available are oil-based polyurethanes with stains mixed in. They use paint thinner as a cleanup solvent.
Use in a ventilated space
Protect your workspace from drips and spatter

All wood flooring

Smooth Plywood
Scored Plywood
Veneer on MDF
Builder-applied flooring

Special considerations: Do all sanding with fine sandpaper
If the surface seems splintery, start the sanding cross-grain to 'roll' off the splinters (rather than snagging them and making them bigger).
Do the final sanding with-the-grain

Scored wood-print flooring on MDF

Special considerations: Do all sanding with woven sanding pad (like "ScotchBrite")

Demo below:
   Surface Stain on wood-print flooring
Click on a photo (below) for a larger picture.
The new window can be re-sized or closed when you are done
I am gently sanding with a woven pad, circular motion at first, and finishing with-the-grain. The sanding will remove the sheen and smooth the ridges left from scoring the surface sanding
polyurethane stain
This is "PolyShades" polyurethane plus stain... there are many brand names of this product. I am putting it on thick to flood the scoring grooves, then brushing out the surface so the brush-strokes will show. staining
Straight full-length brush-strokes and a thin finish leave some of the wood-grain showing. In the darker colors this is even more important as a thick coat will cover the wood-look entirely staining
polyurethane stain
Polyurethane takes one day to dry.
You can second-coat the flooring for an even darker look, second-coat with a clear polyurethane, or use the floor as it is.
sanding
If the final finish is too glossy, sand it again with the woven pad to remove the shine and use a paste wax on the surface