All CUTEK® exterior wood oils are sold as clear, and if applied without an added colourtone they will cause the timber to quickly lighten naturally into a beautiful silver patina on exposure to sunlight and UV.

CUTEK® Extreme CD50 and CUTEK® Wood Preservative diffuse deeply into timber and will continue to provide moisture protection and improve dimensional stability even if the CUTEK® Colourtones are not added and the wood becomes weathered and grey.

If you would like to retain the natural freshly oiled colour of the timber you’re working with, you MUST add a suitable Colourtone to the clear oil. Choose one of our 16 Colourtones which have been specifically developed to closely match many popular wood species.

For best results, select a CUTEK® Colourtone that stays close to the natural shade of the coated timber.

CUTEK® Colourtones are only to be used with CUTEK® Extreme CD50 and CUTEK® Wood Preservative. CUTEK® Colourtones are not compatible with and must not be mixed into CUTEK® Interior or any third-party product.

  • Category
    Timber & Wood Stains, Timber Coatings, Timber Stains
  • Brand
  • Enhance, don’t mask the beauty of timber – highlights the natural grain and feel of timber
  • UV protection – slow the lightening/ silvering process
  • Extensive range of colours – choose from one of our 16 colours
Understanding Colourtones

It’s important to understand that CUTEK® is a unique penetrating oil system designed to enhance the natural colour and grain of wood. CUTEK® Extreme CD50 is sold as a clear oil which can be used to protect the timber from moisture and moisture related movement such as cupping, warping and splitting. Using just the clear oil will protect the wood, providing stability and structural integrity while allowing it to naturally lighten to produce a silver weathered patina over time. The soft natural lightening and silvering of the wood represents a low care option and is becoming an increasingly popular way to leave wood in weather exposed settings.

Wood projects using clear CUTEK® oil that have silvered can easily be returned back to the wood’s original colour using CUTEK® Restore and high pressure washing followed by further applications of CUTEK® Extreme CD50 clear oil.

However, if you desire to maintain the original colour of the ‘freshly oiled’ wood then you need to purchase a Colourtone to add to clear CUTEK® Extreme CD50. It is important that the colourtone that you choose is suited to your selected wood as it should further enhance the natural colour and grain and help to maintain its “natural” colour over a longer period of time.

What to Expect when using Colourtone

Most wood care products on the market leave a build up of material on the surface of the wood. In the short term this provides more colour, but in the long term the finish can be prone to peeling and flaking, which requires time and money to repair.

The CUTEK® system is unique because colour is designed to fade slowly over time rather than peel or flake. New smooth timber that’s exposed fully to the weather will lighten faster over the first six months after installation than older, rougher timbers over the same time period. A follow up application of CUTEK® Colourtoned oil after the initial six months weathering period will provide much greater Colourtone build and durability as the wood becomes rougher and more absorbent of pigment over time.

How to increase colour build on new wood

New wood is milled smooth and often has a mill glaze which will greatly restrict the initial colour build of any pigment. Better results can be achieved by creating a rougher surface and preparing the wood using CUTEK® Restore in combination with a high pressure washer. Sanding the new wood to 80 grit will give even better results as it removes mill glaze and creates a much rougher surface which will enable higher colour build. Note…The rougher the surface of the wood, the greater the colour build and durability. Rough sawn or heavy brushed wood profiles will take more oil and colour so much bolder colour contrast can be achieved. The amount of mill glaze if any that is present on any job can vary significantly depending on species density, and machining method used.

Note: sanded surfaces should be vacuumed or washed thoroughly to remove all loose wood and dust.

How to Choose the Right Colourtone

Selecting the Right CUTEK® Colourtone

Our CUTEK® Colourtone system is designed to enhance the wood colour and grain you select. With this in mind, you need to think about your original wood choice and the colour it most represents. Is it light to Golden, Brown, Red or a combination? Here are a few common examples to help you understand:

  • Black Butt and Silver Top Ash: Light tones so Rustic Gold is a good choice
  • Spotted Gum: Light creamy to brown and greys so Rustic Gold and Sela Brown will all look similar on new smooth wood.
  • Merbau and Red Iron Bark: Red to brown tone so Autumntone, New Bronzetone, Merbau or Burnt Red will all look very similar on smooth wood.
  • Forest Reds and Jarrah: Red tones so Autumntone, New Bronzetone and Burnt Red are all close options and will look similar on smooth wood.
  • For a good idea of what a colourtone will look like on your timber type, use our Colourtone Visualiser above.

Changing the Original Colour of Any Wood

For horizontal walk on surfaces such as decking, we recommend you select a CUTEK® Colourtone that is the closest match to the wood you have selected, rather than attempt to change the colour. You can talk to any of our stockists for advice.

For cladding and screening, a much higher build of colour can be achieved which can completely change the original tone of the wood. Even very light wood coloured species can become an almost solid Black, Grey, Red, Brown or Gold if the wood surface is suitably rough and more coats or a higher pigment loading has been added.

In some circumstances you can double your CUTEK® Colourtone to achieve bolder effects on rough or brushed wood. We advise that you contact us to discuss this option in more detail as we want to ensure you have the best information possible.

Recommended Colourtones for Timber Types

Common Timber Types in Australia

  • Black Butt: Honeycomb, Light Oak, Rustic Gold
  • Blue Gum: Autumntone, Burnt Red
  • Brush Box: Sela Brown, New Bronzetone
  • Cypress: Honeycomb, Rustic Gold
  • Ironbark: Burnt Red, Walnut
  • Jarrah: Burnt Red, Walnut
  • Merbau: Autumntone, Burnt Red, Merbau, Sela Brown
  • Mixed Hardwoods: New Bronzetone, Rustic Gold, Sela Brown
  • Pine: Goldtone, Honeycomb, Light Oak
  • QLD Spotted Gum: New Bronzetone , Rustic Gold, Sela Brown
  • Red Gum: Autumntone, Burnt Red
  • Rosewood: Honeycomb, Rustic Gold, Sela Brown
  • Silvertop Ash: Honeycomb, Light Oak
  • Tallow Wood: Honeycomb, Rustic Gold
  • Turpentine: Sela Brown
  • Victorian Ash: (Tasmanian Oak) Honeycomb, Light Oak
  • Vitex (Pacific Teak): Honeycomb, Rustic Gold
  • Western Red Cedar: Autumntone, Cedartone, Light Oak, Rustic Gold
  • White Mahogany: Honeycomb, Light Oak, Rustic Gold

Common Timber Trends

  • Hamptons/White Wash Look: White Wash
  • Instant Weathered Look: Smokey Grey, Grey Mist
  • Charred Timber Look: Black Ash

One CUTEK® colourtone size can be used in all pack sizes as follows:

  • 1 x 180 ml CUTEK® Colourtone pot is required for a 5 litre can of CUTEK® oil.
  • 2 x 180 ml CUTEK® Coloutone pots per 10 litre can of CUTEK® oil.
  • 4 x 180 ml CUTEK® Colourtone pots per 20 litre can of CUTEK® oil

Stir and mix the CUTEK® Colourtone well before adding into the clear oil. Continue to stir well with a flat stirrer, lifting from the bottom, for about 2 minutes before use and give a quick stir about every 15 minutes during use to ensure even results.

For best results, one coat of clear CUTEK® oil should be applied to all faces of the wood prior to installing, with a second and third coat of colourtoned CUTEK® oil applied to the top surface once the first coat is completely dry. Two or three thin coats on finished wood and hardwoods are better than one or two thick coats. CUTEK® oils will take longer to absorb/penetrate into dense hardwoods so thin coats are best so as to avoid delayed drying of the oil.

Note: 1L CUTEK® Colourtones are available by special order. Our standard 180ml CUTEK® Colourtone is not suitable for a 1 litre can of CUTEK® oil.


Colourtoned CUTEK® oil will lighten/fade faster in full weather exposed areas whereas wood in protected areas will retain colour with minimal maintenance over time.

CUTEK® is designed to gradually fade over time rather than peel, split or crack. Rejuvenation of faded timbers coated with CUTEK® oils is a simple, fast and cost-effective process.

Clear or Colourtoned CUTEK® oil should be reapplied as frequently as necessary to retain the natural beauty and colour of the wood. Assessment of this is subjective and it is important to realise that colour durability varies widely according to many factors including the age and porosity of the wood, species, situation, exposure to the weather and how rough the wood surface is.

Typically, horizontal exterior wood surfaces exposed to full weather such as pool decks and handrails will require re-coating more frequently (initially after 6 months, then annually), while other surfaces such as vertical rough-sawn cladding will need recoating less often.

SKU: cutek-c-1

About the

CUTEK® began as a problem solver in the market. We understood that timber is beautiful, however because it is a natural resource, it can have some inherent problems when using it to create lasting structures. The original CUTEK® formula was created to displace water from timber, giving it increased dimensional stability. We have then evolved to create other formulas included CUTEK® Wood Preservative, a decorative wood coating (that is able to be coloured) which makes timber resistant to mould, fungus and termites while also keeping it dimensionally stable.

CUTEK® is forever anticipating change and need. If someone wants to use timber in a unique way, or in a unique setting, we want to work alongside them, troubleshooting the problem towards an inspired solution.

We have always been, and always will be, champions for the use of the timber in the building industry. If you want to use it, we will help you find a way.

At ArchiPro we recognise and acknowledge the existing, original and ancient connection Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have to the lands and waterways across the Australian continent. We pay our respects to the elders past and present. We commit to working together to build a prosperous and inclusive Australia.