There are several ways in which you can prevent or at the very least reduce this problem. It is easier to sand through the lacquer coat down to the wood surface at the edges than in the middle of the back or top. Great article, especially for us long time workers of wood who still consider finishing to be a black art. When a clear finish is needed over whites or light colors Water Clear Acrylic is the answer. Acrylic lacquer is made with a non-yellowing cellulose resin and has a thin consistency.
Natural stain can be applied to raw wood to condition the surface for uniform penetration of the stain. LMI Pore Filler dries hard within a few minutes, so this water-based paste must be applied to the wood surface in an entirely different manner than the oil-based filler is applied. Trade Secret Furniture Cleaner & Polish is a silicon-free cream polish that works extremely well. After reading Bob Flexner’s book Understanding Wood Finishing I decided to try a high build finish.
Besides the somewhat noxious solvents contained in lacquer, the only other downside is that the nitrocellulose resin (contained in ordinary lacquer) tends to yellow with age, which may be an issue on lighter-colored woods. The European technique, which is used on furniture and other objects, uses finishes that have a resin base similar to shellac. Both develop a tough coating on wood, though lacquer is more durable than shellac.
Scraping the bristles over the edge of a container leaves the brush too dry to apply a coat of the right thickness. A finish to be manually applied by brushing or wiping will have a different blend of additives than one formulated for spraying. This lacquer solution will have more thinner and lacquer retarder than the Build lacquer mixture. Plus, don’t think that you’ll get away without some kind of spray control and filtration. Some cedars and members of the dalbergia genus, which includes rosewood, cocobolo and African blackwood, contain antioxidants that prevent oil-based finishes from curing, but don’t affect shellac, lacquer or most waterbased coatings.
If you are finishing a lighter colored wood such as teak, use a natural or clear colored paste wax so the natural color will not change much. Some of the most dazzling and renowned wood finishes in the world have historically been from padding very thin coats of shellac onto the surface of the wood (a technique called French Polishing ) until an immaculately clear shine emerges. The spray equipment must be carefully maintained and controlled to provide a smooth, consistent finish.
I know a doctor who treated a Midwestern woodworker with third degree burns (charred flesh) from a lacquer fire. The clear color of water-based polyurethanes is a definite advantage if you’ll be trying to match a finish later on; it will be easier to do if the wood you are trying to match was given a clear water-based finish. Apply to furniture, doors, cabinets and paneling for a crystal-clear, durable wood finish.
When a light buffing with steel wool, I was able to acheive the evenness I needed, and it would also dull the finish so I could see better where the unevenness was. Shading color mixed into finish – Use either our Alcohol Soluble Aniline Dyes, FSB or dye concentrate – MEK-Soluble, FMDYMEK. Jet Spray is economical, easily applied, and dries quickly to an alcohol resistant finish.
You might find sprayer at a discount hardware store that costs less than you’d pay for a lacquer brush. His book, Understanding Wood Finishing, has sold 400,000 copies since being published in 1994. It can be affected by heat (white rings will appear under a hot bowl or mug) or chemicals, so a kitchen table might not be the best place to use it. Fine furniture items can be greatly enhanced with shellac. Brushing lacquers are not recommended for amateur use; spraying lacquers must be applied with a motorized spray gun.
Spray lacquer outdoors unless you have a spray booth, but don’t spray if there are a lot of bugs in the air. In reality, there is still enough finish there that has soaked into the fibers of the wood to create a soft sheen. When the top coat is applied, the oil in the stain seeps up through the finish and reacts with the acrylic causing a chemical blush. It is no different from a brush – a spray gun is just a vehicle to move finish from the can to the project. Don’t get your guitar too wet as if water gets in screw holes it will swell the wood and crack your finish.
Fish eye: the finish bunches up into craters or ridges (most common when refinishing, due to silicone from furniture polishes getting into the wood). The lacquer fumes at best will kill a mess of brain cells and at worse could kill you if they build up enough, and they will build up. Wear a respirator (a paper mask is not a respirator). Lacquer is usually applied by spraying, so the process outlined here will focus on this method of application. Catalyzed lacquer is very durable and resists scratches, staining and water rings. Use these aerosols when applying a new finish or on spot repairs when rubbing will be necessary.
Once the sealer is dry, the entire piece is uniformly sealed, and the next coat of finish will lay out the same in all areas. I learned that spraying a perfect finish was truly impossible, but some experimentation with rubbing yields astounding results. If you have any concerns about using or purchasing a spray gun, let me know below in the comments section.
Method 3: The most effective, yet slightly more complicated method to completely prevent the end grain from staining up dark is to apply a wash coat (a very diluted seal coat) of finish onto your project and lightly sand it. Finish by spraying on the stain in a spray stain format where there will be little or no wiping off of excess stain. Besides this issue I would give the product five stars, but am now looking for a replacement lacquer. Hi Mark, I’m building a wood slab dining table (silver maple) and have been struggling with what type of finish to put on it (reading endless forums and everyone having a different opinion).
Final smoothing by wet-sanding to a very high grit, while still striving to keep the surface flat; it is possible to introduce waves and other dips into the finish even after switching to very fine grits. TRI-M-ITE No-load Sandpapers FMTMT – 120/220/320 grits to final sand wood surfaces before finishing. The entire finish can be renewed periodically by rubbing in an additional coat. Strong ventilation of the spray mist while spraying, and of the curing instrument after spraying, is a must. This versatile all-around poly provides good protection on a variety of wood surfaces.
Imagine if you were to submerse a piece of wood into sealer, letting it absorb all it could at the end grain or spongy areas, then remove it and wipe off the entire surface. The milkiness (called bloom or blush) is down to spraying in humid conditions and it’s caused by moisture getting trapped in the lacquer. Until the early 1990s, uncatalyzed straight nitrocellulose and acrylic lacquers were the standard for wood finishing. Water-based finishes, which are acrylics, give the wood no color nor do they darken as they age. Slightly overlap the layers of the lacquer to ensure all areas are fully coated.
Although car sprays come in a wide variety of colours, many people have found that it doesn’t harden very well on wood and can stay soft for many months. The drawback to introducing contamination into the finish is that both the spray equipment and spray areas will be contaminated. Nitrocellulose lacquer is a popular type of wood lacquer because it has a quick drying time and leaves a durable, glossy finish. No two finishers spray alike and differing techniques and colour goals will affect these proportions. One reason for lacquer is that the successive coats ‘blend or melt into the previous coats. You can dry sand the finish level with an electric random-orbit, but only certain finishes.
Work in small areas at a time so that you may closely examine the lacquer surface and observe the progress of the leveling process. This is not a hard and fast rule, though, since when you stain will change the look of the filled wood. After the last coat is applied, if the sheen does not look even, you may apply a few additional coats until you achieve a uniform sheen.
Projects finished with Goudey’s Beautylac III post catalyzed lacquer will require this advanced sanding unless it has not yet fully cured in which case the 770 P&VR will be strong enough to break down the finish. When correctly applied, the end result is a glowing high-gloss, one-coat finish executed in record time. The cons for using lacquer are also numerous – finicky to apply depending on temperature and relative humidity; need of a well-ventilated area in which to spray the finish, and in the winter, where I’m heating my studio in New Hampshire with a pellet stove, open flames are a very bad idea around lacquer.
It’s been 4 years, and I still like the appearance – admittedly, I can’t say one way or the other if it has yellowed much at all, but it sure doesn’t look like it has to me. I chose to do that because it’s a finish that’s very easy to refresh with a new application. In fact, some companies sell waterbased wood putty that can be thinned to create pore filler.
Before applying lacquer, test the spray can on a piece of newspaper or cardboard. I don’t sand between coats but the frictioning smooths out any ridges in the finish. Obviously, this article only skims the surface of all there is to know about wood finishing. In addition to adding a protective coat, it also can add a warm amber color to wood. I make mostly flat, with some raised areas on them, decorative wall hanging objects approximately 2×1 foot in size and was looking for an alternative to a multicoat oil finish my favorite finish but it’s a week long process. It’s sometimes difficult in pictures to demonstrate how shiny a finish is; that’s why I like this picture.