Differences between paint thinner and mineral spirits...

I realize it is commonly assumed that paint thinner and mineral spirits are exactly the same thing; probably due to the fact of their interchangeability as paint diluants. (But then turpentine is also so interchangeable with paint thinner, yet is obviously not exactly the same thing). I just picked up some mineral spirits to compare with some paint thinner of the same brand which I have been using. {Was crossing my fingers for an improvement in a problem I've been having with tiny air bubbles forming upon application of Varathane paint, after using mineral spirits to prime my paint brush with instead of paint thinner. T'was not to be, however. Next time I'll try turpentine and see if that won't deliver any advantage either.} Aside from the mineral spirits having a smell only-so-slightly different in character from the paint thinner, I also noticed that the mineral spirits worked surprisingly better than the paint thinner for the paint clean-up (i.e. oil-based Varathane). Mineral spirits seems to be a stronger solvent than paint thinner (or at least as far as comparing the two respective products of this particular brand is concerned).
Ken
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Ken Moiarty wrote:

Paint thinner is a description of the use, not the material. As you have noted many different things can be a paint thinner, even water, which would not of worked at all in your use.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia duit
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Joseph Meehan wrote:

One of the big problems with many retail brands of paint "thinners" and solvents is that they contain quite a bit of dissolved water. When used with moisture-cure polyurethane paints (almost every one-part PU is this type), the water in the solvent can cause bubbles to form or premature gelling in paint guns. Professionals who use PU paints also use de-watered thinners to avoid these problems.
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http://householdproducts.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/household/brands?tbl=brands&id 009013
read the MSDS and you'll opt for latex paint...
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Useful link. Thanks. TB
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http://householdproducts.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/household/brands?tbl=brands&id 009013
If you do look at the MSDS, be sure to go to the look at the bottom for the main ingredient Stoddard solvent. And then on that page go to the link for the list of products that use the solvent. There is probably not a house in this country (the one that requires MSDS notices) that does not have at least one of those products and likely several of them.
Charlie
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Informative link. But nothing that should come as a shock or surprise to anyone. I've known since I was a kid, in my grade 7 industrial ed. class, that hydrocarbon solvents of all kinds are neurotoxic. I recall how back then a couple of the rebellious "cool" kids would sniff paint thinner, even lacquer thinner, during class to get high. Fortunately for them, their interest in this activity soon tapered off. But 35 years later, both are alive and well, mentally and otherwise. Read the potential health hazards of any substance (medication side effects are a prime example) and you'll come away with the impression that the stuff shouldn't be permitted to even exist. Occasional use of Tylenol, for example, can cause permanent liver damage. This side effect is rare. But it gets full mention in professional pharmacy and safety-data reference texts nonetheless. Ironically, one substance 'nobody' usually thinks of as seriously toxic is the solvent, ethyl alcohol. This ubiquitous "beverage" alcohol is neurotoxic, hepatotoxic, nephrotoxic, etc...etc... Exposure to human or animal biological systems should be strictly controlled and limited. If the high standard applied to other hazardous substances was extended to alcohol, it would be strongly advised to avoid exposure (i.e. ingestion) of this hazardous substance. Hey guys! Let's say we meet at the bar and have a quick snort of mineral spirits? Well not quite. Just kidding. ;-) Couldn't resist the comparison though.
Ken

http://householdproducts.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/household/brands?tbl=brands&id 009013
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Years ago I bought paint and thinner from an employee of a paint maker. Have never used anything as effective as the thinner they provided. Ask at a paint store for suggestions.
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To all who responded to my original post: Until today, when I discovered and corrected a wrong default setting in my news reader, I did not see any of your responses. My apologies...
Ken
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Ken Moiarty wrote:

to get rid of the air bubbles.
warm the can up first, warm the floor up if you can
I wouldn't thin it, it's thin enough. You could end up with thin spots that need 2nd coat, then you'd have to feather the patches in...
You can probably go slower and get less bubbles as I remember they will pop on thier own before sundown.
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