recipe to restore VOCs?


I've used a brand-name semi-trans oil stain on my redwood deck every 2 years. I'm in a semi-arid climate with not much rain, lots of sun, and cold winters. Mildew and UV damage finally showed up, so last year I rented a big sander, took it down to good bare wood (after resetting/ replacing the deck screws), and stained it again. The next rain, I noticed that water didn't bead at all. So I did a 2nd coat after it dried out well. Next rain, only a little beading. I compared a new can to a very old used one, and saw that the VOC number was down. Now, a year later, the deck looks like it had been painted with water color and most of it had simply washed off. I emailed the manufacturer and got back the excuse that the California EPA had required that VOCs be reduced and it was out of their control. Well, I'm not in California, and their new formula is crap. I want my VOCs back. Since every paint manufacturer, apparently, has jumped on the environmental bandwagon, I don't see any purpose in looking for the "best" stain; I assume they're ALL reformulated and therefore are ALL crap. What I want is a way of restoring the performance of the new stuff to at least that of the good old stuff. Has anyone experimented with adding, say, boiled linseed oil with some turpentine or mineral spirits, etc? (I'll assume a packet of mildewcide is a given...) I'm looking for a TESTED recipe using readily available oils/solvents, nothing exotic or expensive. Does anyone have some experience here?
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On Sep 10, 12:42 am, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Think your're out of luck. VOC's are volatile organic compounds and stain was probably reformulated with less water proofing in order to keep down the mandated VOC levels. Best to look at other brands which may work better. I saw something on reformulated Thompsons where the new formulation clogged the sprayer I tried to use and even with a brush you could see stuff crystallizing out which was effect of lower VOC's.
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I find it hard to believe that every painter and paint shop in this country has meekly accepted this inferior 'green' nonsense; their livelihoods and reputations depend on the quality of their work and products. It's certain that many of them figured out long ago how to circumvent these stupid regs and keep their customers happy. They're the ones I want to hear from.
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On 9/10/2008 6:28 PM snipped-for-privacy@aol.com spake thus:

It's hardly "nonsense"; it's well established that VOCs cause all kinds of bad things, like smog and irritation to people who breathe them. Not even close to the "controversy" over global warming, but settled science.
That isn't to say that oil- and solvent-based products are often much better than their water-based replacements. I used some water-based varnish on an exterior door a while ago and just hated it; didn't flow on worth shit. But it looks like we're just going to have to learn to live with them. (Much like the problems caused by the ROHS-mandated elimination of lead-based solder: lead is much easier to work with than its replacements, but it's just too toxic.)
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Yeah, yeah. Lots of things are bad for us. I'll take my chances, thank you. BTW: no smog here, even before the environmental and health hysteria kicked in. So why am I being limited as if I lived in Los Angeles? You hate it, yet you defend it. Curious. Are you saying that if there were a simple way to restore performance, although not following the letter and spirit of the law, you would reject it? We agree that the new stuff is crap. The difference is that you accept the scaremongering, while I don't. If you haven't noticed, the almighty State is slowly taking control of our lives - for our own good, of course. At what point will YOU say, "enough"? When they have us running laps or doing calisthenics every day? When they start monitoring our individual weights and diets? When they ban fire in any form? My limit was reached years ago. "Land of the free"? I don't think so.
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On Sep 11, 9:49 pm, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Maybe you just used crap, Consumers Reports has an ongoing maybe 8 yr comparison, go read it,and post back, I subscribe to it.
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What's this - a plug for Consumer Reports? If you have something to recommend, why not just SAY IT?
As far as I can tell, EVERYTHING has been "reformulated." I'm not interested in CR's best of the crap (which I would suspect also involves a steep price). I want the real thing. I want those dirty, evil VOCs, which have a record of excellent performance for at least HUNDREDS of years.
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

stains and finishes. Bob Flexner is one good author that comes to mind. I too am disgusted with the quality of finishes available today and have started to mix my own. I can't claim that they meet the TESTED recipe requirement yet. It's getting to be difficult to buy the components from the various chemical supply houses. They behave as if every one is an idiot or a terrorist. Recently I had to supply a xerox copy of my degree to purchase chemicals that I don't regard as being as hazardous as my wife's cleaning supplies.
Boden
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Thanks, Boden. I've looked online and found specialized recipes for things like furniture and gun stocks that start from scratch, but nothing about "doctoring" the new paints and stains. I assume people are doing it, but they may not follow these newsgroups or they may be reluctant to admit it. I suppose there might also be some question of compatibility of the old oils/solvents with the new formulations. As for the "tested" part, it would still be useful to hear from anyone who tried something that was NOT successful. We learn from trial and error, and this would help zero in on what helps or hurts, what's too much or too little, etc. Even a failure is a good data point.
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On Sep 9, 11:42 pm, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Many brands on the market have 3-5 year guarantees. Maybe the best way to fight the problem is have everyone force the manufacturers live up to their guarantees.
red
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Good idea, Red, but the key word is "everyone." Most people tend to ignore guarantees because it's a hassle to follow up. The manufacturer's customer service folks will want the location and date of puchase, the numbers on the cans, a receipt, when and where and how you applied it, etc, and you might get a refund. They're counting on laziness, basically, plus meek acceptance of "that's just the way it is," as seen in the response I got from one manufacturer and two of the responses here. It might help to bypass customer service and complain to the company honchos directly. But I suspect that the easiest response for them would be to reduce the guarantee period to just a year or two. This doesn't help us. We'd still be paying more for an inferior product that doesn't last long. And that's why I want to skip the complaining and fix the problem myself.
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