Thinning Arm-R-Seal finish

Hey all, I've been lurking a while, finally have a question of my own:
Looking for some advice re thinning General Finish's "Arm-R-Seal" tung/poly mix.
I've made a smallish box of padauk and shea-oak, intended to hold a set of dominos, and given it an initial coat of Watco's danish oil. I'd like to give it a little more protection against dings and scratches than Watco provides, and am thinking of applying a couple of thinned coats of Arm-r-seal.
Why thinned, since ArS is already fairly watery? The area where I can apply finish is pretty cool/wet right now, and I'd like to keep the drying time to a minimum to cut down on dust. When applied in summer, ArS dries to touch in 15 minutes or so. Now, it's running to 45 minutes.
Also, I'd like to keep the wood as naked looking as possible, so the thinner the coat the better.
General Finishes recommends mineral spirits for clean up, so I imagine that one would use it for thinning as well.
1. Has anyone tried applying thinned coats of Arm-r-seal? Did you use mineral spirits? How were your results?
2. Could you use a thinned coat as a final coat, where it would remove/wet the light sanding marks and hopefully dry before dust lands?
Needless to say, the box is an xmas present, so time is short. I won't have time to do tests or apply the number of coats of Watco's that would be neccessary to build up a protective layer.
Thanks, Paul
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Hi Paul, I don't think that you should do it. There would be little gained and may even cause problems with the Arm-r-seal drying properly. The best bet would be to allow the Watco to cure a minimum of 72 hours, then topcoat with wipe on poly. gene

tung/poly
apply
to
in
thinner
that
remove/wet
have
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You should have no problem thinning it with mineral spirits. In fact you may wish to blend the Arm-R-Seal with a danish oil finish like Watco for a hybrid finish that has more solids than watco alone, but less urethane than Arm-R-Seal alone. I've done this many times, with good results.
My only complaint about Arm-R-Seal is that it sometimes looks slightly cloudy to me. Honestly, I much prefer waterlox wiping varnish.
Good luck,
Glenn de Souza Scottsdale, Arizona

tung/poly
apply
to
in
thinner
that
remove/wet
have
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I've had a quart can of Arm-R-Seal for 8 years or more. It's never been cloudy, yes it can be thinned with paint thinner, but it will slow the dry time lot's. It dries slow anyway.

of
to
time
touch
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On Sun, 21 Dec 2003 12:45:18 -0800, FOW wrote

Slow the dry time? Hmm. I would have expected otherwise, since each coat would be more volatile and go on thinner.
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Paint thinner is an oil, it slows the dry time. I sometimes use a heatgun after an hour of putting on the arm R seal to help speed things up. Try not to get it much over 85 degrees though. Scuff between coats with gray scotch brite. I like at least 3 coats.

dry
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Yes Dave, sometimes I just put a match to it. Amazing how fast it dries.
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I think You might be right. They tell you to thin varnish and poly if its hot out to give the bubbles a chance to "pop" out.
I kind-of like Formbys "tung Oil" finish. It's actually a wiping varnish; not an oil/Varnish blend. Seems to flow out a little nicer than wipe on poly. IMO at least.
I've heard some people will apply a coat of *finish* and then set a box down over it to keep out the dust.
Thanks, Tony D.
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