Last week we had the finish chemically removed from our cabinets (best $500
I ever spent). We then stained it with a Minwax water-stain (Sedona Red) and
we're ready to apply a top coat.
The question is, would it be better to use a water-based topcoat such as
Minwax Polycrylic, or an oil-based finish? The instructions on the can and
the FAQ at minwax.com suggest you can use either, and don't give any advice
as to which would be better. I'm told by a painter friend that oil-based
products will eventually yellow a bit, but water-based products may pick up
humidity from the air and cause the cabinets to stick.
I live in a high humidity area and have been told that the finish on my
kitchen oak cabinets is polycyclic. They've never had a problem with
sticking, but the finish around the dishwasher and the cabinet under the
sink area have peeled were they've gotten water splashed on them (hate
this). I've tried to always wipe up any splashing, but they peeled anyway.
Don't know if it's not polycyclic and was just told that by the cabinet
installer or if that's a problem that polycyclic is not that waterproof. I
need to repair the finish someday soon and want to use something more water
resistant than what ever is on them now.
Would love to hear opinions on polyurethane vs. polycyclic (satin finish).
And wondering if I can just do a sand on the finish I have or do I need to
Talk to minwax , the concern is oils from your hands and cooking may
degrade water finish faster, only miwax will know.
Oil will finish smoother and yellow.
Water base may degrade and show brush marks unless sprayed and is
probably less water restistant.
Flecto Varathane waterbased polyurethane prints on the label "Our
hardest finish" and they also make oil based polyu. I grew up with
oil based as that was all there was and have switched to WB as much as
possible! Scuff sanding between coats of polyu is needed but it goes
quickly. Doesn't amber like oil based does.
On Mon, 3 May 2004 12:13:46 -0500, firstname.lastname@example.org (m Ransley)
While it is true lacquer is often used in manufactured furniture and can
be a very good finish, I would not recommend it for most user applied
The commercial stuff is a bit different. As I recall it is UV hardened
after being applied hot, conditions that the home user can't reproduce. A
different product is sold for home use and it does not result in the same
Before I built my kitchen cabinets, I did a test of several finishes. First
I used the same maple wood that the cabinets were to be built from and
finished several small pieces with various finishes that I thought I might
use. I did the finishes just the way I was going to do the final finish and
let them cure for a week.
The only one that passed the test was oil based poly.
The test was full strength 409 dropped on one spot and left to dry, than
washed off with a wet cloth. All the finishes but the oil based poly showed
a "etched" spot in the finish where the 409 sat.
I figured the kitchen was the hardest place on a finish and needed to be
cleaned often due to grease fumes and water so I finished the cabinets with
oil based poly and haven't had a single problem.
My neighbor had a pro build his cabinets and he used a water based lacquer,
now 4years later they are peeling and need to be refinished.
"Shut up and keep diggen"
How long ago did you do this test? Water based polys have improved a
lot and not all that long ago were not equal to what they are today. Of
course there are still differences.
BTW while your test may not have been perfect, I think you had a good
idea. You also had a chance to judge how difficult they may be to apply,
and how good they would look.
Finishing gurus assert conversion varnish is the ideal litchen finish.
Manufacturers use lacquer for finishing primarily for the speed of
drying in a production environment.
On Tue, 04 May 2004 09:39:37 GMT, "Joseph Meehan"
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