That's right expert. I consider gloss a glare off of the surface of a finish
rather then the penetration and depth and also 3D effect you get by rubbing
out. But then again you are the expert with such vast experience...........
Read Odeen"s post about experts who have "read" something. It's tailored for
Mike why are you getting upset? You may wanna consider increasing your
dosage of whatever antidepressant your on.
I never said I was an expert, however I did say I disagree with you.
You said if you want a gloss on a finish don't rub out. Do you really
believe this? You may be alone on this one Mike.
Really? Because what I have read from your posts you consider glare the
reflection off of wood grain.
passes through the surface and reflects off the wood"
There's an inherent danger in armchair woodworking (or armchair
anything for that matter). While arming (pun intended) oneself with
as much information as possible before plunging madly into some sort
of endeavor is a good idea, eliminating a viable solution (for any
kind of problem), based merely on what you've read seems to be on the
close-minded end of things. Believe 3/4 of what you see, 1/2 of what
you read and 1/4 of what you hear. I dunno who said that.
As for shellac's supposed vulnerability to water - did you know
buttonlac (shellac that's prepared in a rather unusual way - it's
wrapped up in cloth and literally roasted over a fire; the molten lac
is subsequently squeezed out in fat drops and allowed to cool on steel
plate, forming a button-like glob of resin) is the preferred finish
for the hulls of wooden whitewater canoes? The reason is because the
buttonlac is quite hard, is resistant to (cold) water, is easily
renewed and slips over rocks and boulders like you can't believe. If
an oak end table is getting heavier use than the hull of a whitewater
canoe, then well, there are some serious issues going on in that
As for my analysis on the whys and wherefores of shellac's replacement
finishes, it is based on conversations/correspondence with many pros
in the finishing field, including exporters of shellac, finish
manufacturig reps, published authors (like Bob Flexner and Jeff Jewitt
to name a few), and my own observations of the industry. I'm a bit
reluctant to quote people directly, as I was not conducting interviews
and so I don't have their permission. So, while these opinions are my
own, they are not baseless.
Spraying to all fields - Watsoni and I have had many off-line
conversations, and so he and I go back a bit of a ways. He knows my
druthers on lacquer, having sprayed/polished/breathed my own fair
share while toiling in automotive spray booths. I used to use lacquer
on woodDorking projects as well, and I can't argue any of Tom's points
on it's ease of spraying, clarity and ability to take a high polish.
I do, however object to that plasticky look/feel one typically sees on
such otherwise fine articles of woodworking known as guitars. I think
once you've seen a french polished guitar (or ukelele), there's no
going back to lacquer. For some astounding work in shellacked
instruments, check this site:
http://www.ukuleles.com (The owner/build is a former customer)
Lastly, a sanity check on "high-use" furniture. Without sounding
condescending, it seems on so many fronts we want to have it all. In
the case of dining/kitchen tables, there has evolved this expectation
that one ought to be able to achieve a french-polish-like finish, and
still be able to glue model airplanes, change the baby, pull ear mites
from the cat, refinish an old radio, cook a small pig on a spit, serve
dinner on rustic stoneware, strip the finish off an old jewelry box
and feed the family on that one magically finishes surface, all
I (and I'm not alone, or companies like www.tablepads.com wouldn't
exist) employ table clothes, coasters and trivets to protect the
table's finish. This is only briefly, during mealtime. The rest of
the day, the dining table is displayed in all it's wonderful glory
(such as it is). Minor water spills, provided they're wiped up within
a day or two are gone without a trace. Yes, I said a day or two. If
you can't get to a spill withing a couple days, you are a slacker and
deserve a damaged finish. A spilled alcoholic drink?
Hahahahahahaahahahaha. Way too dillute to bother shellac, unless you
judiciously refresh the spill for a few days. What kind of craziness
would that be? I mean fer chrissakes people are still refinishing
their floors with shellac, and we're worried about end tables getting
too hard use?
Shellac - it's the only finish that's a combination dessert topping,
floor wax and hairspray... and it's certainly good enough, if not the
best choice, for casual end tables. That's my story and I'm sticking
The actual quote is "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of
little minds." Emerson (responsible for boobulous beach games in
LoCal?) said that. I just finished "Influence: The Psychology
of Persuasion" and Cialdini referred to this line as part of the
"click/whir" function of our minds.
Kinda like reacting to a .@. troll, wot?
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Flexner, in his book Understanding Wood Finishing, says "Because of
shellac's POOR resistance to water, alcohol, heat and alkali, it's not
the best finish for tabletops or other surfaces that are subject to
I'd vote for a polyurethane finish which has highest resistance to
water damage and most duraable finish altho v hard to repair - usually
requires stripping/sanding if top gets really messed up.
For the uses you are describing I don't see any reason to complicate things
by worrying about exotic finishes. If you really feel you need lots of
protection just get an off the shelf polyurethane varnish. It will do the
job just fine.
perhaps you meant "conversion varnish"? It's available at Sherwin
Williams, for one. But don't buy it unless you like working with
hazardous materials. It's got some real nasty chemicals in it.
Instead, IF you have any HVLP you can get good results with Enduro water
borne lacquer or poly. You have to order it via 1-800 or look up
Compliant Spray Systems. You can also get a catalyzer that makes the
finish more durable, which could be added when spraying the top. As a
matter of fact they suggest that you only add the cat. to the final
coat. I bought some cat. but haven't needed to use it yet. The poly
goes on beautifully with HVLP. Dries fast. Must be sanded between
coats for adhesion according to the mfg. I haven't taken any chances
and recoated without sanding...
Brian Turner wrote:
On 19 Jan 2004 05:19:54 -0800, firstname.lastname@example.org (Brian Turner)
Of course it's there, it's extremely common. So common in fact that
the "catalysed" part isn't normally mentioned. The only time we do
regularly talk about "catalysed varnish" is when it's not
pre-catalysed (as most of them are) but it's something like
acid-catalysed floor varnish that needs to be mixed immediately before
Get a copy of Flexner, or Google this ng. for more finishing
information than you can shake a stick at.
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