On Sat, 31 Jan 2009 13:31:36 +0000, Norm Dresner wrote:
There are professional (read: factory use only) finishes called
conversion finishes; catalyzed lacquer. I have no experience with these
products. Two part finish, like epoxy, you mix up and have a short pot
spray life before becoming unusable.
OSHA rated breath masks are not an option, a requirement. Spray booth is
There is a class of conversion finishes where the catalyst is included in
the can... the curing reaction starts with exposure to lots of air and is
a spray finish only. These are called pre-catalyzed lacquers, or pre-cat
lacquer. Many times sold in smaller quart containers as you would
expect. Again, normally not sold to home based shops.
Before you run off to Homestead Finishing dot com to buy some pre-cat
varnishes, take a moment and look at some trivets from neighbors and
friends. Well used ones will have marks and finish wear to show the
wooden trivets have been used. Some will even have marks of hot oven
bubbled over food from the side and bottom of a dish coming in contact
with the finish. Sort of difference between a house and a home. It
really doesn't detract. Ask the women's opinion as to their favorite
trivet and let that be your guide for effort to heat proof a wooden
So go ahead, try some water-borne acrylic lacquer from your local store
which will be so much safer for you to apply. Not as great of heat
proofing as the expensive pre-cat stuff, but what the heck, the important
point is the trivet gets used. Wall hangings are a different subject.
Depends on the finish. For epoxies a mask will do. For polyurethanes
you need an air supplied respirator. Note that not using a mask will
not kill you if you have enough ventilation that the solvents don't
knock you down--the real danger with polyurethane is that it is a
respirator sensitizer--one day you're spraying it without a mask, the
next day being in the same building with an open can of the stuff puts
you in the ER.
The ML Campbell Magnamax, a precatalyzed lacquer, actually brushes
All the wooden trivets I've made had no finish at all. They were made
to scorch, to burn, and to use. Sanding very smooth with a beeswax
finish should give a low luster. Lacquer, varnish, and urethane
finishes are very shiny, not sure what these would do if scorched,
I've used olive oil with a bit of gum/vegetable turps added for better
penetration, applied 2-4 times. Not particularly shiny, doesn't prevent
scorchmarks from a red-hot pan, but it works and is wet-wipable after
food splashes. Our trivets are made from Blue Gum and they certainly do
look *used* :-) but neither scored nor scorched.
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