Each month when I preview our guest writer’s article prior to publication it always stirs up thoughts and experiences I’ve had over the years. This month Bill Perry writes about applying painted finishes.
I know I’ve mentioned this in previous letters I’ve written to you but one thing always stands out in my mind when applying a painted or solid color coating to a wood surface. Specifically the type of wood you are painting on and paint shrinkage.
If you remember some months back I told you one of my piano refinishing stories where I was asked to turn an old mahogany wood piano into a black ebony piano. Basically, a black ebony finish is a painted finish. To abbreviate the story, I failed to fill the grain and the grain reappeared. Lesson learned: paint shrinks in the curing process. Open grain woods need to be filled prior to painting to counter the effects of paint and coating shrinkage.
To change gears for a moment and still thinking about painted surfaces, one of the most frequently asked questions is about spraying latex or emulsion type paints with HVLP technology. This is not the easiest question to answer but let me try to put this in perspective for you.
Before spraying latex paint with an HVLP sprayer, determine what you are trying to accomplish.
While one would think that applying paint to a surface is easy, like any other skill, knowledge is key to the easiest path and best results.
This month’s article by Bill Perry has some wonderful thoughts and ideas for you.
Sr. Vice President and COO
Apollo Sprayers International, Inc.
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While we may think that applying a film finish such as lacquer or polyurethane over natural wood can be a challenge, here’s a much tougher one: achieving a flawless painted finish. Blemishes in a clear film finish are disguised by the color and grain pattern of the wood. There’s no such hiding place with paint. Light playing across a painted surface only draws attention to any surface defects – and any pattern of wood grain showing through paint now becomes a defect instead of a feature.
As with most things, there’s good news and bad news about this.
The good news: you can achieve a finish so flawless that it looks as if it belongs in an automobile showroom READ MORE
The following is a basic understanding of the common solvents available in paint stores and home centers.
Mineral spirits (paint thinner) and naphtha dilute and clean up oils and varnishes, including oil-based polyurethane varnish. Neither of these solvents damage any fully dried finish, so you can safely use them for cleaning—that is, removing grease or wax.
Denatured alcohol thins and cleans up shellac. This solvent will damage a dried shellac finish almost instantly and lacquer and water-based finish fairly quickly, so be very careful if you use alcohol for cleaning.
Lacquer thinner and acetone thin and clean up all solvent-based lacquer products. These solvents can damage all wood finishes, so don’t use them for cleaning.
Super lacquer retarder containing butyl cellosolve, also called ethylene glycol mono-butyl ether or “EB,” evaporates very slowly, so it can be used to slow the drying of lacquers, shellac and water-based finishes. But use very little (less than 5%) or the finish may take days to fully dry.
Toluene (tolulol) and xylene (xylol) have very little use in wood finishing, though they can be very effective for cleaning grease from metal.
Paste wax is easy enough to apply. Simply wipe it on the surface. The problem comes in removing the excess wax, because if you don’t remove all the excess, it leaves a smear rather than a shine.
The trick is to use a clean cloth or lambs-wool pad for the removal—with the emphasis on “clean.” If you continue to wipe off the excess with a cloth or pad that has become loaded with wax, you will just be moving the wax around the surface rather than transferring it to the cloth or pad.
So, whenever the cloth or pad become loaded with wax, refold the cloth to a clean area or replace the cloth or pad with a clean one.
To make removal easier, apply the wax thin to begin with. The easy way to do this is to wrap the paste wax in a cloth so that all that is being applied is the wax that seeps through the cloth.
See how many words you can find. Look for words horizontally, vertically, and diagonally, top down, or bottom up. You can print this page, including the puzzle, work offline, and then highlight words as you find them.
The hidden message is: A Flawless Painted Finish
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