Woodfinishers Weblog

Wood finishing forum for professional finishers

The wood finishing industry of today


My name is Greg Saunders and I am the field Rep for Annex Paint and Lacquer in Reseda California. I have had this Blog running for several years and have given it less attention these last few years but with that being said, I’ll be spending some more time posting articles and reviews that you can have access to.

The California Wood finisher is a unique and rare creature whose technology, materials and operating climate are changing on him all the time ( as if running a business isn’t hard enough) I have started this blog to log the various changes and developments in the wood finishing industry and to document all of the tips and tricks I have come to learn over the years.  Your input is welcome, Ask a question and I will get you an answer. If I don’t know the answer I have the names and numbers of chemists, the AQMD reps and Manufactures in my phone book I’ll  get the information and publish it for all to have.

 Specifically I service the wood finishing industry, cabinet and furniture shops, large and small in the southern California.  We sell and deliver several different brands of Lacquer, Pre catalyzed lacquer, Conversion varnishes, polyurethanes, polyesters, and stains in both water base materials as well as nitrocellulose based materials. We carry CIC, Gemini, Pinnacle, Vanderbilt, Express Old masters stains and a host of others. If we don’t have a product you are looking for it we can often get it for you. We custom match and tint stains and Lacquers as well we  provide Free delivery and on site assistance to our customers.  

Wood working and finishing is a passion of mine and I enjoy what I do. for this reason I have gotten this blog going to share tips tricks and useful information to my customers and all those that are wood workers whether  professional or Hobbyists.  

Visit our new on line catalog, we are building it as we go you are welcome to place orders and leave comments : www.annexpaint.com

California is a unique  region for the wood finisher, we have the strictest regulations in the union such that most of the major national manufactures don’t have much reality on how to apply their own Low VOC materials that are specifically manufactured for this region.

Going green is becoming a reality as the quality of water-based products comes around to the lacquer standards. While the various authorities a talking about tightening even further the regulations on the allowable standards for VOC compliance.  Spraying Water based materials is a different kettle of fish requiring a certain amount of education and the proper equipment. I will be featuring information on how to use these new materials as well as what I am finding  when these newer materials are applied in the fields

Add all of the above factors together with the current economy and we find our selves in challenging times.  In future posts I’ll be discussing the various products I come across and how they perform. I welcome your comments, suggestions and questions.


Greg Saunders


September 21, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized, Wood finishing | , , , , , , , ,


  1. Hi Greg

    I just wanted to post an thank you for all your help locating a finish for our product. Your knowledge on finishes, enthusiasm for helping, and direction to a manufacturer are unequaled in the industry and much appreciated. Even though our product is not wood, you were willing to help and able to direct us to a terrific manufacturer.
    You are the best!

    sincerely yours,

    Linda Paul
    Linda Paul Studio

    Comment by Linda Paul | September 11, 2009

  2. Thanks Linda,

    I enjoy my job and have a lot of fun educating people in the business. The business of coatings in general is about 90% technology and the rest is art. You have to understand the technology so you can do your best art work. There is no excuse for not knowing your tools, but once you are there you can produce the Sistine chapel. if you want (Can you imagine the troubles Mike had with his clear coats at the time!)

    There is always room for another artist on this planet.


    Comment by Greg Saunders | September 15, 2009

  3. I am trying to restore a chess table that my dad made 30-40 years ago. It is a beautiful piece – individual tiles of wood (reclaimed from an old ship, I believe), finished to “white” or “black” with different amounts of time with a blow-torch. On top is clear coat of some glass-like finish (epoxy?, polyurethane?, acrylic?), about 1/8″ thick. It has some scratches and damage to the coating, and when the surface is dry it looks cloudy. When it is wet, it shows the beauty of the wood, so I think the issue is due to refraction at the surface. I would like to add a layer of an appropriate coating to smooth it out, fix the damage, and remove the cloudiness. I have done some sanding (60 grit, then 220) to prep the surface, but I am afraid to go down to bare wood, as it would ruin the effect of the blow-torch on the wood. What other prep should I do, and what can I add to the surface?
    Also – I would like to use as environmentally-friendly a product as possible, and I have no experience in wood-working.
    I can send a picture if that helps.

    Comment by David Magnuson | November 24, 2010

  4. Hi David,

    Sounds like a great project I would love to see some pictures. the first thing would be to figure out what sort of coating is on there now I’m guessing that you dad is not available to ask. but perhaps there is someone else who might know, sounds like he was a skilled crafts man and so might have done other work in the same materials. The next test you can do somewhere on the board on the back perhaps is rub the finish with some acetone, if that softens it up then you most likely have a lacquer based product if it doesn’t then you are looking at a urethane or perhaps polyester. of course that is a test you do in the most hidden corner in the event it does melt the finish. I don’t think it would be acrylic. if it hasn’t yellowed I would guess that it isn’t an epoxy either.

    You might be able to get away with some environmentally friendly product but they generally don’t work that well over solvent based products. that being said, I have one that I would probably recommend and that is the CIC Centurion water based polyurethane, it is a two component mix and is a hybrid of water based materials and solvent. I would give that the best chance of adhering well. You would want to spray this on for the best finish. you can find that on the annexpaint.com web site. are you looking to put a high polish finish on this?

    I would suggest you search out a few furniture restoration shops and take the board in to them for some eyes on evaluation. you might be able to find someone with whome you can work with: you do the prep and supply the materials and have them spray it on for you.
    send some pictures and keep me in the loop I would love to see how it turns out.


    Comment by Greg Saunders | November 24, 2010

  5. This is a great little blog I can’t believe that I didn’t stumble upon it before

    Comment by Manasa Majumdar | August 4, 2012

  6. thanks, I have been a little remiss in keeping it up however I have a few new things to add that will be of interest.

    Comment by Greg Saunders | August 4, 2012

  7. I every time emailed this webpage post page to all my associates, because if like to
    read it then my contacts will too.

    Comment by breakers yard | August 21, 2012

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