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Tips for Spraying out the CIC Centurion Conversion Varnish

I have been using the CIC conversion varnish now for over a year and have been very impressed with both the product and the manufacture. There are a few things to know about this product that I have come to learn over the course of the last year of handling the material that I wanted to pass along. One of the values of this Blog is that I can document the things I have to tell people over and over, I’m sure that I’ll continue to go into shops and explain the same thing to people but it helps that I can refer people to an article on the matter.

 The Centurion Water based conversion varnish is a water based product that can be thinned with water (imagine that!). As with any coating product you can over thin the material. There are essentially 4 things in a coating: resins, binders, solvents, and pigment (color). The resin is the paint itself; the binders are the chemicals that hold all the various parts together, the glue if you will. The solvents are the chemicals that keep the paint liquid until you apply it. Once you have applied the paint, the solvents evaporate leaving a hard coat of paint. Colorants do just that add the color, different paints require different colorants or pigments,

 So now, all these things work together, the various components of a coating have different chemical properties and different tolerances. You can only put so much pigment in a clear lacquer before you have gone too far and your final product will be chalky and flat or might not stick because there is too much of the dye powder and not enough of the binder to hold it all together. The same goes with solvents you can thin down a lacquer with lacquer thinner to a point where there is not enough binder and the chemicals no longer work together. Think of a bag of concrete add a little water and you have a drive way, too much water and you have a mud pit.

 Ok the basic theory now being covered, you thin the CIC Centurion water based conversion coating with water, no more than 20 % and that is pushing the limits. Generally you thin a coating so that it will spray or roll out well if you have to thin it further than that you are using the wrong equipment and most likely need to get a larger tip size for you spay gun. (see the article form Thomas Craven on spray techniques elsewhere in this Blog)

 Here is a picture of what can occur when you over thin the water based Conversion varnish (or any water based product for that matter)

An orange peel so bad you don’t know what you are looking at. What has happened here is that there is too much water and so the binders can hold it all together. This project had to be stripped down and re-done.

FYI, sometimes the material comes to you in the can and it is very thick and has to be thinned down.  Ok that’s is something that you would expect to have to do and here is how you do it:

1.   The first thing you have to do is have the right equipment, if you are trying to spray a water based product with a small tip size then you will be forced to over thin the material to get it out of the gun. Your regular lacquer and automotive gun is usually a 1.4mm which is too small.  I have use a 1.7 mm tip in an HVLP cup gun with success but prefer to use a 2.0 mm. The Centurion works great out of an airless or better yet the air assisted airless, don’t use the extra fine tip as you might “Sheer” the material (a term use to describe what happens when the material is subjected to too much pressure) your finish will come out grainy as if you had fine sand al through your material. 

 2. The next thing to do is make sure that you material is not cold, the warmer the material is the more fluid or less viscous it will be factually for every 10 degrees warmer your lacquer (water based or solvent ) will be 10% thinner.

That mean that if you leave a bucket on the concrete floor of your shop and overnight it cools the material down to 50 degrees, you can make it 20% thinner by warming it up to 70 degrees.  Now you can reduce your labor by warming your materials as you won’t over thin the stuff and have to put on more coats to make up for all the thinner that is going to evaporate on you. you would also be saving money on thinners as well. if you are using water based materials, water is cheap Labor however is not.  

With water based materials you can actually put them in the micro wave and warm them up this is not a practical thing. Keeping the buckets off the concrete is one step. Pulling your cans in to the office overnight is another, generally the office is climate controlled. Grainger’s sells bucket heaters that belt around a 5 gallon pail, others have wrapped a heating blanket around a pail. Warm it up, no hotter than about 90 degrees. ( if you have decided to apply this principle to a solvent base material don’t blow yourself up with a jury rigged heater)

3. Sill a little lumpy with your gun spitting material instead of laying on and even coating… thin it another 5%.

4. If it  is still lumpy and or not flowing out at this point it to add a small amount of retarder. Here is an example of that scenario this is a Centurion Conversion varnish that has been tinted Brown, with the all the Pigment the materials are not flowing out.

 

Looks pretty crappy: what solved this was adding lacquer retarder. A mixture of 50/50 water and glycol either EB: Lacquer retarder.

I use to say that you could use any ol’ lacquer retarder, that however is not the case. Lacquer retarders like Margaritas are not all made the same. The Valspar Lacquer retarder when mixed with water foams up and turn into a clear solution, there are chemicals possibly acetone in there mix that do not mix well with water, that’s not to say that it is a poor retarder for lacquer.  Some companies make water based lacquer retarders

If you get the MSDS and it say the primary ingredient is glycol either EB then you are set. A.G. Layne, Sunny side, CIC and other manufactures have retarders that are primarily Glycol EB, Any retarder when mixed 50/50 with water and goes into solution will work.  

5. You mix the lacquer retarder 50/50 with water and then add no more than 5% of that to your centurion conversion varnish. The more you add the longer its is going to take to dry. When you mix this up make sure that it has gone into solution before you add it to your material, and when you do add it stir the conversion varnish while adding it slowly. Dump it in too quickly and you can “Shock” the material. Meaning that the two materials will react against each other and separate  

 In the first picture above, the walnut the job. The containers of conversion varnish that has been over thinned were allowed to thicken up by letting some of the excess water evaporate off and then they were retarded with the above mentioned 50/50 mix of water and retarder and the job came out fine.  

If done correctly you’ll have a rock hard finish that is as smooth as a good nitrocellulose lacquer finish.     

Ok, That’s my story and I’m sticking to it of you have questions feel free to send me a line.

Greg Saunders

Annex Paint

http://www.annexpaint.com

December 23, 2010 Posted by | CIC Centurion, water based Conversion Varnish, Conversion varnish | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Video Demo of water base conversion varnish chemical resistance

I have become a big fan of the water based conversion varnish and as you may have noticed in the previous posts and comments I have made on the subject.

Following is a short video we did demonstrating the chemical resistance of the CIC Centurion Water based Conversion varnish. You might note that the 6 inch piece of crown molding we are doing the chemical test on is one of the panels I had in my shower last year for a few months to test the water resistance. Since that time I have carried that panel around to show people how tough this product really is. Another good thing about the CIC product is that I can ship it across the country as it is not a hazardous material.

December 3, 2010 Posted by | CIC Centurion, water based Conversion Varnish, Conversion varnish, Water based Lacquers, Wood finishing | Leave a comment

CIC, Centurion Water based stain and glaze system

 

I have been remiss with keeping the blog up dated regularly but it has not been for lack exciting things happening in the finishing world. There are several Blog posting on the CIC water based conversion varnish. That product has continued to perform well. If you have been following the Water base conversion varnish postings It has been perfected from the original version. With the success of the product I was persuaded to bring in the other CIC products. Having had the Renner stain system I was not particularly interested in another waterbased system however when I saw the workability of the glaze base I was duly impressed and so conceded to bring the line of water based stains and glazes in to the store.

Unlike the Renner stain and glaze system the CIC Centurion system uses a concentrate dye stain and then a base solution you add the dyes to. As well the Renner system is a 100% zero VOC system where as the CIC system is a little over 200 grams per liter VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds). That being said there is no smell and no fire hazard. The Renner system is a spray only system and the CIC Centurion system is a combination wipe and spray system which is very convenient.

Ok enough of the side chair commentary, the CIC Centurion stain and glaze system is a phenomenal product it is a water base that looks and acts like and oil based stain. There is a stain base and glaze base into which you add  the CIC Centurion dye stains to make you colors and shades  there are 5 different colorants in the system Yellow, Red, Brown, black and Orange. If you need something beyond that you can add any other Water based colorant you want; Pro-line colorants or professional water base Universal Tint Colorants (better known as UTCs) IF you want to turn it into a spray on stain just add water and spray. Applying the stain once you have mixed it you’ll notice that it acts like an oil based system, It doesn’t streak and or blotch You can squeeze your stain rag out over you work wait a minute and then wipe it out with no consequences heretofore if you did that with a dye stain you would have dark splotch you wouldn’t be able to pull out. 

When the CIC rep was pitching me on this system and I was very skeptical, I have on my shelves 4 different stain systems already, including two water based systems that perform reasonably well, one of them being the Renner system which here to fore was the best of the best as far as I was concerned and I really wasn’t interested in having yet another line to deal with.  I was talked into a Demo (this is what I do all day long) and boy I was impressed. Noteworthy, is that since I have been on the road demoing this CIC stain system to the local finishers I have sold the materials to every shop I have done the demo with.

In essence this is a stain and glaze system that acts and looks like it’s oil based counterparts. It has little or no order and dries quickly, for a water based product, the biggest drawback to water based systems are that they are temperature and humidity sensitive, meaning that the cooler and damper it is outside the longer your materials are  going to take to dry.

Following will be a few short video demos where you can see the product yourself.  If you have questions about  this material or any other coating system feel free to send me a line.

Greg Saunders

Annexpaint

November 9, 2010 Posted by | CIC Centurion, water based Conversion Varnish, Conversion varnish, Stains and glazes, Water based Lacquers, Wood finishing | , , , , , | Leave a comment

CIC’s LOW VOC Acrylic lacquer in action

The Rapidly expanding Church of Scientology recently renovated one of there  churches at 1413 L Ron Hubbard Way, Los Angeles  and in so doing wanted to use an environmentally friendly low VOC product that would not yellow and yet be tough enough to with stand the beating of  commercial wear and tear.

After a lot of testing they settled on the CIC acrylic lacquer it is nearly as hard  as a pre-catalyzed lacquer with out the toxic acids but  it doesn’t yellow as will all nitrocellulose lacquers.

 Additionally they needed something very clear that would highlight the Walnut veneer which was the theme of the cabinetry.

Here are some pictures of the wood work and the finish:

a phenomenal finishing job

It's a little hard to capture the clarity of this coating with a camera

June 5, 2010 Posted by | Acrylic Lacquer | 3 Comments

Sucess story using the Rexcell water based conversion varnish

Walnut Kitchen Island finished with W/B Conversion Varnish

 This is a story from  a gentleman who is a retired air force officer whose hobby is cabinet and furniture building, As you’ll see he is an incredible cabinet builder.

 As his shop is in his garage with limmetted space and no spray booth Dennis was interested in water born products but needed something that was super tough. I suggested the Rexcell  Water based Conversion varnish. As you will see it turn out stunningly beautiful.

Fore note: this product is no longer manufactured by Rexcell but is now being manufactured to spec by another American manufacturing company, the product is as good or better than before, It has been referred to as three different manufactures Renner, Rexcell and now CIC. It is all the same product, a water born Conversion Varnish.

Here’s is the Story Dirrect from Dennis : 

FIRST EXPERIENCE WITH WATER BASED FINISH

 I have been building wooden furniture and cabinets as a hobbyist for over forty years. Over this period I have sprayed, brushed and wiped on all the standard finishes that hobbyist woodworkers usually use. Because I’m in my upper sixties in age, I have looked upon the new water based finishes for wood with skepticism. I recently finished a kitchen island for my daughter’s new kitchen. It’s a walnut cabinet with a maple butcher block top. It measures 50 inches long by 30 inches wide by 36 inches high. And, I sprayed a water based conversion coating (called water based lacquer) for the protective finish. This was my first experience with a water based coating and I’m extremely pleased with the way it turned out. I chose it for it’s touted durability which was demonstrated to me by Greg Saunders, a sales representative for the Annex Company of Reseda, California. Greg showed me samples, coated with the product I used, that he placed in his home shower for approximately two months and the durability was impressive. ( You can see this test in another post on the Blog)

 The material I used is made by the Rexcel Company, and is a water based conversion varnish, meaning that it is tough enough for counter tops and moisture resistant for high moisture areas)

I used a Goldenstar HVLP air spray gun (Advertised as being especially for water based finishes)

( This is an inexpensive but quality spray gun that Annex paint sells)

Fluid orifice: 1.7mm (this size is recommended for this water based product)

Pressure required: 15-50 psi (I used 30 psi)

 I was spraying in 90 degree summer weather and therefore added 3 percent of regular lacquer retarder. Greg, the sales rep, said I could thin the product with water by about 10 percent but I used it full strength and it seemed to spray very well. I am used to spraying regular nitro cellulose lacquer and I used the very same technique with this water based lacquer. It appears milky in color when it first goes on but otherwise it sprays on like regular lacquer. You have to use the same caution on vertical surfaces as with regular lacquer. A good technique is to use a big piece of brown cardboard to adjust your spray volume and pattern before tackling your project.

 I sprayed three coats and sanded lightly between coats. I probably could have gotten by with only two coats. Remember, each coat of this water based finish lies on top of the previous coat. It doesn’t melt into the previous coat as with regular lacquer. As with regular lacquer, this product dries quickly and can be sanded within 20 minutes and recoated. It was hot and dry when I sprayed so weather conditions might alter the drying times. After the third coat, it was a bit too glossy for my preference so I waxed with a steel wool pad which resulted in a soft sheen that I was looking for. I’m totally happy with the way it turned out.

 I kept a bucket of water and a rag nearby while I was spraying. A couple of times when I got runs, I immediately wiped it off, let it dry, sanded lightly, and recoated. I really enjoyed the water clean up – of the runs and the clean-up of the spray equipment. A word here about clean-up – and this attests to the durability — if you wait until this finish dries, you can’t clean up with water – it takes acetone. I sprayed the first coat with my regular glasses on (plastic lenses). I got overspray on my glasses and I still haven’t gotten it off. However, acetone on my plastic lenses would probably not be smart.

 I made a silverware tray at the last-minute for one of the cabinet drawers and I brushed on two coats of finish with a foam brush. That went on very nicely too. Will I continue to use water based finishes? — definitely yes, especially for kitchen and bathroom furniture. Will I use it for living room furniture? – the jury is out, but I’m hoping to.   

Here is another picture of Dennis’ work. For note this stunningly beautiful Kitchen Island was built by Dennis for his daughter who recently returned from active service in the Military in Iraq.

Walnut cabinet finished with Rexcell water based conversion Varnish

 For his privacy, I have left out Dennis’s contact informations, However, you are welcome to comment on his work and ask any questions on this blog. If you are intersted in contacting Denis for custom work please send me an e-mail and I’ll foreward it on to him.

 As always if you have finnishing qustions you can leave me a comment here on the Blog or write to me dirrectly at : greg@annexpaint.com

February 12, 2010 Posted by | CIC Centurion, water based Conversion Varnish, Conversion varnish, Tips and Tricks, Water based Lacquers | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Is Rexcel Water based conversion coating flammable ?

I had a contractor ask  me the question is the conversion coating flammable as he was going to finish a wine cellar in a basement where there was a gas burning furnace. Normally when spraying lacquers on a job site you want to make sure that all open flames are extinguished Vapors sometimes being heaver then air can sprayed along the ground to a gas burning water heater and go boom –not good. Matt the contractor wanted to find a water based material that would not have this problem and was interested in the Rexcel conversion coating  the following is my response …

“The materials are not flammable However, they are potentially combustible, you should always spray in an area that is properly ventilated and I would, if at all possible turn off the furnace while spraying. Inert dust, such as saw dust or even flower can become explosive all by itself if there is a sufficient quantity of in suspended in the air. Like wise with a sealed room full of over spray and vapor.

The Rexcel conversion coating is water based but it does have volatile chemicals in it.  If for some reason you can’t turn off the furnace then ventilate the room so that your fumes are being sucked out of the room and not into the furnace.”

All that being said I doubt you would have a problem, but I don’t want to be the on that gets you blown up. What I have done personally in the past when confronted with such situations is to erect a temporary spay booth around the work with Plastic and 2X2s or something similar. Tape it to the ceiling and floor, Home depot sells zippers that you can tape on to the plastic and use as an entry and exit.  Then I would duct in (either with plastic or flex dusting you can also find at home depot) and air supply and an exhaust, I have built some pretty spiffy spray booths in some real swanky homes where the customers did not want to spell lacquers. You can put a A/C air filter on the exhaust side to catch particles before it goes out a window.   

 Let me know if that is helpful.

Greg Saunders

ANNEX PAINT

November 12, 2009 Posted by | CIC Centurion, water based Conversion Varnish, Conversion varnish, Tips and Tricks, Water based Lacquers | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Renner Acrylic lacquer -Tips for scuccess

 

This is a brief write-up from a finisher who has been successfuly using the Renner Low VOC Acrylic Lacquer

Dear Greg,

 As you requested I’m giving you a little write up on the Renner Low VOC Acrylic lacquer from that you have been supplying to me.

 I have been using the Renner Lacquer and really like this product.

 I wanted to detail some of the basic procedural points I employ when using this product that may help other people who use it:

  

  • I generally only need 2-3 coats of the Renner to get a beautiful finish. 2 coats are most common if you don’t thin the product. The product does not need to be thinned. I have thinned the Renner Acrylic lacquer but only on the final coat if you don’t wish to have any further build up than what I already have on the piece I am spraying. You shouldn’t this this any  more than about 5% per manufacture’s specs any way.

 

  • The key to spraying a good finish is having your gun set properly based on your spraying conditions ( mainly temperature and size and shape of the item you are spraying .) I generally have the PSI on my gun set between 20-40 no more than 40 psi. Then watch your spray in reflected light as you are spraying to ensure you have a wet coat over your whole job.

 

  • I have found that the Flattening agent in the Renner Lacquer tends to settle rapidly to the bottom of the can or spray gun. I have picked up a gun that I had sitting with the renner Acrylic lacquer in it for a few hours and sprayed it and the first thing that comes out is the white flattening past that has settled to the bottom of the cup. A light sand and then re-spray with the same product handled that for me. I have also had spots of white spit out of the gun these are just the flattening past that settled. You have to let the lacquer dry and then sand then off and re- shoot it. The over all handling is to stir and strain the materials well and then don’t let your gun sit for too long. If you use a pot system then stir the pot regularly. Shaking the materials well before you use them is also a good Idea. The flattening past goes back into solution very easily.  

 

  • I always test spray something before I lay on a coat and especially the final coat; I want toknow that the gun and materials are all dialed in before lay the materials on the final coat.

 

Hope this is helpful.

Tia D

 Tia has worked in a custom mill that produces a wide Varity of custom mill work that has been shipped and installed around the world. She has been applying high end finishes for about 4 years and is one of the best and most detail oriented people in the trade. I asked here for this little write up to help other customers with this product.  

  In addition to Tia’s Tips I wanted to add a few other characteristics about this material that I have found about it.

  •  This is an acrylic lacquer, the qualities of it are that it doesn’t yellow and it is nearly as hard as a Catalyzed lacquer, however, you can’t mix it with regular nitrocellulose lacquers. You have to keep these materials separate and do not mix them.
  •  You also don’t want to use this material over another lacquer it is self sealing and is used with it’s self spray in a light coat and lat that flash off and then your following coats to the desired build. You can glaze between coats.

 

If you have questions or comments send me a line I’m always interested in hearing what people are running in to.

 Best,

 Greg Saunders

Annex Sales Rep

greg@annexpaint.com

July 1, 2009 Posted by | Acrylic Lacquer, Finishing failures and the fix, Spray techniques, Tips and Tricks | , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Acrylic Lacquer: A new, low voc clear coating for wood.

    No two finishing lines are exactly the same. Nor are the finishing standards or production goals identical from facility to facility  or shop to shop. To satisfy a wide range of variables relating to application, curing, finish durability, appearance, environmental requirements, “green” sustainability initiatives, and cost, I have been on a constant search for the different coatings out in the market.  To this end we have brought in yet another product for our customers to use.

 

   First of for those who may not be  familure with some of the other products that are generally use in the world of finishing to day.

 

   Nitro cellulose Lacquer, the basics.


Nitrocellulose lacquer is made by mixing fast-drying solvents generally know as lacquer thinners with wood and cotton pulp containing cellulose that has been broken down by acids. A chemist working for the DuPont Chemical Company, is credited for inventing nitrocellulose lacquer in 1921. It was quickly picked up by Henry Ford for his mass-produced automobiles because finished cars could come off the assembly line faster. Not long afterward, nitrocellulose lacquer replaced shellac and oil-based varnishes and became the preferred finish and the industry standard for furniture and cabinet manufacturers.
: nitrocellulose lacquer is relatively inexpensive and dries quickly. The cured resins provide a reasonable protective layer of film over the wood. After the hard film cures, it rubs out well and provides it signature  smooth and silky surface that, Also, because it is an evaporative finish, each new coat of lacquer blends into all the previous coats, making it easy to repair.

The benefits for large and small production shops are considerable

The disadvantages to using nitrocellulose lacquer are also notable. The film yellows as it ages, and it can eventually shrink to the point of causing cracks (often called crazing) to form in the surface. Generally this occurs when you have over built the coating. As well, it does not hold up well in moisture i.e. your kitchen and bathroom.  Best results fore application are by spraying it on; but the overspray is highly flammable. (The same ingredients that go into nitrocellulose lacquers are also used in the manufacture of some explosives.)

Because it dries so quickly, when applied under conditions of high humidity, the lacquer film can trap condensed moisture and cause the finish film to appear cloudy — a problem referred to as blushing. You can overcome that finishing obstacle by adding a slower-drying thinner, called a retarder, which allows the moisture to escape before it gets trapped in the film.

 

  The need for something that doesn’t yellow and has a greater moisture tolerance.

 

Acrylic lacquer

 

  With the increased popularity of using unstained, light-colored woods (such as ash, birch, and maple), woodworkers and furniture manufacturers wanted to avoid the yellowing problems associated with nitrocellulose lacquer as it ages. The finishing industry responded by developing lacquers containing acrylic resins that are truly “water-white.” Acrylic resins go on crystal-clear and stay that way over time. The most widely used of these products is called CAB-acrylic lacquer, made with cellulose acetate butyrate and acrylic resins.: it is best applied by spray equipment, diluted with regular lacquer thinner to obtain the ideal spraying viscosity, and it is fast-drying. Acrylic lacquer is often used as a protective topcoat over colored pigment lacquers to make them wear better and to enhance their resistance to scratches.

Acrylic lacquer dries to a less brittle and more flexible film than that of nitrocellulose lacquer. It is also more expensive. Otherwise, the working properties are much the same

 

The acrylic Lacquer I like:

 

Renner the Italian wood coating manufacture has long provided me with exceptional water based products wanted to get into the American nitro cellulous lacquer market and released their “JL” series 161 VOC acrylic lacquer. Why they had to go and name it like that is beyond me, I would have preferred a snazzy marketing name that I could refer to it as, but, oh well.

 

Here are the qualities of this product:

 

Low VOC, more environmentally friendly and you can reduce it and still be compliant; a word of caution though, over thinning it has caused problems. Suggested total amount you thin it is not more than 5%.

 

Low Odor, It does have a smell but it’s not half as bad as other products.

 

Self Sealing, You don’t need a different product to seal this with. Best practice is to lay down two thin coat and then sand it as if it were a sanding sealer.

 

Non-Yellowing, what else do you say this doesn’t yellow as any regular lacquer or Pre catalyzed lacquer will.

 

Dies Quickly and Hard, I have had a hard time digging my nails in to this stuff, so it is almost as hard as a pre-cat if not harder. As well the acrylic is much more UV resistant,

 

18% Solids, this is a term that a lot of people don’t get but is a very important datum when evaluating a coating. Basically it’s thicker and so you get more square foot coverage. For reference the most common lacquer on the market is 11% solids it’s cheaper but you have to spray twice as much. For most shops there labor is more costly than there materials and so the few buck you save on materials ultimately cost you more in the long run.  

 

 

Cautions I have found:

 

Don’t over thin it. With a lacquer thinner, you can thin it 5 or 10% but not beyond that it will blush and do strange things. In essence when you thin some materials you are trying to increase the viscosity and make it come out of your spray gun better. If you over thin it you begin to alter the chemical make up and that is where you get into problems.

 

Don’t apply it over another manufactures sealer. A, you don’t need to use a sealer and B, the acrylics are not compatible with the lacquers when you do this the nitro-cellulous  in the earlier coating get re-wetted and then reacts with the acrylic resins and does weird stuff.

 

I now have several large manufactures using this product and having great successes with it.

 

If you are interested in this product give me a call if you have had successes or failure with this product I would like to know about them. One of the things I have learned in this business is that you test always. The greatest test of a coating is the test of time. How long did it last and where?

 

Best,

 

Greg  

 

 

 

 

April 22, 2009 Posted by | Acrylic Lacquer, Finishing failures and the fix | , , , , , | 65 Comments

Rexcel Water based conversion coating

Well it’s been  now nearly two months since I have placed the panels coated with the water based conversion varnish in the shower and they are still looking great with no signs of coating degradation or lamination. I would say that is pretty conclusive as to there water shedding abilities.

I had a minor issue with the product doing a little fish eye when I sprayed it over  a wet stain that had not been allowed to dry long enough. That is hardly any surprise and expect to find some contamination from the two different chemicals. I would suggest you let stains and glazes dry fully befor coating over the top of them. I was in a hurry trying to pack all I could in on a demonstrations and the fish eye was the result. ( which was worse than if I had just come back the next day!)

Interestingly, I now have a commercial entertainment park using this material to coat over their walls to act as a clear coat that is more durable and washable than the paint.  I have confirmed with the chemist who designed the material that is can be used out side and will hold up to the elements. It does not howerver have UV blocking agents in it so while the coating won’t yellow the wood or stains under the coating if they are not light fast will fade or yellow over time.

Greg

April 10, 2009 Posted by | CIC Centurion, water based Conversion Varnish, Conversion varnish, Water based Lacquers, Wood finishing | , , | 2 Comments

Questions about about what wood finishing product to use and where

I thought I would post an Email that was sent to me with a very valid question. Water Based polyurethanes versus Solvent conversion Varnish. Which is harder which is better?

 

Hello,

 I am in the process of building some pantry cabinets for my shore house.  I want to achieve a nice solid white finish. What would you recommend. I was thinking a white tinted conversion varnish applied w/ a hvlp conversion gun. Any other suggestions. I just need it to be more durable than paint. My other option was to paint then apply a waterborne polyurethane coating.

MR B.

Here is my response and answer to the question

 

Hi Mr. B,

 

You have several options. But what I would recommend is the water born poly or similar product. The conversion vanish is great stuff but is very tough on both the people who spray it and your equipment. The acid catalysis is rough on a body, if you do use it get a spray suit with a hood and wear a respirator. It does produce an incredible finish and fast. On the up side to the conversion varnish it is slightly clearer, but you are not doing a clear over a wood stain so that wouldn’t be a significant issue.

 

The down sides to the waterborne poly is it is a little trickier to spray and requires a larger tip size usually 1.7mm or bigger and you may need to experiment around first to get it to lay down smoothly, you may require a certain amount of retarder so that it will lay out smoothly, 3% is all you would want to add after that it will take forever to dry and will compromise the hardness. Once you have your solution dialed in its pretty simple.

 

I would get a good white primer on first otherwise you will be putting on more coats of the poly that you really need and they are harder to sand. Ellis 1262 water based white primer is a great one. Ellis is however a La company I don’t know where you are. Dunn Edwards and Sherman Williams both make decent primers; a good primer will save you time and money. Get the surface as smooth as you can with the primer then two top coats and you are done.

 

Don’t get a water based poly from Home depot or Lowes the “Minwax” polyurethane they sell isn’t that good and doesn’t do that well. I would get something used by professionals, Renner is what I sell  and I love the stuff this is an Italian manufactured material. Of course there are others that are very good as well. “General Finishes” have a few.

 

I have an incredible product that I really like that is somewhere in-between a water based poly and a Conversion varnish. It is manufactured especially for us by a company called Rexcel I have mention of it on my Blog. If you go to the Blog you can see the Rexcel listings I have there as well as the test I am running with the material. I have three panels I shot my self that are in my shower getting wet daily. So far they have been there a month and show no signs of water damage.  

 

 

  Anyway, that product is interior/exterior and harder than hell, you can also buff it to a mirror finish and is only about 54 bucks a gallon if you are interested in having some shipped. We can do that.  We have it white I believe, the one thing about white is there are several whites so you might want to do some testing first. You can also send us a color sample and we can match it. If you do that you have to provide a board with the color of your choosing that is at least 6”X6” that way we’ll have some thing to work with.

 

 

 Let me know what you decide and how it all comes out. If you are interested send some pictures with a little write up and I’ll post it on the Blog.  There is currently one posting from a guy that did his own kitchen with a water base lacquer and it turned out great. You should read that one as well as there are a few tips in there that are Key. One of which is the fact that all water base materials take longer to dry and longer to Cure. You have to let them cure for a few weeks before they get really hard. You can install them after a day or two but be very gentle with it for at least a week. The Conversion Varnish goes hard with a chemical reaction and will continue to cure for days and weeks but will get harder faster than the water based materials that cure at the rate of water evaporating. That by the way is determined by temperature and relative humidity. You can force dry then with heat and air flow but don’t cook them.

 

 

You got me on a roll here, did I answer your sufficiently?

 

Greg Saunders

ANNEX PAINT

818-439-9297

 

 

 

 

March 7, 2009 Posted by | Conversion varnish, polyurethane, Tips and Tricks, Water based Lacquers, Wood finishing | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment