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Thread: Laquer spray for turnings

  1. #1
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    Laquer spray for turnings

    The last time I bought a can of Laquer was from a online vendor and I purchased Behlan's Gloss Laquer. Currently, I am waiting on my hydraulic hose to arrive so I can complete my spraying system and hook everything up.

    In the meantime I thought I would pick up a can of Laquer so I have it when I need it. To my suprise neither HD or Lowes carries Laquer in quarts or gallons. The store paint guy told me that they do not carry it because of the VOC laws in california make it to difficult for retailers to be able to carry it............Did not make alot of sense to me because Sherwinn Williamns and Tru-Tone both carry canned laquer (only one brand at each store) There seems to be very few paint stores that carry canned laquer. The salesman at Tru-Tone told me that even then it has to have a lower VOC in order to carry and sell it in California. Tru-Tone only Carries Mohawk brand but does carry it in satin,semi and gloss and only in gallon cans.

    So I thought I would try out the Mohawk brand because it has great reviews and sprays nicely with little thinning............so I read......... Ok so When talking to the guy at Tru-Tone he became anoyed when I said I usually cut it 50/50 with laquer thinner for sealing then when filled to my satisfaction I was cutting it with 1/4 laquer thinner for spraying. So.......crazy me I asked him why he seemed bothered by my method..............He told me I was doing my finishing all wrong.

    Ok, I thought...... and im no expert in finishing so ill bite.......So I asked how is it that im doing it wrong? He explained to me that by law I should not be cutting it at all with Laquer Thinner and I should be using Acetone instead and that it is the law...........and he sure was nice enough to point out he carried acetone to............also more expensive than laquer thinner.............what a nice guy............I told him thank you for the advice and ill just take the Laquer for now..........makes you wonder why HD and Lowes sell Laquer thinner in quarts and gallons both hugh?

    He also said that all the pros are using a inline Devilbiss filter near there spray guns for added filtration and offered to sell me one at a discount (determined to sell me something else i guess).......At first I was going to pass on it but then thinking I could use it with the degraded regulator from HF until I get my setup going so I asked how much...........$6.00...........yeah ok ill take one.......
    See Pic below........I hooked it up to my HF little one and it works well I guess for the price..............

    Final Note on the Laquer - If I want higher grade laquer ill have to buy it mail order I guess and even then ill have to find a vendor that will ship to Calif........At some point I want to spray the insturment grade I was reading about but i guess ill have to have it smuggled in. Ohhhhh and for the record - In My Opinion Laquer thinner sprays easier and better than Acetone.

    Im sure someone on here can explain the VOC thing better than I just did and I would be interested to know more because it could not be explained very well by anyone I asked other than its illegal.......
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Devilbiss-1.jpg   Devilbiss-2.jpg  
    First you have to learn the rules - Beginner
    Then you have to learn advanced rules - Professional
    Then you disregard the rules - This takes you to the master level................

  2. #2
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    I'm not much help on this one, Dan. The only true lacquer I've sprayed has been the spraycan stuff. Fortunately, both Home Depot and Lowe's still carry it. I have sprayed USL from Target Coatings. (Now replaced by their EM6000 product.) It's a waterborne acrylic lacquer that will "burn in" to previous coats like a solvent-based lacquer.

    Like you, I wasn't aware that lacquer thinner is not for thinning lacquer.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

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  3. #3
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    you have the pleasure of living in a state with one of the strictest environmental laws. The joke out here on the east coast when we read the warning lables that say "Warning: this product known to the state of California to cause reproductive harm to laboratory animals". so as long as you are not a laboratory animal in the state of California you can still have children..... OK Humor aside.
    There is a link below explaining VOC's. The reason they are allowing acetone is that it has very low to no VOC's it is actually considered a "green" product as it leaves no residue when it evaporates. Not the case with lacquer thinner or any of the others.
    As far as thinning for final spraying try reducing your lacqer thinner to 10 percent. That was all we ever needed when spraying precat lacquer.
    The other solution would be to switch over to the new waterbornes like Vaughn is using. EM6000 is a nice product. Also, check out General Finishes waterborne products. Both companies will give you a very nice finish.

    http://www.epa.gov/iaq/voc.html

  4. #4
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    How much of the bad stuff evaporated into the atmosphere for each gallon you buy? If you use Nitrocellulose (solvent) lacquer, that may be 30% solids, 70% solvent, you are putting a lot into the air. If you are cutting to 50-50, you are adding 100% solvent, your solids drop to 15%, your bad stuff rises to 85%, but the total bad stuff per gallon of finish goes from 0.7 gallons to 1.7 gallons for the same amount of finish. That makes it illegal in California.

    How bad is the bad stuff? It is NOT the ozone layer destroying refrigerants/CFC/halon/etc. It is closer to the exhaust gasses from a car. Not nice, but not much worse than driving around looking for the finish you need.

    How good is Nitrocellulose lacquer? Like paint thinner, the product is mature, so brands hardly matter. Sure Deft can be brushed, but Deft is the same old stuff with a little retarder to make it dry enough slower that it can be brushed. Still can be sprayed, too, but it will dry a little slower. However, plain NC lacquer is NOT approved by the Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturers Association (KCMA) - too many current kitchen solvents will stain, soften, or mark it.

    Catalyzed NC lacquer still has burn in, but over the week or two after it is sprayed the catalyst hardens (I believe the correct term is cross links) the lacquer, so it is less vulnerable to chemicals. Some say it is even impervious to finger nail polish remover (basically lacquer thinner) but I haven't tested that.

    I loved using NC lacquer - over the years went through 50-100 gallons. But multiple friends on forums and locally kept pushing me to try water-based USL. Finally to shut them up, I did try it. Darn, I hate it when someone proves me wrong. Based on the number of empty 5 gallon cans around my shop, I appear to have passed 50 gallons of Target Coatings USL, or the current version, Emtech 6000. Why? Because it gives me a better finish easier. It is more expensive per gallon, but the percent solids are higher, so I need fewer gallons. It is ready to spray - no thinner, but you can thin it with a little water if you want a thinner sealer coat. It has full burn-in, so it doesn't matter whether you do multiple thin coats or fewer heavy coats - you will never get a witness line when rubbing the finish out. You don't have to sand between coats unless you are correcting your spraying (getting rid of a drool or a speck of dust). It is extremely easy to clean up - I have timed the clean-up of my spray guns between 45 and 90 seconds. The finish is KCMA approved - even better test results than catalyzed lacquer.

    The only disadvantage that I have found is on the lathe (yup, it had to be there). With solvent lacquer, I can dip a rag and wipe on the turning, then speed up the lathe and let the heat of the rag force the evaporation of the solvent... all it takes to cure NC lacquer is evaporating the solvent - there is no chemical reaction. The water based lacquer burns in and cures with a chemical reaction that starts when the water is gone. So I don't use it as my "rub on" finish on the lathe.

    When I have looked at the General Finishes Water based lacquer (even the professional line) it still recommends sanding between coats for adhesion, which means it does not have burn in. Sorry, no cigar.

    See my web page on Lacquer at
    www.solowoodworker.com/wood/lacquer.html
    Last edited by Charlie Plesums; 08-04-2011 at 12:58 PM.
    Charlie Plesums, Austin Texas
    (Retired early to become a custom furnituremaker)
    Lots of my free advice at www.solowoodworker.com

  5. #5
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    Charlie.......... I read your thread on Lacquer and it is very interesting article and would suggest that others on the forum read it (link at the bottom).

    I will in the future try the Emtech 6000 but for now I have a gallon of the Mohawak WW gloss and a friend sending me some Campbell Lacquer and Deft gloss to try out in cans - I have not tried any of these yet because I have not had the time but I try the mohawk out and it works ok. Tried it on a small turning but I still favored the Behlens - possibly as you said it may have had more solids in it.
    I like spraying and have been adding my own tone to it at times so I look forward to learning more about spraying - I like lacquer it drys fast and I can really like the look of it................

    Thanks for any information and help..............very good articles you have...

    Dan
    First you have to learn the rules - Beginner
    Then you have to learn advanced rules - Professional
    Then you disregard the rules - This takes you to the master level................

  6. #6
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    Not a comment on lacquer but for most spraying I use this. Pressures up with your air compressor or co2 cartridge. Empty and clean out when done. I have been using the same one for 20+ years will all types of finishes. I do also have an hvlp for large jobs but havenít used it in a couple of years.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Can Air.jpg  
    All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent. Thomas Jefferson

  7. #7
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    Mike............I found one somewhat like what you have posted below.

    http://www.speedysupply.biz/itemleve...8&categoryid=4

    I do not have one but I would think they could clog up easy on you and not sure how easy it would be to unplug - wondering if standard spray nozzles would fit.................anyway seems like a great idea for small projects etc......You have owned it along time so ill guess it must be easy to clean out if you plug it up................Dan
    First you have to learn the rules - Beginner
    Then you have to learn advanced rules - Professional
    Then you disregard the rules - This takes you to the master level................

  8. #8
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    Dan,
    I have not had a problem. Unless I am going to use it again soon I spray the finish back into the can then take the top off. Pour a couple of ounces of thinner in the can and recharge, shake, and spray into a small jar. Then put the nozzle in with the thinner.
    You can just pull the nozzle and drop it into a small jar with thinner. That is what I do if I am fairly sure going to use it again within a week or so. Sounds like a lot of trouble but it only takes a couple of minutes.
    All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent. Thomas Jefferson

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Mosley View Post
    Charlie.......... I read your thread on Lacquer and it is very interesting article and would suggest that others on the forum read it (link at the bottom).

    I will in the future try the Emtech 6000 but for now I have a gallon of the Mohawak WW gloss and a friend sending me some Campbell Lacquer and Deft gloss to try out in cans - I have not tried any of these yet because I have not had the time but I try the mohawk out and it works ok. Tried it on a small turning but I still favored the Behlens - possibly as you said it may have had more solids in it.
    I like spraying and have been adding my own tone to it at times so I look forward to learning more about spraying - I like lacquer it drys fast and I can really like the look of it................

    Thanks for any information and help..............very good articles you have...

    Dan
    I am not familiar with Mohawk WW - if it is solvent based, then I expect it is the same as Campbell and Deft (except Deft has a tiny amount of retarder to slow the dry time so it can also be brushed). I suspect Behlens is solvent based, so basically the same.

    Bottom line, virtually no difference between brands of solvent lacquer, just as no difference between brands of paint thinner. Water base finishes are new technology so big difference between brands. I like Target Coatings, but always feel better with an alternative available. I haven't found any other brand that has "burn in" with their water based lacquer. I tried Fuhr, and got horrible results. I tried Minwax Polycrylic - it was okay but I won't buy more (I didn't dump it like I did the $60 can of Fuhr)
    Charlie Plesums, Austin Texas
    (Retired early to become a custom furnituremaker)
    Lots of my free advice at www.solowoodworker.com

  10. #10
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    Charlie I used to use Target Coatings as well. Then I switched to General Finishes. Although I havent used their waterborne lacquer I have been using their poly porducts (the endurovar and enduro pigmented poly) Their instructions do say to sand between coats but I had been told by one of the reps that if there had been no contamination I could apply up to 3 coats in a day and not have to sand between them. I have done this on floors and stairs where there is heavy traffic and the surfaces have shown no signs of wear or adhesion issues.
    Their poly cures through oxidation and the endurovar is an alkyd product in a waterbased emulsion.
    I also noticed that their waterborne lacquer will not yellow which is a plus if you need a clear finish.
    When I finish cabinetry I almost always sand between coats as I think you just get a better finish and look. It doesnt build up and start to look like plastic which I have found with Targets products.
    this is just my experience with both companies that I wanted to share.

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