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Refinishing Furniture is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. Mineral spirits and lacquer thinners can be used as degreaser as well. Lacquer thinner is a generic name made up of many different solvents. It can refer to anything used to thin paint. It makes the varnish easier to apply and quicker to dry. We would suggest doing a bit of practice using it – thinning it with the MSA Solvent as needed, trying different brushes, etc – to minimize any potential issues. A wiping varnish requires ten, twelve, or more coats to give a good solid coat for your project. It may soften slightly if a small amount of mineral spirits is added. Sure, you will be applying thinner coats, and they may appear to dry faster, but you will also have to apply more coats. The amount of thinner necessary varies with brands. As stated above, paint thinners are actually a form of Type II mineral spirits. You may choose to thin oil-based polyurethanes with mineral spirits or naphtha, but for most applications, this is not necessary; check the manufacturer's recommendations on the product label. Answer: Use paint thinner, or mineral spirits, to clean the oil-based paint from your sprayer. Any of these common finishes may need to be thinned, depending on the conditions in your workshop and the final look that you want for your project. The Problems. Apply a Re-touch varnish – Re-touch varnish is a standard Dammar varnish that has been diluted with Turpentine by the manufacturer. Keep out of reach of children. (A 2-lb. Try your solution on some extra scraps of wood first, to make sure that is yielding the look you want to have for your project. Check and see what the recommended number of coats is when the product is at its full strength, and then add two or three extra coats beyond that. Stir the polyurethane well, then combine it with the mineral spirits in a glass jar or plastic bucket. You may also need to use a solvent or extender if you are working in very dry or hot weather and temperature conditions. However, a brush-on finish that has only been moderately thinned may require fewer coats. Various chemicals are used in its production so it is not entirely safe. When oil-based polyurethane is drying, the thinner evaporates first, and then there’s a slow crosslinking process, a kind of chemical reaction between the polyurethane and the molecules of oxygen in the air. Glass Bottles that seal completely. It is also best to work with gloves and a mask so no chemicals enter your skin or lungs. Specializing in building and renovating homes, Thomas Luttrell has worked in homebuilding since 2002. This is any varnish that has been diluted with mineral spirits. One type, called Type II, is odorless and fairly common as paint thinner. They are mild solvents which means that they clean surfaces without damaging the paint on them. You can either create a weak dye and apply it straight onto the wood or you can actually add the tint to the poly. Both clear and amber shellac may be used at container consistency. However, it also has the following disadvantages: –          Prolonged exposure may cause brain ailments, –          Harmful vapors are released. Since you are laying on thin layers, you can see exactly when you need to stop, when the coat is thick enough to provide protection but not so thick that it makes the object you’re treating look too plastic. In some cases, you might find it helpful to thin out the type of finish you are using, such as polyurethane finish. Oil-based primers require mineral spirits for thinning and cleanup. Thank you for sharing your methodology on wipe-on poly. Be sure to purchase a high-quality type of polyurethane with good ratings and reviews. He also holds a bachelor's degree in English from Iowa University. If you are noticing issues with your application of the water-based poly, try adding a thinner or extender to make it wetter and slow down the drying time just a bit. They are designed to momentarily change paint’s chemical structures and then evaporate when the paint dries. Test the substance on scrap wood. It is therefore important to check that the product you are buying is made specifically for the purpose that you are going to use it with. “cuts” of shellac refer to the dilution. TransTint Honey Amber is one option that some woodworkers like to use. The more coats you apply, the more durable the finish will be once it’s cured. Like the other two mentioned above, lacquer thinners are petroleum-based solvents that are used to dissolve, dilute, and clean surfaces and paintbrushes. It is also used for thinning both interior and exterior oil-based varnishes, oil-based paint and can be used in wiping wood stains. Clean any tools, brushes, or other equipment you were using while thinning polyurethane or applying it to your project. Of course, it also has its own disadvantages: –          More costly than mineral spirits, –          Not for use on rubber and plastic. Some experts recommend thinning down your oil-based poly varnish with mineral spirits to keep that plastic-like surface from occurring. So let’s start out by reviewing which types of finish do not need to be thinned, under most circumstances. When working with mineral spirits make sure to work in a well-ventilated area to avoid prolonged exposure. 3- Removes Tar. Mineral spirits (paint thinner): only to be used for thinning polyurethane and thining oil based stain and varnish. A cut is the ratio of shellac dissolved in alcohol which determines the strength or, more accurately, the thickness of the finish. Paint thinners can be used to remove oil-based paints and clean various things but unlike mineral spirits, they can’t be mixed with painting mediums. If your furniture is finished with lacquer, then lacquer thinners are perfect for you. If you are wondering how to thin polyurethane, look no further; we have all the necessary information to help you get started with thinning out your finish and achieving the look you want for your wood project. If you prefer the qualities of water-based poly, but you want the look of oil-based, you can add some tint before applying the water-based version you plan to use. Then, pour half of your chosen thinner into your paint and stir thoroughly. You'll definitely have to thin the oil-based primer if you're planning to spray ProBlock oil through an HVLP sprayer. If you want to make paint thinner, try using mineral spirits or acetone, which you can purchase from a hardware store. Carefully read all directions prior to use. Marc, I have a 24X24 maple butcher block that is 13in thick. If you are using hardwax oils, you will probably not need to add any kind of thinner. You can use a ten percent additive of mineral spirits, but be sure that you are operating within the rules for safe usage for your local area. Required fields are marked *. Some lacquer thinners are sold specifically for clean up while others can be solely for thinning. –          Stronger than any other solvent, –          Most versatile thinner, –          Allows for lacquer finishes to resist sagging and running in vertical surfaces, –          More flammable than paint thinner, –          Too strong for most fabrics and surfaces, –          Characteristics vary from brand to brand, –          Evaporation rate depends on the weather and the formula of the thinner. In fact, it is often confused to be the same as lacquer thinner or mineral spirits. cut simply means 2 pounds of dry shellac flakes were dissolved in one gallon of alcohol.) I had problems with crazy orange peel (even with thinning), coverage, curing, and durability. Although this may be the case, they are still very much different from each other. Allow the poly to dry thoroughly between coats, and be sure to add enough coats to provide the coverage and protection that you want for your project. Mineral spirits should break down the wax, but it sounds like it isn't working for you. Lacquer thinner is generic, which means that not all of them will give the same results. : Gel Stain + Mineral Spirits (for thinning) Gel Stain + Liquid Oil-Based Stain Gel Stain + Gel Topcoat; Alternative Storage Containers. There are many different kinds of mineral spirits so they are divided into types and classes. Mineral spirits, also known as Stoddard solvent, petroleum spirit, or white spirit, are a petroleum-based single solvent that are sometimes used as a substitute for turpentine in thinning paint and cleaning surfaces and paintbrushes. This thinner mixture yields a wiping varnish that will yield a “hand-rubbed” look. You can buy a commercial blend or make your own using a non-critical ratio of 1:1 or 1:2 (mineral spirits to varnish). Not for sale in California. If the product calls for mineral spirits (paint thinner) as a clean-up solution, or lists "petroleum distillate" as an ingredient, it is an oil stain. Here are some steps you can take to protect yourself when you are thinning polyurethane. Paint thinners and mineral spirits can be used in practically the same things but paint thinners are a tad more specific on the things that they can be used on. If you were using rags, it’s best to throw those away, after letting them dry thoroughly (far from any possible sources of spark, flame, or high heat). This means that the formula for one brand of lacquer thinner may not be the same as the other. Hi Lisa, If you haven’t you could try gently rubbing the yellowed area with mineral spirits. Shellac is also used as a barrier coat between a colored glaze layer and the final topcoat. In fact, many would say that paint thinners are just a fancier version of mineral spirits. Now we are getting down to the practical steps you need to take to thin out polyurethane. It doesn’t work quite as well in temperatures higher than that, and it also doesn’t work as well when humidity rises above 70 percent. Helpful Tips: Do not use as a general purpose cleaner. Most finishes that have a water base are already thin enough. Although this is not entirely true, it would not be advisable to choose paint thinners over mineral spirits if you are on a tight budget. Keep in mind that the mineral spirits you will be using to thin polyurethane can cause skin irritation, so you should also wear long sleeves if possible and avoid spilling these substances on your skin. 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