Welcome to our first newsletter, we hope you find it useful.

As always, we’ve had a number of questions in this week, here’s a selection of them…

We were contacted by someone refinishing the handle on a hand plane; he had our Cellulose Sanding Sealer, Acrylic Lacquer and Friction Polish and wanted to know if these would be suitable.
Whilst it’s always better to keep to the same solvent base where possible (in this case by using the Acrylic Sanding Sealer) not everyone realises that you can put Acrylic Lacquer over Cellulose Sanding Sealer, they are designed to be compatible so our caller was in luck here. It’s also ok to put Friction Polish on top of the Acrylic Lacquer (or any of the other lacquers) and it will give a deeper, brighter shine, especially when used with the Burnishing Cream. However, the Friction Polish isn’t what we’d consider to be a hardwearing coating and it will wear off in a relatively short period of time, exposing the Acrylic Lacquer beneath – which is more that ample as a finish for this project.

Another caller has a coffee table that is showing signs of wear and wanted to use Spirit Stain to tint Acrylic Lacquer and use this to revitalise the finish. Spirit Stain is quite adaptable and can be used to tint not only Acrylic Lacquer but also Cellulose Sanding Sealer, Melamine Lacquer and, with a bit of work, Liming Wax and WoodWax 22! So whilst the best solution to this would be to strip the table back to bare wood and start again a coat of lacquer over top (provided it was suitable prepared) is a good halfway house.

Lots of people use our products on jewellery and we had an enquiry this week about staining and finishing pieces; the caller was using Food Safe Finish to reduce the chance of a reaction by the wearer, but not unexpectedly the stain was coming off instead. Spirit Stain needs to be sealed into the wood, whatever the item being made is. Options include the oils or waxes but in this case we suggested Acrylic Gloss Lacquer. It’s very tough and will stand up to most things, bright enough to make the colours of the stain really pop and being toy safe it shouldn’t cause any discomfort to the wearer. And of course it’s easy to apply and won’t lift the stain.

Still with stains, we were asked about using meths to dilute the stain to produce a wash effect. This can be done but if using lighter colours (yellow and orange particularly) the purple dye in the meths is likely to affect the colour. A better choice would be Spirit Thinners which is the perfect thinner for Spirit Stains.

And finally, someone enquired about disposable gloves. He was using cheap latex ones which aren’t known for their solvent resistance. We prefer (and even sell) Vinyl Gloves. They still don’t last forever but they’re easier to re-use and won’t fall apart when using any of our products.

That’s it for this week, I hope you found some little nuggets in there somewhere!

Have a good weekend,