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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is a follow up thread to the one I had recently titled Solvent Based Stain.

The XST-1800 Series Wiping Stain that I had custom mixed is presenting a challenge. I applied one coat on a test piece and it was not nearly dark enough. So this morning I put on the second coat although the limited instructions do not say anything about how to apply a second coat. Since the clean-up solvent is listed as lacquer thinner when I put the second coat on it essentially dissolved the first coat as lacquer would do based on my limited understanding. So it was difficult to get the darkness that I needed.

I went to where I bought this stain and the person working today (not the same guy who mixed it for me) really did not know how to help me. She suggested that I put on a liberal single coat and then wipe back after it “flashes”.

Any reading I have done about lacquer stain scares me because it implies that spraying is the way to go and I do not have that capability. The name of the product tells me that I can wipe this on but so far not successfully.

I would like feedback on whether to apply one thick coat of 2 normal coats. Do I sand between coats? Do I sand before top coating?

The saga never seems to end.

Thanks again.

Gary
 

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Since your product is formulated for wiping, then wiping or brushing is ok to do. Minwax makes a brushing lacquer as well. Can you spray it? Sure, but its a waste of time since its formulated to cure at a slower rate, that is why you can brush it. Spray lacquers flash off faster.

As for the advice given, to wipe off excess after it flashes off.... ?

When the solvents flash off, in the case of nitro based lacquers, acetone, toluene, xylene being the solvent, the finish is still drying and probably soft to the touch. You can experiment on your own, but rubbing across the surface at this point would probably "drag" the film. Something I would not want to do. If you were to soak a rag in the appropriate solvent and then wipe back, you would probably pull up some color, but you would have to work fairly quickly and consistently to get even coloration.

As for building layers, that is your best bet for an even color. Lacquer will burn in to previous layers, but it doesn't necessarily redissolve all the way through. You should see a darkening, you may have to do more layers. Test it out and let us know.
HTH :smile:
 

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I think the way you are set up I think I would shelve the lacquer stain. You might be able to use it on oak if you wiped it real fast. It would give you a lot more problems with blotch on birch and maple working it by hand. It's so strong I think it would ignore wood conditioners. I bought it for a while made by a different company and I had to overthin it and put multiple coats spraying it before I could achieve the color I wanted. That was before I found out about dyes and it made it handy because I could stain the furniture immediately start shooting lacquer sealer on it. As soon as I found out about dyes I quit using lacquer stain. All it really is is lacquer paint thinned down. You could make your own with about a 4 to 1 ratio thinner to lacquer sanding sealer and mix a universal tinting color in it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Since your product is formulated for wiping, then wiping or brushing is ok to do. Minwax makes a brushing lacquer as well. Can you spray it? Sure, but its a waste of time since its formulated to cure at a slower rate, that is why you can brush it. Spray lacquers flash off faster.

As for the advice given, to wipe off excess after it flashes off.... ?

When the solvents flash off, in the case of nitro based lacquers, acetone, toluene, xylene being the solvent, the finish is still drying and probably soft to the touch. You can experiment on your own, but rubbing across the surface at this point would probably "drag" the film. Something I would not want to do. If you were to soak a rag in the appropriate solvent and then wipe back, you would probably pull up some color, but you would have to work fairly quickly and consistently to get even coloration.

As for building layers, that is your best bet for an even color. Lacquer will burn in to previous layers, but it doesn't necessarily redissolve all the way through. You should see a darkening, you may have to do more layers. Test it out and let us know.
HTH :smile:
I will carefully try applying 2 or 3 thin layers so that I can achieve the colour depth that I want. Thank you for the feedback.

Gary
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I think the way you are set up I think I would shelve the lacquer stain. You might be able to use it on oak if you wiped it real fast. It would give you a lot more problems with blotch on birch and maple working it by hand. It's so strong I think it would ignore wood conditioners. I bought it for a while made by a different company and I had to overthin it and put multiple coats spraying it before I could achieve the color I wanted. That was before I found out about dyes and it made it handy because I could stain the furniture immediately start shooting lacquer sealer on it. As soon as I found out about dyes I quit using lacquer stain. All it really is is lacquer paint thinned down. You could make your own with about a 4 to 1 ratio thinner to lacquer sanding sealer and mix a universal tinting color in it.
Steve I had done many, many color tests using combinations of brown colored dye and red colored stains. They were all bad. The custom mixed lacquer based stain finally got the color correct.

The frustrating thing is that I brought a test piece in to the store that mixed the custom color. The guy who did the mixing duplicated the color and opaqueness and sheen that I wanted. I went back on Friday and the person running the store (a small one person store) was completely unhelpful and had no idea how to answer my questions. And the guy who did the mixing is not back till Monday.

Just yesterday I got some red colored dyes shipped to me so at least I now have more options on trying to mix up something custom if I cannot make this lacquer based stain work.

Gary
 

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>>>> XST-1800 Series Wiping Stain

I have never heard of this. I googled it and found no info. Do you have any details? What about it caused you to choose it for your project?

Most lacquer based stains are intended for spraying. Wiping or brushing would be very difficult.
 

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Howard, that is simply not true ;-) I only use Lacquer based products by Chemcraft and they too also have a wiping stain that I use quite frequently. Anyhow, OP if you want to achieve a darker color you can also spray it until you get the color you want. I have done this for years and is very common in the cabinet industry. Chemcraft actually offers a wiping stain and a spray stain. Great products if they are accessible to you. But, you can do the same with whatever product you have too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Since your product is formulated for wiping, then wiping or brushing is ok to do. Minwax makes a brushing lacquer as well. Can you spray it? Sure, but its a waste of time since its formulated to cure at a slower rate, that is why you can brush it. Spray lacquers flash off faster.

As for the advice given, to wipe off excess after it flashes off.... ?

When the solvents flash off, in the case of nitro based lacquers, acetone, toluene, xylene being the solvent, the finish is still drying and probably soft to the touch. You can experiment on your own, but rubbing across the surface at this point would probably "drag" the film. Something I would not want to do. If you were to soak a rag in the appropriate solvent and then wipe back, you would probably pull up some color, but you would have to work fairly quickly and consistently to get even coloration.

As for building layers, that is your best bet for an even color. Lacquer will burn in to previous layers, but it doesn't necessarily redissolve all the way through. You should see a darkening, you may have to do more layers. Test it out and let us know.
HTH :smile:
I have now tried a test piece with 3 coats of the lacquer based stain. The good news is that I was able to achieve the desired depth of color. The bad news is that the 2nd and 3rd coats are difficult to apply since, being lacquer based, the previous coat partially melds and this caused some unevenness of color. Not yet sure how I am going to solve this.

Gary
 

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GAF said:
I have now tried a test piece with 3 coats of the lacquer based stain. The good news is that I was able to achieve the desired depth of color. The bad news is that the 2nd and 3rd coats are difficult to apply since, being lacquer based, the previous coat partially melds and this caused some unevenness of color. Not yet sure how I am going to solve this.

Gary
This is why you need to overspray additional coats to achieve the color you want. This is standard practice in the cabinet industry. Wiping more than one coat doesn't work well as you figured out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
>>>> XST-1800 Series Wiping Stain

I have never heard of this. I googled it and found no info. Do you have any details? What about it caused you to choose it for your project?

Most lacquer based stains are intended for spraying. Wiping or brushing would be very difficult.
Howie the information on the web about this product is shockingly sparse. The company that makes it is AkzoNobel which is not a household name but appears to be a huge chemicals company. However information about this wiping stain is almost non-existent. The specs sheet I had to go back and ask for also provides little help. I live in a small city and this was the only place in town that could or would mix anything custom for stains. And they do it only for commercial customer but they seemed to ignore that rule when I was there.

Very frustrating experience.

Gary
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
This is why you need to overspray additional coats to achieve the color you want. This is standard practice in the cabinet industry. Wiping more than one coat doesn't work well as you figured out.
Cal then I am dead in the water and have to find another solution. I have no spray capability. These learning experiences are taking their toll.

Gary
 

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GAF, maybe if you leave a little more time between coats, the previous layers will have less solvent in them and have more thoroughly cured. Perhaps then you can swipe on quickly and without moving back over an additional coat. In truth the advice I gave you does work better when sprayed, but you have to work with what you have. HTH :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
GAF, maybe if you leave a little more time between coats, the previous layers will have less solvent in them and have more thoroughly cured. Perhaps then you can swipe on quickly and without moving back over an additional coat. In truth the advice I gave you does work better when sprayed, but you have to work with what you have. HTH :)
I became so frustrated with my limited experience with this lacquer based stain that I decided I would give dye another shot. Steve Neul had given me some ideas in another post about how to combine various dye colors. I had nothing to lose by trying it. I think the results are fine color wise and I can get the intensity that I want by adding additional coats very simply with dye.

The picture below shows the test in the middle (not top coated). This is a go in my opinion. Whew!

Gary
 

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Another thing you might try with your lacquer wiping stain is to use more or darker pigments in the stain to make it darker. The brew you have probably just isn't dark enough. Without spraying it, it wouldn't work to do multiple coats.

I think I could achieve that color using black, red oxide and yellow oxide tinting color and water.
 

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I am very familier with wiping stains. I owned a large custom and semi-custom cabinet/furniture shop. We had a dedicated finish and two full time finishers. What I was not clear about is that I could not recognize the product that the OP cited in his posting. That was the basis of the query for more info.

Let me say that wiping lacquer stains--as some others have noted--are not that easy to use. They dry too fast making even coloring difficult to create. Lacquer stains, whether purchased or made in the shop, are most controllable if sprayed. Most commercial furniture and cabinetry shops use lacquer based stains. They do not wipe them on. They are sprayed. That's not to say that they can not be wiped but I would not recommend it.
 

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Cal then I am dead in the water and have to find another solution. I have no spray capability. These learning experiences are taking their toll.

Gary
Hahaha.... don't I understand that!! When I first started using Lacquer stains it was a whole new experience and I almost messed up a twenty thousand dollar kitchen in the mist of it. :no::no: A cheap cup gun and a compressor you'll be amazed on what you can do with Lacquer stains and finish in a very short amount of time. I love Lacquer based products and if you are making a living Woodworking like myself time is crucial. A base coat of dye stain could help achieve the color you want or even adding some Transtint dyes to your stain. Good luck!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Another thing you might try with your lacquer wiping stain is to use more or darker pigments in the stain to make it darker. The brew you have probably just isn't dark enough. Without spraying it, it wouldn't work to do multiple coats.

I think I could achieve that color using black, red oxide and yellow oxide tinting color and water.
Thanks Steve but I am going to go the dye route all the way.

Small question - when I am applying the dye can I put on multiple coats back to back till I achieve the desired darkness? Or do I have to let the dye dry between coats? If so how long should I wait?

Thanks.

Gary
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Hahaha.... don't I understand that!! When I first started using Lacquer stains it was a whole new experience and I almost messed up a twenty thousand dollar kitchen in the mist of it. :no::no: A cheap cup gun and a compressor you'll be amazed on what you can do with Lacquer stains and finish in a very short amount of time. I love Lacquer based products and if you are making a living Woodworking like myself time is crucial. A base coat of dye stain could help achieve the color you want or even adding some Transtint dyes to your stain. Good luck!!
Thanks Cal - I will use dye all the way at this point.

Gary
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I am very familier with wiping stains. I owned a large custom and semi-custom cabinet/furniture shop. We had a dedicated finish and two full time finishers. What I was not clear about is that I could not recognize the product that the OP cited in his posting. That was the basis of the query for more info.

Let me say that wiping lacquer stains--as some others have noted--are not that easy to use. They dry too fast making even coloring difficult to create. Lacquer stains, whether purchased or made in the shop, are most controllable if sprayed. Most commercial furniture and cabinetry shops use lacquer based stains. They do not wipe them on. They are sprayed. That's not to say that they can not be wiped but I would not recommend it.
Thanks Howie. The learning curve is much steeper than I ever anticipated. I have only been at this refinishing for 18 months as a retirement hobby. Maybe I am in way over my head.

Gary
 

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I have only been at this refinishing for 18 months as a retirement hobby. Maybe I am in way over my head.

Gary
Nah, you're not in over your head.
This is just another problem you won't have in the future :thumbsup:
 
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