I just applied a classic wood oil stain to my front wooden door. ie with brush hash marks. I am about half done with finishing windows sashes for casement windows on my entire house. The varnish protects the epoxy from UV damage and the epoxy gives the varnish a nice and stable One is that simply coating a failing finish could mean bad things down the line. HI WW….doing over a friends solarium which is 6 inch redwood boards and glass panels…the old clear spar varnish was applied over bare redwood, and now it has potato chipped and become opaque…whats the best removal of these flakes? If you read through the comments above, you’ll see that other folks have had issues with Helmsman. Thanks. But if I remember correctly they recommend applying with a brush at certain dilutions. Varnish, Polys, Shellac, Water Based Stains, Gel Stains…….I could go on but you did the video. Again, he saw really obvious brush strokes. bio Festool sells these under the Platin line of abrasives. 6 coats. It is absolutely stunning. stock. We just got a White Mountain ice cream maker and I am considering finishing the wood bucket to keep it nice looking. Thank you for everything! And what may be best for wood may not be best for the ice cream making process. I’m using Old Masters waterbased exterior spar urethane and I’ll brush on a run and when I re-dip the brush and go to poly back into existing run, that run is drying already and raises up BAD!! stain - left to dry for 2 weeks - 2 coats ESP 155 epoxy sealer and Then proceed with your desired number of topcoats on the front. Honestly, I really have no idea what the long term effects of the finish would be on the paper products. Thanks! So a good marine varnish is still a great idea. We’re a little over a year now, and we have what appear to be about 30 or so very tiny speckles showing up on the top half of the door closest to where our coach lights are. surface to bond to. How saturated is your cloth? I have a redwood picnic table that sits in the hot West Texas sun year-round. Oil just takes so long to dry, the results of coloring with that could very well be unpredictable. You might need to seal it with some very light coats of lacquer or maybe test for color fastness using an oil-based product. Contrary to all the toning and glazings I have heard about. Is it too late to try the wipe on method you discribe with the Epifanes and do I need to sand between the layers? Catalog. In your situation, it sounds like you definitely want things to be rough anyway, so I wouldn’t worry much about sanding. Thanks a lot, Temperatures in the 0-20 F range. marc keep up the good work Will it change the color? Sure you can. You really shouldn’t have a problem using their water-based stain under the Epifanes. wood and under the varnish. picnic tables for wedding–we’ve been lucky to have 8 tables custom built, each 8 feet long and 32 inches wide, for daughter’s wedding–milled out of 60 year old pine trees, cut down on a friend’s property. They are all compatible finishes. We, husband and myself, make rustic furniture. I followed intstructions and don’t understand what happended. I get it that I should use a cloth to apply the stain but I’m unsure how to apply the spar urethane. If it were me, I’d lightly sand and finish with another brushed coat or a couple of wiped on coats of Helmsman on your door. Hey there. If you let it cure for three to four days, I would definitely give the surface a little sanding to give the urethane a mechanical tooth. I have a large front porch so the door is not in direct sunlight for very long each day so I just put on three coats. They’re all a compromise in some way. I can’t spend much more time then this for this job. My guess is, if you use a chemical stripper like we do on furniture, you’re going to end up with an eyesore. So I think you should make sure the paint is locked down before you consider the spar urethane. !st two u can control air atomization, by feel. I was planning on chemically stripping it to get back to bare wood but I’m concerned I won’t be able to get all the Varathane out of the knots and crevasses. I spent so much time concentrating on stripping and prepping the door that when it came to finishing I left out a major part by not curing the stain enough and or putting it on too heavy. I was thinking of buffing after the final coat with 600 grit paper. I need to finish new deck furnitur made with pressure treated pine. Catalog/Section A tough coating at a great price For decks in good condition, bring out the beauty in wood with True Basics semi-transparent stains, available in 22 colors. On certain surfaces (usually darker ones), nearly all water-based finishes will appear somewhat lifeless. I have a couple of gaps between the 1X4’s. / Unfortunately the satin finish looked too shiny compared to the same satin finish when applied on real wood doors. Dont shake the can. If you can get down to bare wood, even better. I attempted to use a water-based spar urethane but instead of drying clear it dried leaving cloudy spots and milky streaks here and there. My guess is that the epoxy isn’t going to be too picky about what it sticks to. D.R. If you need to do something other than HVLP, try a brush. Thank you Woodwhisperer and Johnny Mack for your comments. Varathane only needs about 5-10 percent mineral spirits added to wipe. The finish is perfect–it gives the old look that is dark but still shows the grain through evenly. It tends to be softer and more flexible, as it needs to be to survive outdoors. And thanks for this web site, it’s terrific …. I-Misc. Then follow up with a few coats of a water based product. If sandpaper gums up, allow more dry time. Also, when whipping on, the product gets milky. Even under tent the wood surface is very damp. The only turnoff is when you say it is a softer finish, how softt are we talking. The only thing I can guess is that 180 allows more stain and/or finish to soak in than after a 220 sanding. I contacted Epifanes and had a very good 30 minute discussion about the project with them. I was going to apply Minwax Spray Gloss Spar Urethane as the final coat. As this 450 satin dries fairly quickly, I could apply maybe 3 coats over one day. While a 220 grit ROS sanding will get you there quickly, it could very well get to there too fast! / Phone order? But from what you describe, it sounds like trapped moisture. if we sand the finish down to get rid of the bubbles, can we apply the Behlens rock hard table top varnish over the remaining urethane or would it be best to try your 50/50 mix. Once the surface is nice and smooth, your subsequent coats usually dry relatively smooth. The flatteners tend to sink to the bottom so if you don’t mix it, you’ll essentially have gloss on the top and a bunch of crap on the bottom. Hello, just finished a deck with Brazilian tiger wood. Sometimes I thin the material a bit with Naptha instead of mineral spirits as that helps it tack up a little faster. HI Nicole. How can I clean this mess up??? Gives a nice smooth finish. Note: If desired, Spar Marine may be used over Feast Watson Wood shield Oil 7-10 days after staining. So if the surface isn’t tacky at all then the softer finish might just be due to the nature of the product. The table frame is steel. My first try was an oil based polyurethane, it seemed was too glossy for the look I was wanting (and I fly landed in my tacky finish, so I had to start again). The areas where I sanded have a darker appearance than the unsanded areas, even though it is the same varnish being used and it occurs not only on the exposed wood but the areas that I sanded the finish off of (that had not been damaged), just in order to be able to feather the new finish in easier. I dont have friends that have this skill.As far as classes, I have looked but can not find any near Cincinnati,Ohio. I’m currently building a set of folding stools and am wondering about the best finish to put on them so that they can be safely used outside. Glad to help. That’s when it quit soaking in, plus one coat. Second, how can I prevent the milky appearance of the dried water-based product? I applied 2 coats poly and have applied a renewal poly coat about every 3 years, sometimes needing to touch up the stain a bit. So are there drawbacks to using spar versus a standard interior poly and that is why many just go with the poly for a project like this? I personally don’t think “Epihanes” is any better than Spar Varathane (made by Rustoleum). Uncovered the door about a month ago and still looked great, the sun came out and bubbles everywhere. I forgot to mention that the spar urethane was oil-based from Rustoleom and the stain underneath was Minwax Wood Finish. I used Zar oil based stain and it looks really nice. I thought it was dry so went over it with steelwool and now noticed in some of the groves it is a bit ticky. Usually with furniture, you can sand your finish coat flat after you apply a coat or two of the finish. What do you mean by “uneven”. Although Epifanes is a better overall product, it won’t really solve your problem. What you’ll notice with many of the posts and replies here is that its not necessarily because the application technique that people are having problems. Marc – thank you so much for the helpful advice. I look forward to your response. spar urethane or simply spar varnish, or simply varnish that is not the traditional varnish product. So instead of a “do-over”, I would try a fresh topcoat of something like General Finishes Arm-R-Seal. Honestly, I would go with a good high quality polyurethane. But whenever putting new finish on top of old finish, there’s potential for things to go wrong. I will use the rag method because I’ve had good results in the past. The sculpture is outside and got rained on. I’ve learned a lot from you podcasts and enjoyed them all. But usually, two coats isn’t enough to build a high shine. Whisperer — I’m in the process of refinishing some badly weathered canoe gunwales (the wood trim around the outer edges of a canoe), and am thrilled to find this thread where I’ve learned about Epifanes. Other states are considering it. There are solvent based 1 part polyurethanes and 2 part polyurethanes (called Next weekend, I’m applying the Spar Varnish. The garage does have heat, but it is a huge space so heating it to 70 degrees is not very practical so temperature in the garage while I’m away is likely to be in the 50-55 degree range. But in terms of sanding and surface prep, its pretty much the same. I would be curious to see how this holds up compared to your other finishes. That way it keeps things nice and flat and you won’t have any divots when you’re done. Could this mess with it? but the unsure if oil or water bases product was used before, are there any adhesion concerns to watch for or a test to know which to use? I have been brushing on a couple coats, then wet sanding lightly, and spraying the final coat or two. Never mix water based with oil base. Which leads me to ask whether I should be using mineral spirits to dilute the spar urethane for use on an oak baseboard in a bathroom and if yes how much mineral spirits to spar urethane do you suggest? If you want to hide the streaks by making the surface more “matte” you can certainly use sandpaper to do that. I was told to apply spar varnish to my stained fiberglass front door. This will give you a bit more working time between application strokes. So, what would you recommend conditioning the doors with prior to staining? I would consult the manufacturer’s recommended application temps. I plan on trying to stay there as much as possible during this process, but there will be times when I won’t be there for a few days in a row, thus, I will want to unplug the heater for my brush booth while away. Sand lightly between coats with fine sandpaper (220 grit) to produce a finer finish and promote adhesion. I brush as well as spray. I’ve been meaning to try that finish but haven’t had a chance. You can thin it using anything like mineral spirits, naptha, or paint thinner. Thanks for the wealth of information you have provided on this site. Then start wiping on your coats. Would love your opinion! might be the epoxy covered hull of a newly built boat, or an epoxy resin coated piece of wood trim from the cockpit So I would say stick with a sanding block. Maybe rough up the surface a little with some 320 grit sandpaper before applying the varnish. We’ve finished them in a dark walnut that was thinned 2 to 1 with mineral spirits. I personally don’t think its any better than Varathane Spar. The company that installed the door suggested to me that it not be removed. One thing I know though is that once you sand off a finish and refinish it, the wood almost never stains or finishes to the exact same color. You mentioned previously that they used water-based finish on the inside, so yes, that’s a completely different animal. Would this help? About 10 years ago, I refinished our existing front door and applied gloss Helmsman spar urethane – the door is on the south and has had exposure to direct sun in the summer time. We hired professional stainers to stain & poly all the extensive woodwork in our newly constructed house, They’ve done a great job using Old Masters gel stain followed by Sikkens spray-on water-based satin polyurethane, which they sand after 2 coats and it leaves a beautiful finish. It looks wonderful while it’s wet, but when it dries it has slight cloudy look to it? Hey Heather. Thanks for your help. We were admiring the beautiful finish on a sample door at Lowe’s and the salesman said it was so nice because they had used Sherwin-Williams sanding sealer after the stain and then used spar urethane. but assumed to be linseed oil. thanks. Its tough to stir it back in by hand. Testing a small area the varnish turened reeally opaque and undesirable, much more than other waterbased( varathane spar urethane) that I had used in the past. Marc, I sanded the edges of the holes and recoated but of course they showed. I am doing a kitchen table, is it okay to use Helmsman spar urethane on the top? But if you’re really looking to do something significant with color, you are better off doing this in the stain layer. raw wood finish). I’d step back and try to decide if the color difference is really work opening a new can of worms or if you can live with it. I’ve already opened the Zar and don’t want to be wasteful. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely our own. I’m using the oil based Helmsman to make an outdoor table and chairs. The swelling and shrinking of your wood caused by the change in humidity alone will be enough to break down your regular varnish within a short time. We are currently in the process of finishing our new Pella windows. Great site you have here! I have a general question. I’m just about through all of them but am trying to pace myself a bit since I’ve been watching about 5 or 6 episodes per day since I discovered it. Do you think Epifanes is still the best for this situation? Now we might use mineral spirits (paint thinner) instead of turpentine, but this was an ancient formula, surely before there was mineral spirits. I always vacuum my pieces after I sand with a soft brush on the wand ; this picks up 90+% of the dust. Either way, my solution for this would be to make sure the door is well sanded. John. General Finishes is my favorite in that arena. Michael Dresdner: Yes, of course, but if it is an exterior application, choose a 100% pigment based stain, since dyes will fade in sunlight. Otherwise, you are probably better off getting the oil-based stuff. Thanks for any advice on this!!!! There are water based coating that may be called water based varnish or water based polyurethanes. Can you shed some light on any of this – the speckles, the smear? med coat like a sealer coat. The uneven spots might just go away as you apply more coats. professional and marketing reasons. It is also known as "marine varnish." We sprayed down the sparkle, and added a layer of MinWax Helmenns Spar Urethane in clear gloss. I ideally wanted to keep the finish light and natural looking. Some people prefer to toss a brush after each use, but when you buy a quality brush it can last for weeks of use with proper care. How can I get these out at this point? Solved my bubble, speck and brush stroke problems on my dashboard. Second, if you think the sticky/ tacky thing won’t be an issue, when should I apply the varnish? Will be waiting for a answer.Thank you for all the information. After rain looking like new again. Do you have a 800 number I can talk to someone? Can I do this and expect good results or would you advise against? As for the number of coats, that’s a personal call. Its a very natural looking finish without a thick film and it seems to be holding up quite well. Pretty much all oil-based products will. Lots of coatings etc. the solvent so the cure time of a varnish is based upon the drying agent and the solvent type and amount. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. thanks… will give it a go and see what happens. 3) Use Keeping the brush wet so that you always maintain a wet edge is key. Second, is it possible to switch finishes in the middle of a project, or would I have to remove the Helmsman? It looks bad. There’s also a little cloudiness. Hi, l’ve just made a welcome sign in acrylic paint on a oak wood, l would like to know what is the best finish for protection since it’s will be outside. Is there a method to do this with GF 450? system of multiple coats of varnish (some folks will apply 8-12 coats of varnish rather than a simple 2 or 3). It seems like it had dried but the wet stain appears to be keeping the spar urethane a little oily. If you apply it while it’s cold out, the finish will definitely take much longer to dry. If I were doing cabinet doors or doors I might consider wiping. Classic case of not reading the directions… now what? * I used Varathane outdoor spar urethane. Its still pretty darn durable stuff so I think you’ll just create more issues for yourself by trying to put something over it. finish. 63 degrees in garage – 50% humidity. What patients! So if the instructions say you need to swell the wood, I wouldn’t recommend applying a finish to the interior. Thanks so much for your advice! We are the only technology based coating/epoxy/resin So it’s more about the finish curing properly between applications rather than the sanding. Or please recommend a different product because I’m NOT getting rid of the cats! Then I coat the table with two coats of Helmsman Spar varnish. Almost like the poly seeps between the cracks and lowers versus the center of the wood which gives a less than flat look. If not, you may need to sand the surface down until all the brush marks are gone and the surface is perfectly smooth. It also sands The color matches so well with the original color and the result form the first coat was satisfying. Why they are white is definitely perplexing. Ive recently finished installing a vaulted tongue-and-groove ceiling, so I’m ready to put something on it. Thanks. Mahalo, Hi Marc, thanks for all the great info! The softer formula makes it able to expand and contract with the wood better, which helps prevent the finish from cracking. I’m wondering if I should remove the poly in some areas. So I stick with what I feel works best, and that’s Epifanes. I have also never used the man o war product before. This one uses alkyd resin. No real reason to use a spar urethane. That said, I do think a gel stain is a great idea. Now you may very well want to go with more than that for even more protection, but in my opinion, too much varnish just looks like crap. But just know that that the answer to your question is no, you generally don’t want to put touch up color on top of poly. So it’s definitely possible. Question is, do I need to sand between coats if it already has a rough feel to the finish? To those of you who are thinking about paintnig your countertops, it is WELL worth the time. If you do have to brush it on, I recommend using a synthetic applicator taking care not to produce bubbles. I’ve been applying spar urethane to a bar top for my basement (Miniwax Helmsman gloss). You didn’t mention the brand of varnish or how long you waited before applying the varnish over the stained surface. More protection but gives you the truth, I have made several floor cloths for answer.Thank... It holds up compared to your clear poly top coats will bind more securely whole project days after staining hours! Stay indoors with some mineral spirits will this work, apply with a tarp when in. 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