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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Like the title says. I'm looking to see what polyurethane you use. I have been using the minwax fast drying clear gloss. I like it but it was the first one I grabbed when I first started the woodworking / CNC stuff. Wondering if there is something better for a similar price. This usually takes me 3 coats with light sanding in between to get the shine I want.
 

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Minwax, Varathane, or Benjamin Moore. I'm trying to avoid fast drying paints and finishes these days. Way back when all paints took from 16 to 24 hours to dry the finishes turned out better and that's because the finish had time for the surface tension in it to pull the surface level before it skinned over. I used some white enamel from Benjamin Moore that had a 16 hour drying time to paint a night stand I made for my wife and the finish turned out beautifully despite a less than stellar spray job on my part. I got it a little runny in a few spots and the paint leveled the runs out before it dried.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Minwax, Varathane, or Benjamin Moore. I'm trying to avoid fast drying paints and finishes these days. Way back when all paints took from 16 to 24 hours to dry the finishes turned out better and that's because the finish had time for the surface tension in it to pull the surface level before it skinned over. I used some white enamel from Benjamin Moore that had a 16 hour drying time to paint a night stand I made for my wife and the finish turned out beautifully despite a less than stellar spray job on my part. I got it a little runny in a few spots and the paint leveled the runs out before it dried.
Charles
Thanks for the info
 

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Theo
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I'm trying to avoid fast drying paints and finishes these days.
Yep, me too. I normally even allow any glueups with Titebond II to set overnight, even tho I know I could work with them in an hour or so. So letting a finish dry overnight is definitely no problem with me. Always have something else to work on in the meantime, so no biggie at all. It's not that the finishes dry fast so much as I feel the fast dry finishes have less quality.
 

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I like Varathane oil based clear gloss poly. But, it's a fast dry and has an amber cast. (Not a biggie for my stuff) For a crystal clear finish, Varathane's water based is very good.
 
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I use Minwax Oil Modified Polyurethane and spray it on with a HVLP spray gun. I re-finished our kitchen table and it was like a layer of glass... I couldn't believe I did it. The following review is not mine but is written well.

"SPRAY IT"
Review Rating 5 Stars Reviewed on 04/04/2018
Recommended
I have been a furniture maker for 40 years. I have used many products and after seeing another pro use this in a LVHP ( compressor ) spray gun. I was convinced. I use a very inexpensive 30.00 sprayer with a 2.0 tip. The first coats need to be very dry ... also fogged on . 2-3 coats dry and then sand with 320 lightly ..... then and only then can you begin to build coats. You can sand in 30 minutes if you are in the 70+ degree range. It does not load the paper and sands perfectly. No lacquer thinner to buy for clean up. I rinsed everything out ( water ) and then fill the gun cup with water put clamp on the trigger and walk away. I still cannot believe this product is this good ... but it is. I do not know the hardness figures to compare to solvent material .
 

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Frank
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Chad,

I use General Finish Arm-R-Seal Satin. I purchase it from Rockler. Last year I started putting on two coats of Gloss and the final coat of Satin. A woodworker at Rockler gave me this advise. If you look at the Gloss in the can, it is almost clear. The Satin is more cloudy because of the additive that produces satin finish. By putting on two coats of clear, more of the wood grain shows through. Also, most of my projects are made using Walnut.

Frank
 

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I have used Zar oil-base poly for 20 or more years. I mix about 50/50 with paint cleanup mineral spirits (stronger than regular mineral spirits), and apply with 1/4 of a blue paper shop towel folded into 1/4s. I like the results and get no runs. It take more coats since they are light coats, but I'm retired and have no place to go so I can wait to apply more coats. Malcolm / Kentucky USA
 

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Theo
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"SPRAY IT"
Review Rating 5 Stars Reviewed on 04/04/2018
Recommended.
Did I miss something? What is this guy spraying that takes water cleanup?

I've been thinking of trying a new finish for my canes. Right now they are getting several coats of thinned Titebond II. Dries in minutes, and can put several coats on in not long a time frame. Not sure how old my test cane is, but the finish is holding up pretty darn well. Especially considering that when I go somewhere it is in the bed of my pickup, rain, shine, snow, sleet, whatever. It doesn't get wiped off either. Like I said, test cane. If I do try something new, I'm going to go with water based.
 
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I have been using a water-based Poly from Cabot's - it's designed for floors, but under the advice I was given by the vendor I used it on my dining table when I built it, and they were right. Harder wearing without compromise on the coverage and didn't spoil the look.
https://www.inspirationspaint.com.au/products/details/cfp-floor-water-based

I wasn't going for a high gloss though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks for all the replies!! :smile: I definitely have more ideas and now more options to look into.
 

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A 2nd for General Finishes, although I am partial to their Seal-A-Cell product, which is a combined tung oil/poly mix applied by rag. This penetrate and protects with no sheen, it’s all just the oiled wood look.

This is also ideal as a pre-seal for difficult to stain woods.
 

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I have been using a water-based Poly from Cabot's - it's designed for floors, but under the advice I was given by the vendor I used it on my dining table when I built it, and they were right. Harder wearing without compromise on the coverage and didn't spoil the look.

I wasn't going for a high gloss though.
What was the advice? I used it for floors, too, and have some in the storage but did not risk it using it for the furniture
 

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Steve
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What was the advice? I used it for floors, too, and have some in the storage but did not risk it using it for the furniture
Hi Thomas

The advice was about how well it would wear, being resistant to most things, but also that it wouldn't spoil the look of the wood through the finish.
I wasn't after a gloss, so for a semi-gloss/matt finish it was perfect for what I needed as the wood is still the hero.

It's been used as a table should, including having my wife's interior design models made on it, and hasn't scuffed the surface in any way appreciable.

So for something that would withstand good use, the suggestion to use that over some other products was invaluable. I've since used it on other projects too with great success.

Bear in mind it's not deigned "food safe", so I wouldn't use it on a cutting board for example.
 
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