3rd Coat = Sticky Shellac

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by jtrom, Dec 12, 2015.

  1. jtrom


    Nov 22, 2008
    Kelowna BC
    Hey TBers,

    I have been playing with some de-waxed shellac (1.5 lb cut) on a couple projects of mine (basses and general woodworking). I have been having some issues with the shellac, especially when i'm doing a 3rd coat.

    I used a brush for the 1st coat and a brush for the 2nd. I sanded in-between with 320, lightly, and let it sit until it was more than dry enough to put a 3rd coat on.

    I am wanting to use a pad for the 3rd coat so that I minimize the potential for brush strokes and little imperfections in the finish and what I'm finding is that it is very difficult to apply the 3rd coat with a pad. It is SOOO sticky and very frustrating... does anyone have a similar experience?

    This has happened on 3 different occasions... so something in my process must be off.

    Any suggestions appreciated!
  2. Beej


    Feb 10, 2007
    Vancouver Island
    How thin is your shellac? I can't picture it sticky... got any pics?
  3. Smilodon


    Feb 18, 2012
    What do you mean by "pad" if it consist of a synthetic sponge it may dissolve in the solvents used in shellac.

    Other than that; work faster. The stickyness is probably from the previous layer dissolving, making it sticky. Quick application, and never go over the same area twice in the same coat.
  4. jtrom


    Nov 22, 2008
    Kelowna BC
    I think that the layer isn't thick enough... I crumple up a piece of t-shirt into a 3" / 3" square of shirt and dip it into the shellac (1.5lb cut). I'm pretty sure that it just want' going on thick enough and it was dissolving the previous layer and tacking it up
  5. jtrom


    Nov 22, 2008
    Kelowna BC
    I think you're right in that it just wasn't going on thick enough. I used a brush instead and it wen ton fine.
  6. jtrom


    Nov 22, 2008
    Kelowna BC
    I am wanting to sand out any imperfections that the brush might leave behind. So when I sand it down it turns into a matt/satin finish. Is there any way to buff that satin into a gloss using some kind of buffing agent?
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