Behlen instrument lacquer over Miniwax water based stain

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by hopsbb, Apr 19, 2017.

  1. hopsbb


    Nov 8, 2014
    I'm working on a body for a friend. He found an orange color that he liked so he bought a Qt. Its a Miniwax tinted water based stain. It's going on an Ash body and I'm just wondering if there will be any problems using the miniwax water based stuff and the shooting the Behlen lacquer over it. This will be my first time ever using lacquer for a project.
  2. put links up for both products. I've successfully used 2 part auto poly over water based poly with no adhesion issues. allowing the water based stuff to cure completely and finish shrinking took several weeks to a month depending on temps.

    edit: i'm guessing you're taking about the behlens nitro?
  3. Beej


    Feb 10, 2007
    Vancouver Island
    I'd suggest taking a chunk of ash and doing a test piece - only way to be sure and prevent a do-over... :)
  4. It would be good to grainfill the ash with a black/brown filler before you stain, unless he wants to feel the grain.

    I bought a kit bass through neck, ash wings and tried first to use a water based stain without grainfilling first. It was underwhelming. I then did a (black) grainfill on that (waterbased as well) and sanded down, then re-stained.
  5. Hmmm... that'll be interesting. I don't see why it won't work as long as you let it dry completely then scuff prior to shooting the nitro. You'll definitely want to test it as scuffing will lighten up the stain some.
  6. you may also consider topping that stain with poly then the nitro after the poly cures.
  7. Dadagoboi

    Dadagoboi CATALDO BASSES Commercial User

    Jul 1, 2005
    Florida Swamp
    CataldoBasses: Designer/Builder ThunderBuckerPickups:Consultant
    No problem. Nitro over minwax tinted white waterbase on alder:


    and over straight white minwax waterbase on ash:


    Sealer no filler.

    Generally you can use lacquer over waterbase stain or paint with good results. Poly or enamel get tricky.
  8. Nice.
  9. I've sprayed the Deft lacquer that Home Depot has over Minwax stain and various Colortone and leather dyes with no issues. Just let the stain dry before you clear over it. Stain should be fine overnight or a day or two, at most, to clear coat.
    Dadagoboi likes this.
  10. Oh and read up on whether you want to do that "pre-raising" of the grain business. I'm not 100% convinced it was necessary in my case but I did it anyway, and ended up raising a soft spot on my body that essentially came off and left me with a gap in the body that I could not properly fill.
  11. sowilson


    Jul 5, 2013
    as always, try your complete finish schedule on scrap first. Then proceed if you're happy with the results
    Dadagoboi likes this.
  12. hopsbb


    Nov 8, 2014
    I got the body stained today. Gonna let ithe hang in the shop for a day or two and see how it goes.

  13. Christopher DBG

    Christopher DBG Commercial User

    May 18, 2015
    Westerly, RI
    Luthier/Owner, Christopher Bass Guitar
    Not sure if you are going to take some advice giver earlier about filling the grain black/dark, but if you do make sure you put on a washcoat of either sanding sealer, vinyl sealer or thinned nitro. If you don't the stain in the filler will ruin your orange finish.

    BTW, Behlen Instrument Lacquer is wonderful stuff, it's the brand I use, but make sure you follow their direction which say you MUST put a coat of vinyl sealer on the instrument before the lacquer. My guess is there is something in the lacquer that makes it flexible but at the same time keeps it from adhering strongly to bare wood. I know skipping the vinyl sealer is a bad idea from experience.
  14. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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