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Thread: Why did my spray lacquer with blush eliminator get crinkly?

  1. #1

    Why did my spray lacquer with blush eliminator get crinkly?

    Please explain why this happened. I have a set of black lacquer shelves and supports. I’d started awhile back, but never got back to it til just now. I just do this for “fun” . I have too many “fun” projects accumulated.

    My last coat of black lacquer developed blush. I am using lacquer in a spray can. It turned cold so I back-burnered the project. I ordered blush eliminator but it seemed like it was always either cold or rainy on the days I was home.

    We’ve had a couple of days of warm temperatures, no wind, and low humidity. So, yesterday I set it up in the garage again. I kept all the pieces plus the can in the house til I was ready to run them out and spray them.

    The blush eliminator worked beautifully on all the large flat surfaces. The shelves are now perfect.

    One of the uprights had blush on an edge. But it’s a forward edge, and will be very visible so I really wanted to get rid of it.

    I propped it up and sprayed the edge. But I must have had the can too close or used too much, because it got all crinkly / alligatored. I brought it in the house to dry inside under a lamp with an incandescent bulb to provide gentle heat.

    This afternoon ( a full day later) I sanded it down gently: I went down to 320 grit. I did not get it totally smooth, there were still tiny pinpoint dimples left. I did not want to risk going through all the coats of black lacquer. I don’t have any more, and I’m not close to a store. Besides, spraying just the edge without getting over spray on the front surface would be almost impossible.

    I thought I could use the blush eliminator to consolidate it and eliminate the sanding lines. This time I was careful to have the can further away and not to use too much. But it immediately got all crinkly again.

    Sorry for the long story: but what did I do wrong?

    Now, the weather will turn rainy tomorrow and become cold the day after. So I am basically out of time. I can’t spray in the house because lacquer smells too bad for my spouse.

    How can I retrieve this? Thanks for your help.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Tasmania
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    Wrinkling usually happens when too much coating material is applied. It is most common with oil based enamels and similar alkyd coatings. It's not so common with lacquer. Here is a solution based on your limited time and using the same coating material.

    First, you need to sand the area flat to get rid of the wrinkles. Take your time and use a cork block. Using a block is the only way to get it flat. You will need to take care so that you don't sand through the colour.

    Next, mask off the affected area to protect all the good bits. Tape neatly along the nearest edges or other features that will hide the touch up lines.

    Next, apply a very light coat of lacquer. Just mist it on. Let it get nearly dry and then mist on another coat. Let it dry and then mist on another coat. You will need to resist the temptation to go too wet. Let it dry. Remove the masking.

    If it is gloss, you can polish it up to match the gloss of the rest of the job. If it is satin, you will need to use a fine scourer or similar to restore the finish to match the rest.

    See how you go. Cheers
    To break the rules, you must first master the rules.

  3. #3
    I am using high gloss, as the shelves are going inside a vintage Japanese lacquer cabinet and I’d like them to match.

    When I apply it (the lacquer or the blush eliminator) , I usually put enough on til I don’t see any spray particles on the surface. It usually takes more than one pass. The second it’s evenly wet, I stop.

    I need to go get some more black lacquer. Or are you saying I can still use the blush eliminator to re-wet the lacquer once I have to sanded down again?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Tasmania
    Posts
    1,342
    If it's just on an edge, I would do all possible to apply the lacquer in conditions where it won't blush and forget the blush eliminator. You can do this by making sure the item is pre-warmed to about 25C. Get everything ready, warm the job, take it outside, spray it and bring it back into the warm. Cheers
    To break the rules, you must first master the rules.

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