Clear gloss lacquer is one of those hardware items that may come across as advanced or too technical especially to those who are new to doing hands-on home improvement. But once you learn and understand what it’s for, you’ll find that it’s easy to use, and that it’s the DIY enthusiast’s go-to for giving woodwork premium gloss and toughness against harsh elements in the environment.
New to tackling wood projects and working with clear gloss lacquer? We got you covered! Check out some sample small projects you can do on weekend, along with information on the must-knows such as what clear gloss lacquer is made of, how it differs from varnish, and on what substrates or surfaces you can use the product on.
Clear Gloss Lacquer 101
Lacquer is derived from the resin of a tree that’s commonly referred to as a varnish tree. Harvested from the tree’s sap, this resin is refined and mixed with lacquer thinner to produce a durable finish for wood. The top of mind when it comes to adding a high gloss, durable top layer for wood, most lacquers today are formulated with nitrocellulose which is a compound that allows a thin coat of lacquer to dissolve or merge into a previously-applied film or coat.
Clear Gloss Lacquer vs. Varnish
Aside from shellac, lacquer is also often wrongly interchanged with varnish. While they share the same function of providing a protective layer on wood, varnish and lacquer differ in formulation giving these differences:
Sheen & Appearance
At first glance, both varnish and lacquer may appear the same with a shiny, glossy finish. But experts say that varnishes produce semi-gloss or satin sheen, secondary to lacquer which usually has a sheen of high gloss.
Although both leave hard, durable films on surfaces, lacquer is tougher than varnish, It is highly resistant to damage, especially those caused by acid, alkali, water, and abrasions.
Varnish takes longer to apply than lacquer. Usually, it needs to be brushed on at a slower speed, where with lacquer, you have the option to spray it onto surfaces. On top of this, lacquer dries faster compared to varnish due to its fast-evaporating solvents.
Weekend Project Ideas with Clear Gloss Lacquer
Any homemaker or DIY enthusiast would agree: weekends are made for projects that either beautify or add more to your home’s functionality! And you can never run out of things to do especially when it comes to home decor and home improvement. Here are a few ideas you might want to consider doing this coming weekend.
- Add a New Shine on Antique Pieces
If you’re looking to redecorate with furniture that breathes character, you might want to consider bringing out the family’s antique pieces and re-integrating them into your modern living spaces. Picture a rustic look to the past with wooden chairs, tables or accent pieces refurbished with a fresh coat of clear gloss lacquer.
- Retouch the Rustic
Wooden cabinets, tables, handrails and wood trims — do a quick check of wood pieces around your home that need a little sprucing up. Quick tip on application: application through a spray gun work eliminates problems with small or detailed wood pieces.
- Small Home Décor Wood Projects
Recent regular content on online homemaking communities is proof that wood décor pieces are making a comeback in the interior design scene. And with all the time that the pandemic has left most of us with, why not do some weekend DIY woodwork! Here’s a simple project to get you started:
DIY Monitor Riser
- Tools and Materials:
- 1 pc. 10in x 20in wood
- Peg legs or furniture legs
- Wood stain
- Tack cloth
- 220-grit sandpaper
- Liquid nails
- Clear Gloss Lacquer
- Clean and sand your wood, especially around the edges.
- Stain wood and apply clear gloss lacquer.
- Install furniture legs with liquid nails.
Quick Tips for Working with Clear Gloss Lacquer
As with most paints, proper application helps with ensuring a flawless output. But also because lacquer has solvents that may harm your health, careful handling and safety first is a must. Keep these pointers in mind when working with clear gloss lacquer:
- Consider the weather when planning. For paint to stick well, the environment shouldn’t be too humid or too dry. Experts recommend a temperature range of 21°C to 32°C.
- As with any paint, make sure that your surface is even, and free of dent and debris. Allot some time for proper surface preparation. Remember that a glossy sheen tends to highlight surface imperfections.
- If working outdoors, make sure to stay out of the sun, or find a shaded spot to do your lacquer painting in. Direct sunlight causes lacquer to blister.
- If working indoors, see to it that your room is well-ventilated.
- Allow your lacquered project to cure properly. As much as possible, limit movements within its perimeter, as this may cause dust or debris to fly unto your project’s wet finish.
Treasure Island Industrial Corporation has Clear Gloss Lacquer which exhibits high gloss, good adhesion, fair weather resistance and good gloss retention for wood furniture, wood trims and other woodcrafts. Product available via Lazada.