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Sunday, 20 January 2008

Mixing Shellac - Making the Cut

Mixing shellac is simple, although you may wonder why you'd want to when it can be purchased premixed. Shellac has a six month shelf life once mixed with alcohol using an older solution of mixed shellac will result in longer drying times and more prone to water spotting.

Shellac flakes are the raw material of mixed shellac and when stored away from heat and sunlight offer a much longer shelf life. By buying shellac in flake form you can mix only what you intend to use.

To make a solution, shellac flakes are mixed with denatured alcohol. The amount of shellac and alchol can vary depending how thick or thin you want the mix to be. It is worth keeping in mind that the thinner shellac is easier to apply smoothly and dries a lot faster. Once mixed the shellac flakes start to dissolve almost immediately. To make a pint of sealer use the 2:16 ratio (2 oz. of shellac flakes dissolved in 16 oz. of alcohol).


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