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Re: [MedievalSawdust] Foodsafe finish

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  • Tim Bray
    Brian, ... The only furniture finishes that are soluble in alcohol are wax and shellac. Lacquer, once fully dried, is not dissolved or even softened by
    Message 1 of 2 , Sep 8, 2004
      Brian,

      >I've seen what alcohol can do to furniture finishes.

      The only furniture finishes that are soluble in alcohol are wax and
      shellac. Lacquer, once fully dried, is not dissolved or even softened by
      alcohol. Varnishes (such as polyurethane) are not affected by either
      alcohol or lacquer thinner. That's basically how you can identify an
      unknown finish that needs repair: Find an inconspicuous spot and try some
      alcohol on it - if it softens, then it's shellac. If not, try some lacquer
      thinner - if that softens it, then the finish is lacquer; if not, it's
      probably varnish.

      >There's a reason why Ashley Furniture a few years back started advertising
      >the use of a new alcohol resistant finish on their bedroom furniture.

      And that reason would be... marketing. Lacquers and varnishes are hardly
      "new."

      >BTW the leather bottles that I was talking about still reeked of solvent.

      Then the finish had not fully dried/cured, had it?

      As Bob Flexner used to constantly tell people, ALL common wood finishes are
      safe once fully cured. Especially epoxies - if they are mixed in the
      correct proportions and allowed to fully cure (give it at least a week and
      preferably a month), they are inert.

      There is probably more misinformation and paranoia over wood finish
      toxicity than any other single subject I can think of. Let's not
      perpetuate it!

      Cheers,
      Colin


      Albion Works
      Furniture and Accessories
      For the Medievalist!
      http://www.albionworks.net
      http://www.albionworks.com
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