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Applying Water Base Finishes

Hand Application of Water Base Finishes

Milk Paints and Glaze Effects

Spray Application

Trouble Shooting Guide

EF Water Base Finishes - Hand Application

Surface Preparation

All surfaces should be clean and free from all dirt and oils. Sand raw wood in the direction of the grain starting with a coarser grit sand paper such #120, and finish the final sanding with a finer grit sandpaper such as #220.  Water base finishes need a smoother surface than oil base finishes. Do not use tack cloths when using water based finish. Tack cloths contain oil and will contaminate the surface. On certain woods such as oak and ash, pre-wet the wood with a damp cloth to raise the grain before final sanding. Allow the dampened wood to dry 30 minutes before the final sanding. This will provide a smoother final finish.
 

Temperature and humidity

Water base finishes must be applied at temperatures above 65 F. Cooler temperatures will adversely affect how the finish will level and harden, causing fish-eyes or craters. If it is cold enough to wear a sweater it is too cold to apply a water base finish. The surface of the wood must also be warm. If you turn the heat on when you enter your shop in the morning, the air heats up quickly but your furniture will still be cold for some time. Check the surface to see if it is warm. Also, check the temperature of the finish. Warming cold finish by setting the can next to a heater or setting the container in some hot water for 5 minutes will improve the ease of application.

In hot temperatures (85F – 100F) the finish may dry too fast. Use EF Extender to open (increase) the dry time. Finishes that dry too fast may not completely level out before all the water evaporates from the finish. This can result in a poor appearance.

High humidity can cause the finishes to take longer to dry but will not harm the final finish.

Maintenance and care

Water base finishes take 7 days before they are ready for daily use. To maintain the finish clean surface with a damp washcloth and wipe dry. Cleaners such as Pledge and Murphy’s Oil Soap are not recommended because they leave a dull residue on the finish. Polishes such as lemon oil or orange oil work well for routine maintenance.

 

Restoring an old surface

Top coats may be recoated at any time in the future. Simply wipe down the surface with mineral spirits to remove any grease or dirt, lightly sand with #320 or finer, and then apply another coat.

 

Mixing and Tinting

Mix Gloss and satin together to get a Semi-gloss top coat. Tinting may be accomplished by adding 10 to 20% EF Stain to an EF Top Coat.

 

Hardwood Floors

Use EF High Performance Polyurethane.

 

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Milk Paints and Glaze Effects

EF Country Milk Paints

Classic interior/exterior paints for use with furniture, crafts, cabinets and outdoor furniture.  Uniquely engineered from the latest paint technology, Milk Paints can be used directly from the can to produce a high quality satin sheen.  Milk Paint can applied directly to raw wood, but the use of primer is recommended on heavy grained woods such as Oak, Parawood, or Pine, or if you’re covering a dark wood with a light color. Primer also seals the wood providing a good base for paint to adhere to and may save you an extra paint coat.  Use Red Primer under darker colors and White Primer under lighter colors. 

A. Before applying primer, sand raw wood in the direction of the grain starting with a coarser grit sand paper such #120, and finish the final sanding with a finer grit sandpaper such as #220. Remove dust with air or a damp cloth. Do not use sticky tack cloths.  Stir primer thoroughly.  Apply evenly following grain with a Handipainter pad or foam brush. Milk Paints and Primer can also be sprayed.  Refer to product label for instructions. Dry time 2-4 hours.

B.  Stir Milk Paint thoroughly.  Apply over bare wood or over primed surface (see previous paragraph for sanding and primer information) with Handipainter pad or foam brush. Normal dry time is 2-4 hours.  Heavy coats, high humidity, and cooler temperatures may lengthen dry time for up to 8-10 hours.

C.   Buff between coats using #320 -#400 grit paper or #320/superfine sanding pads.  Two to three coats of Milk Paint are recommended.  Apply PolyAcrylic, High Performance, or Pro Series topcoats for added durability or to increase sheen.

 EF Glaze Effects

EF Glaze Effects are translucent water base colors used to create beautiful faux and decorative finishes. Suitable for furniture, crafts, cabinets, & walls.  Glaze Effects can be brushed, rolled, ragged or sprayed on. Available in six colors and a clear base for creating custom colors.  Use with EF Wood Stain, Country Colors, Country Milk Paints, and Kids Colors to achieve any custom color.

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How to Spray EF PolyAcrylic Waterbase Finish

We recommend the EagleSpray HVLP unit available from Joe Kastner at 800-966-5223.

 

Surface Preparation

All surfaces should be clean and free from dirt and oil. Sand surface using fine grit sandpaper such as #180-#220. Water base finishes need a smoother surface than oil base finishes. Do not use steel wool. Steel wool can leave behind tiny particles in the wood that can rust after the finish has been applied. Do not use tack cloths when using water based finishes! Tack cloths contain oil and will contaminate the surface.

Soft woods such as Pine and Aspen absorb stain at an uneven rate and may respond better to staining if the wood bas been presealed. EF Natural stain can be applied to raw wood to condition the surface for uniform penetration of the stain. Presealing will cause the final stain to be lighter. Always test your color on a hidden part of the furniture! Allow the EF Natural stain to dry 1 hour before applying your final stain color.

Note: With hardwoods such as oak and ash, begin by pre-wetting the wood with a damp cloth to raise the grain. Allow the dampened wood to dry 30 minutes before the final sanding. This will provide a smoother final finish.

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Spraying EF PolyAcrylic

EF PolyAcrylic is ready to spray from the container. Thinning is not necessary. However, in hot climates, EF Extender can be used with the EF PolyAcrylic to extend the open time.

EF PolyAcrylic can be sprayed with HVLP systems or conventional sprayers. If you are using a sprayer that has been used for oil base or lacquers, clean the unit thoroughly and rinse with warm water before using. Apply a thin coat first that will dry and harden faster. Sand this first coat down to a smooth base on which to build your finish coats. With water base finishes it is better to spray 2 thin coats rather than 1 heavy coat.

Practice makes perfect! If you have never sprayed finishes before, take a large piece of cardboard and practice your technique first. Spray water on the cardboard to learn how the gun works. Check your fluid settings and adjust the controls to get comfortable with the spray angles and to develop your technique.

Keep your gun at a 90* angle, 6-8" from the surface. On large flat areas, use wet, even patterns 6 to 8’ wide. Over lap each pass 25% to conceal lines. For narrow surfaces, reduce the fan pattern to 2-3" to reduce overspray. Break your work into sections such as dresser top or drawer fronts. Spraying too large of an area can result in a textured grainy surface. A correctly sprayed finish should appear even and glossy. It is important to spray enough material to allow proper flow and leveling of the finish. If you have not obtained a good finish check one of the following factors:

Trouble Shooting Guide for Spraying EF Water Base Finishes

1. Rough, dry surface. This is called dry spray. You may have sprayed too lightly. Resand the finish with #320 paper and apply a heavier coat. Keep your gun at 6-8" from the surface.

2. Dimples in the finish. This is called orange peel, caused by spraying in temperatures that are too cool. Cooler temperatures will adversely affect how the finish will level and harden. Water base finishes must be applied at temperatures above 65 F. If it is cold enough to wear a sweater it is too cold to apply a water base finish. The surface of the wood must also be warm. If you turn the heat on when you enter your shop in the morning, the air heats up quickly but your furniture will still be cold for some time. Check the surface to see if it is warm. Also, check the temperature of the finish. Warming cold finish by setting the can next to a heater or setting the container in some hot water for 5 minutes will improve the ease of application.

Note: Larger dimples are called "fish-eyes" or "craters". Cool temperatures can cause these, but the more likely source is contamination of the finish with either wax or silicone.

3. Blush. Blush is the term for a cloudy, milky appearance in the finish, has two causes. The most common reason is incompatible stain. For example, using a water base top coat over a heavy oil base stain. When the top coat is applied, the oil in the stain seeps up through the finish and reacts with the acrylic causing a chemical blush. To prevent this, use a quick drying water based stain. If you choose to use oil base stain, seal the stain with a coat of shellac or lacquer sealer. This will provide a barrier between the oil and the acrylic. Proper drying time between the oil stain and finish coats is essential!

The other cause for blushing is high humidity. Spraying water base finish in humidities of over 75% may cause blushing because moisture becomes trapped beneath the finish and cannot evaporate. You can prevent this condition by increasing air movement in the finishing area with a fan. All water needs to evaporate is sufficient air movement. You can also improve drying conditions by increasing the temperature in the drying area.

4. Surface is not leveling out. In hot temperatures (85F – 100F) the finish may dry too fast. Use EF Extender to open (increase) the dry time. Finishes that dry too fast may not completely level out before all the water evaporates from the finish.

Note: High humidity can cause the finishes to take longer to dry but will not harm the final finish.

EF Stains and Top Coats are perfect for children’s toys and furniture All EF Stains and EF Top Coats are non-toxic after drying!

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Quality Wood Furniture of Leesville, Louisiana

8049 Shrevesport Hwy
Leesville, Louisiana  71446
337-239-7070  FAX:  337-239-6644

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