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Transtint And Two-part Urethane


levelhead86
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I read on the TransTint website that you cannot mix it with two-part urethane. My question is if you can still use it as a clear coat on top of a TransTint dyed guitar, or will that cause some kind of adverse reaction?

Thanks

Use the Trans tint in a dewaxed shellac, The two part will work over it as a clear coat. Just make sure to give the shellac a few days to REALLY flash off and scuff it some to allow a good tooth for Bonding with the poly.

MK

Edited by MiKro
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Use the Trans tint in a dewaxed shellac, The two part will work over it as a clear coat. Just make sure to give the shellac a few days to REALLY flash off and scuff it some to allow a good tooth for Bonding with the poly.

MK

Certainly not trying to make any insinuations about your ability or experience, but have you ever done this before, MiKro? I don't have any experience using two pack poly, but the reason that I ask is that I had a lot of problems using conversion varnish over shellac. CV is also a two pack finish.

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Use the Trans tint in a dewaxed shellac, The two part will work over it as a clear coat. Just make sure to give the shellac a few days to REALLY flash off and scuff it some to allow a good tooth for Bonding with the poly.

MK

Certainly not trying to make any insinuations about your ability or experience, but have you ever done this before, MiKro? I don't have any experience using two pack poly, but the reason that I ask is that I had a lot of problems using conversion varnish over shellac. CV is also a two pack finish.

No problem and I may be wrong on that since I have not done it myself, as I don't use Urethane or Poly. I do know some woodworkers that have used it on other wood projects and have had good results. Now, I can only base that on what I saw, but I cannot attest to the durability of it over time. So no problem with asking me to define my answer. So my take on it would be as always, use a test piece and try it. I think that is understood by most when it comes to finish, but then again I sometimes assume too much :D

Mike

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I did a little searching today, and most of the instances on the internet I've found that refer to using poly over shellac are referring to hardware store type poly, like Minwax. That stuff is very different from 2k poly. It dries and cures much more slowly, and the final film is generally more flexible. When I used shellac under conversion varnish, it was a disaster. Both of the guitars I did developed heavy cracking, beginning about 1 to 3 weeks after they were finished. I shot about 2 coats of 2# shellac as a sealer, then two more tinted color coats, followed by (IIRC) three more "barrier" coats of shellac. I sanded everything smooth to 220 or 320 grit prior to top coating with 6 coats of conversion varnish. I think that conversion varnish dries harder than poly, so it may be more prone to cracking. I know that at least part of my problem was the thickness of the shellac. If you kept the shellac to a couple very thin washcoats, there would probably be less chance of cracking.

I'm still a little unsure about what levelhead has done. Did you dye the wood directly with TransTint, or are you looking for a way to shoot tinted colorcoats? In the first case, I would think you're probably fine to just shoot poly directly over the guitar. I think you could use one or two very thin coats of shellac to "lock in" the color if you want, but you may be better of finding a compatible sealer. Most companies that make polyurethane intended for wood finishing also sell a sealer product. In the second case, I don't really feel comfortable offering much advice, but I can tell you that building a significant thickness of shellac under a 2k product is a bad idea.

Edited by fookgub
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Thanks again for all the research, and replies, guys...

I haven't actually finished the guitar yet... the plan is to do a translucent burst over the whole thing. I figured I'd be mixing the TransTint with solvent, and spraying it over the whole thing... then adding then adding TransTint to my desired medium (I was originally hoping it to be urethane + catalyst) for the burst part, and then spraying the same medium (sans TransTint) over it as my clear coat. The goal being to stain the whole thing (so that the grain is easy to see); then to use the TransTint+medium to achieve a reasonably translucent burst pattern, while still deepening the finish and increasing the opacity of the sides/edges (to help hide the transition between top and the rest of the body wood).

As for my preference for the urethane... it's because I've used lacquer (primer, color, clear) and I was moderately satisfied with the results. But, my last project I used the urethane and I fell in love with how it covered, how it sprayed, the depth of the finish, and how fast and hard it dried. I've noticed that you don't need to seal the wood before applying it either, which is a relief. Also, I have a bunch of urethane still around. :D

However, I saw that TransTint can't be mixed with the urethane I'm using... so that put a real wrench in the works. The shellac sounds like a reasonable option, but it's starting to sound like more trouble than it's worth. That in mind, I'm guessing I can just return to using the lacquer for this project...?

If you are looking for a transparent look, you can also use candy colors. Createx and Auto Air Colors make transparents and candy colors that are inexpensive, waterbased, and work just fine under 2 part poly's.

Hmm... I'll consider that. Thanks

Edited by levelhead86
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I've noticed that you don't need to seal the wood before applying it either, which is a relief. Also, I have a bunch of urethane still around. :D

However, I saw that TransTint can't be mixed with the urethane I'm using... so that put a real wrench in the works. The shellac sounds like a reasonable option, but it's starting to sound like more trouble than it's worth. That in mind, I'm guessing I can just return to using the lacquer for this project...?

If you are looking for a transparent look, you can also use candy colors. Createx and Auto Air Colors make transparents and candy colors that are inexpensive, waterbased, and work just fine under 2 part poly's.

Hmm... I'll consider that. Thanks

Createx are pretty good too. As far as not having to seal the wood, it depends on the type of wood, Mahogany and woods alike will need to get sealed, maple and alder may be not.

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Why don't you get the StewMac color tone stain? I used it on my bike helmet with 2K poly and I had no issues with it.

The makeup of StewMac's stain is different? This I wouldn't have assumed, since they're so similar. The only reason I was going to use TransTint is because I'm ordering a veneer for the same project, and the place I'm getting it from offers TransTint, so I'll save on shipping versus ordering separately from StewMac. However, if it'll work with the urethane I've got, then it's worth the extra.

Createx are pretty good too. As far as not having to seal the wood, it depends on the type of wood, Mahogany and woods alike will need to get sealed, maple and alder may be not.

If I used a translucent/candy finish all the way across... will it still have the effect of "popping" the grain on my veneer like stain would, or no?

Also, it's on an RG7420... so I'm guessing that's basswood, and then the veneer will likely be maple.

Edited by levelhead86
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The makeup of StewMac's stain is different? This I wouldn't have assumed, since they're so similar.

The only thing different, are the labels stuck on the outside of the bottle and StewMac gives some colors a different name.

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Why don't you get the StewMac color tone stain? I used it on my bike helmet with 2K poly and I had no issues with it.

The makeup of StewMac's stain is different? This I wouldn't have assumed, since they're so similar.

The only thing different, are the labels stuck on the outside of the bottle and StewMac gives some colors a different name.

Hmm... very interesting indeed.

Also, a quote from the joewoodworker.com page on TransTint:

Known Incompatibilties

TransTints are incompatible* when added to the following products:

Waterlox oil based finishes

Watco Danish Oil, Minwax Wipe on Poly, Minwax Antique Oil, and similar wipe on oil finishes (excluding gels)

All oil based liquid stains (excluding oil based gel stains)

Mineral Spirits

Fuhr 255 Urethane water based finish (when added to finish)

2K (2-component) polyurethane finishes

* You can always apply TransTint to the wood, let dry, and then apply these products.

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A common technique is to dye the wood the main base color of the burst, seal it with a wach coat of clear and then work the burst in with transparent colors. Some people even prefer to just use a transparent color and feel that it gives a more 3d look to the grain, I have not tried it yet so I have to take their word for it.

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The makeup of StewMac's stain is different? This I wouldn't have assumed, since they're so similar.

The only thing different, are the labels stuck on the outside of the bottle and StewMac gives some colors a different name.

I think that they are not. If they were Transtint will be compatible with 2K paints.

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I have both Colortone and transtint and I mix the two together. So far, I have mostly diluted my stain with Everclear and shot right on the wood, then clear whatever over that ( 1 part poly, super-glue, hard telling what else).

If I ever want to know if those stains will work with 2 part poly, I'm just going to try it out on scrap. Manufacturers are often quite conservative with how they recommend their products are used. Although in this case, I wouldn't be surprised if the people who make the transtint are "hands on" enough that they actually thoroughly experimented with mixing their stains with every possible medium.

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I think that they are not. If they were Transtint will be compatible with 2K paints.

Pretty much impossible that they are not the same. Do a google search including both names. Plus, all the instructions, and safetly precautions, written on the back labels are *exactly* identical, each and every word.

Edit :

Here from the homestead finishing website :

"The following fine retailers sell TransFast and/or TransTint Dyes

Stewart-MacDonald's Guitar Shop Supply

(our dyes are sold under the "Color-Tone" product name)"

***As far as I can tell (with nothing more than a quick search) is that the *TransFast* is a powder.

Edited by soapbarstrat
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Could be something where it works with most brands, but not all of 2K and TransTint doesn't want to accept any direct risk. If StewMac sells the same product under their own label, StewMac accepts the risk. So TransTint gets to seel more of their product and if anything goes wrong with the StewMac ones, they are off the hook.

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If I ever want to know if those stains will work with 2 part poly, I'm just going to try it out on scrap. Manufacturers are often quite conservative with how they recommend their products are used. Although in this case, I wouldn't be surprised if the people who make the transtint are "hands on" enough that they actually thoroughly experimented with mixing their stains with every possible medium.

This isn't really a test, its a check to make sure nothing blows up right away. Its probably fine for your own personal instruments, but for customers you never know how long it will really last. When you spend time talking to people who really test, they use UV baths and electron microscopes, etc to test. They know what their product will do over the long term.

It's also how House of Kolor knows long term that their products are not compatible with even other products from their parent company Valspar. While every Uro is essentially the same the amount and strength of solvents is vastly different.

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One thing you need to understand before talking about UV is were the guitar will spend his life. I painted my bike helmet with Colortone stain on 2 part DuPont clear. And I have left it in the sun for an entire riding season and there is no fade on the color. BUT, I did the same thing on my tail lights on my car, but with nitro and the things faded to nothing in less than 3 months. Most 2k paint have an UV inhibitor so that it will protect the base coat from discoloration.

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The UV testing they do in the labs is more than color, it also tests for adhesion and other issues. They simulate years of weather changes etc.

My point is when the spray a scrap experiment is used we only know that something will not blow up, fall off, peel etc. right away. We don't know what 3, 5 or 10 years will do. How many posts have we seen around here where something has fallen apart weeks or months later? I think there is too much if I spray it now and it sticks that we've tested and everythings great, and thats okay for your own instrument I guess. But it's a gamble in the long term much like crossing brands of uro's. We are doing a disservice to people when we say ignore the manufacturers instructions and see if it works out.

The guys I've meet who write the tech sheets are great painters who care about people's paint jobs and don't just write what they do for the money.

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