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Best way to finish painted cabinets

by jonlan
posted 01-12-2018 08:45 PM


23 replies so far

View cabmaker's profile

cabmaker

1694 posts in 2713 days


#1 posted 01-12-2018 09:40 PM

If you like the results of the first cab job,,,,,,,just do the same thing

smell a problem.?......dont know what to tell you…..not a perfect world

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jonlan

51 posts in 791 days


#2 posted 01-12-2018 09:41 PM

Thanks – Just looking for alternatives. Trying my best to keep the odor down in the house but I see your point.

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tomsteve

753 posts in 1123 days


#3 posted 01-12-2018 10:26 PM

the odor is called
‘that new cabinet smell.”
its like “that new car smell”, cept for cabinets.
is there a 100% odorless paint?

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jonlan

51 posts in 791 days


#4 posted 01-12-2018 10:49 PM

I guess I was hoping for input on alternatives to what I know smells very bad which is Lacquer and Oil based paints (latex and water based products dont do that). I know folks use Latex to paint cabinets (right or wrong) so was wondering if there were alternatives or better ways to finish them.

I’ll keep experimenting. Thanks

View OSU55's profile

OSU55

1519 posts in 1893 days


#5 posted 01-12-2018 11:10 PM

Take a look at Target coatings. They have a wb laquer that can be tinted. Had good luck with it but wasnt used on hi use item like cabinets. I think their other more wear resistant coatings might be tintable. You definitely dont want to use latex. Look for wb acrylic enamels.

View Joel J's profile

Joel J

45 posts in 1843 days


#6 posted 01-12-2018 11:45 PM

I have shot SW Pro Classic (which is a 100% acrylic) through my HVLP gun with a 2.0 and 2.5 tip. What you do is use 60% paint, 30% windshield washer solvent (the blue stuff) and the Flotrol type product that Sherwin Williams stores sell ( I forget the name). I have done numerous pieces of furniture and a number of different kitchen cabinets and had factory quality results. There are some videos on YouTube showing the use of windshield washer solvent as a thinner you should check out. The nice part is you can handle the finish product inside an hour. Good luck.

-- Joel, Denver, CO

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jonlan

51 posts in 791 days


#7 posted 01-13-2018 01:37 AM

@Joel J – I’ve been looking at those paints. There appears to be an acrylic…

https://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/products/proclassic-waterborne-interior-acrylic-enamel

And then an acrylic-alkyd….

https://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/products/proclassic-interior-waterbased-acrylicalkyd

Which one did you use? I assume the top one (the acrylic). Trying to sort out the difference between them…

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Joel J

45 posts in 1843 days


#8 posted 01-13-2018 03:58 AM

It’s the first one that I have used. I typically shoot the satin. If you want to do some additional experimenting, I have shot some cheap water based latex from HD (like $ 7.00 qt.), thin with the windshield washer solvent and Flotrol type product and then shot the HD inexpensive brand of water base poly for floors (like $ 40.00 gal in the plastic jugs), once again satin, over the top. You have to shoot clear poly over latex or it will remain “sticky”. The clear poly, which you can coat over the top right away eliminates the paint from remaining “sticky/tacky”. I have finished a whole set of kitchen cabinets with SW oil based sandable primer, numerous coats of latex and clear poly all in one day with my hvlp gun. The finish seems real durable.

Lastly, on another note, the SW Pro Classic is very durable. I have it on my kitchen cabinets and after 4 years, they look as good as the day I finished them.

-- Joel, Denver, CO

View cabmaker's profile

cabmaker

1694 posts in 2713 days


#9 posted 01-13-2018 08:30 AM



I guess I was hoping for input on alternatives to what I know smells very bad which is Lacquer and Oil based paints (latex and water based products dont do that). I know folks use Latex to paint cabinets (right or wrong) so was wondering if there were alternatives or better ways to finish them.

I ll keep experimenting. Thanks

- jonlan

I predominantly use latex unless stained…....that includes latex underbody as well

View AUswimKC's profile

AUswimKC

36 posts in 1852 days


#10 posted 01-13-2018 01:08 PM

Benjamin Moore Advance. All day. Sprays beautifully and lays flat and glass even for this newbie. First time and every time after that. Thin 5-10% with distilled water.

I would do my absolute best to paint before install. I wouldn’t want anything, even water based, sprayed in the house

View rwe2156's profile

rwe2156

2796 posts in 1385 days


#11 posted 01-13-2018 02:27 PM

I’ve used SW ProClassic oil based and never thought the odor was that bad. The odor should be temporary but you should make sure your furnace air handler is sealed well. This, combined with insufficient exhaust ventilation, could be why the odors are getting in your house.

Check into SW Aqua Kem. You may also want to look into an HVLP sprayer with a bigger aperture for latex.

If Charles Neil chimes in, just do what he says ;-

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View skcj213's profile

skcj213

28 posts in 1369 days


#12 posted 01-13-2018 02:56 PM

Last year we remodeled our kitchen an I shot the cabinet doors with SW Pro Classic Alkyd Acrylic using the $100 HVLP turbine from Harbor Freight. I was amazed at how well they turned out, especially for being my first time spraying anything. I did a lot of research before painting since I had a very discerning customer(my wife) that had to be pleased with the results. The alkyd has similar properties as oil based, such as better leveling, without the smell and nasty cleanup. I thinned using just water to around 25 seconds using the viscosity cup that came with the sprayer.

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DavidOveracre

45 posts in 877 days


#13 posted 01-13-2018 03:18 PM

I will say that SW is trying to sell you their top dollar paint and 100$ is way more than they should be charging (I got a gallon for considerably less, which may have been because their 40% sale, which seems to be going on all the time, and a contractors discount). But Emerald is good paint, especially for your application. It’s a waterborne urethane modified alkyd enamel and lays nice and flat and gets hard and doesn’t smell really at all. I thinned it between 5-10% with water and shot it with a dinky two stage HVLP with a 2.5mm tip set. It lays nice and flat if thinned enough. If your using a HF hvlp then I assume you can only adjust flow and pattern, so if you can’t adjust it to get it to stop throwing spatter, thin it a bit more and it’ll spray just fine. In my experience with it, Floetrol didn’t do anything but give me tiny bubbles in the heavy areas and quite a few in general, had to sand them flat and recoat, and I tried using it twice. So water is all you need. While it will cover just fine on bare wood in two coats, I’d suggest a primer beforehand, it’ll raise some grain and give you a good base to sand down smooth so your enamel will look nice and smooth. I’ve used a couple different primers under it, doesn’t really matter.

-- Dave O.

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Thalweg

95 posts in 3310 days


#14 posted 01-13-2018 03:38 PM

I wish I could have seen this thread two weeks ago. I just finished painting some cabinets with the SW Pro Classic water based acrylic alkyd. SW assured me that I could spray it through my hvlp. The kid who was helping me (obviously young with limited experience) told me I could only thin it 10% and only with water. I mixed up a pint, and it took nearly an hour to shoot that one pint. It was just too thick. So I ended up brushing it on. The results aren’t bad. This stuff flows out very well, but it’s not the finish I was hoping for. I wen’t into SW with the intention of buying the oil based version, and they gave me the look that said “are you stupid?”, and proceeded to convince me that the water based would be much better.

From what I’m reading here, I could have thinned considerably more. I’ve never heard of using windshield washer fluid in paint before. I’ll have to look into that.

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a1Jim

116902 posts in 3481 days


#15 posted 01-13-2018 04:15 PM

Hello jonlan

Before addressing anything else your post said you shot some water base rubbed it out and used some steel wool and wax on it. using steel wool on water-based products is a definite NO NO if you end up recoating with water base you will have lots of little rust specs all over the place because steel wool leaves tiny little particle all over your surface even after wiping down your surface many times.
My wife and I are highly susceptible to fumes of almost any kind: smoke, perfume, most detergents, air fresheners. paint etc. We painted out living room with Home depot’s low VOC paint If I remember right is was this one
https://www.homedepot.com/p/BEHR-Premium-Plus-1-gal-PPU9-12-Prairie-House-Zero-VOC-Semi-Gloss-Enamel-Interior-Paint-305001/300400242
We were delighted that it hardly had any smell at all, for people who have problems with odors it’s a heaven sent. As for shooting your paint the newer electric spray guns to my surprise work very well with house paint. I’ve been spraying for 45 years so my opinion is not that of a new b to spraying. This is the one I recommend Charles Neil liked it.
https://www.amazon.com/HomeRight-C800971-Sprayer-Painting-Projects/dp/B071X9FZ7R/ref=sr_1_18?ie=UTF8&qid=1515859711&sr=8-18&keywords=electric+spray+paint+gun

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

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jonlan

51 posts in 791 days


#16 posted 01-13-2018 10:04 PM

Thanks for all the comments and feedback! I went this morning and bought a quart of the SW Emerald waterborne urethane. I took a sample piece of plywood, primed with with Zinsser BIN primer and sanded it down with 220 after it dried. Hit it with a tack cloth, and then sprayed the paint un-thinned through my 1.8mm HVLP gun. The paint was coming out without spitting (which I took to mean meant it didnt need to be thinned) but there just wasnt a lot of paint coming out. I started wondering if there was something wrong with the gun. The rate was consistent and didnt sem to change despite how much I backed out the feed screw for the needle. All the same, I painted the panel despite it taking quite awhile. The results from the first coat seem ok, but it’s definitely not perfectly smooth. Up close you can see small bumps. Im wondering if these will clear up with the second coat or if Im just not putting it on thick enough. The other issue might be that the paint seems to be drying quite quickly. So maybe its coming out of the gun too thin? This picture actually makes it look worse than I think it is but the lighting isnt great either…

I think I’ll let it sit until dry, hit it with some 320, and then try the second coat. I think I’ll also switch to me 2.5mm HVLP gun. Upon closer inspection of the 1.8mm gun during cleaning it looks like it wasnt cleaned out that well last time it was used (loaning tools is a problem I seem to have) so I wonder if the gun is just clogged up somewhere and likely garbage at this point (sigh). Oh well. Hoping that the second coat makes things smoother. Im also going to paint a second sample with the 2.5mm gun to see if the first coat with that looks better.

View Joel J's profile

Joel J

45 posts in 1843 days


#17 posted 01-13-2018 10:18 PM

Try using the M-1 Paint Additive and Extender. I will extend dry time and improves flow and leveling. SW sells it and I use it with all my waterborne paint jobs.

-- Joel, Denver, CO

View AUswimKC's profile

AUswimKC

36 posts in 1852 days


#18 posted 01-14-2018 02:32 PM

There are too many factors to provide feedback with know all of the parameters. Air pressure, gun settings, tip diameter, brand, paint, etc. Keep testing. You’ll find the optimum settings

View Kazooman's profile

Kazooman

932 posts in 1856 days


#19 posted 01-14-2018 04:46 PM


I have shot SW Pro Classic (which is a 100% acrylic) through my HVLP gun with a 2.0 and 2.5 tip. What you do is use 60% paint, 30% windshield washer solvent (the blue stuff) and the Flotrol type product that Sherwin Williams stores sell ( I forget the name). I have done numerous pieces of furniture and a number of different kitchen cabinets and had factory quality results. There are some videos on YouTube showing the use of windshield washer solvent as a thinner you should check out. The nice part is you can handle the finish product inside an hour. Good luck.

- Joel J

Just a note of caution from the paranoid organic chemist in me. A lot of windshield washer solution contains methanol. You can get a brief whiff of it when you clean your windshield. That is in a well vented car. I would not care to spray methanol vapors in an enclosed shop. If I did so I would use a good quality respirator with organic vapor absorption cartridges and then leave the area until the air has changed over. Just me, your results may vary.

View jonlan's profile

jonlan

51 posts in 791 days


#20 posted 01-15-2018 03:12 AM

Well after much messing around – and more struggles getting the paint to spray – I finally got it spraying the way I want. I tried 3 or 4 different tests last night. Mostly centering around using Floetrol to thin the paint and help wth leveling. All of them turned out awful. Today – I did some more reading and decided to thin the paint with 10% straight water. I couldnt be happier with the results. The paint sprayed awesome out of my HVLP with the 1.8mm tip. Great flow and it laid down perfectly. Two coats on a test board and it looks like this…

The picture doesnt do the finish justice. No splatter that I can see at all and a perfectly smooth finish to the touch. I sanded with 320 in between coats but it didnt even need it. It just worked. All of my sample pieces that had any Floetrol at all of them still feel tacky today.

I am much appreciative of all of the input and immensely relieved that I got the paint to work the way I wanted it too. Now I can move onto my favorite part – actually building the cabinets!

Thanks much to all who commented!

View rwe2156's profile

rwe2156

2796 posts in 1385 days


#21 posted 01-15-2018 02:29 PM

Yup newbie to spraying too. The very first thing I realized is I wasn’t thinning the paint enough. I was using the HF HVLP gun w/ oil based paint and it already looked thin enough, but it wasn’t.

In one of his finishing videos Charles Neil showed a very simple formula for determining viscosity: if the paint comes through the strainer about as fast as a medium pour rate, its thin enough. Very subjective but worked for me!

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View CharlesNeil's profile (online now)

CharlesNeil

2225 posts in 3774 days


#22 posted 01-15-2018 03:31 PM

some of these you tubes may help a little https://youtu.be/z8c7TWNW-no

https://youtu.be/XuJ2rNDhhDg

teaching all the ins and outs of finishing is very difficult ,
there are so many factors and so much speculation and confusion.
Everyone is looking for the magic bullet and it doesnt exist .
Spraying in my opinion is the fastest and easiest , but various finishes require different needle/nozzle sizes , air pressure , viscosity .
I will however say once you have a understanding of the basics , you can figure it out .
The biggest key is learning how wet to apply a finish to flow out, how to adjust a gun to achieve that, what can you thin what cant you , and on and on . I does seem complicated , and can be .. its like cooking, every pot and pane has a purpose , but can be used in various circumstances .. but then you add spices and how long you cook what , it can get interesting
I cant cook worth a flip BTW ,LOL

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jonlan

51 posts in 791 days


#23 posted 01-15-2018 03:40 PM

Thanks @CharlesNeil. I totally agree with you. I should have spent more time upfront trying to understand the basics before even trying. Having an understanding of what type of HVLP gun to use when (what size tip etc) as well as what thinners can be used would have saved me a lot of time. Moreover – starting with the basics is where I should have started. Water to thin a water borne finish.

Im looking at the 15+ sample boards I sprayed to get here (all of them not what I wanted but the last) and I dont regret doing any of it. I wasted a lot of time – but I learned a lot of what doesnt work as well.

Thanks to everyone that commented and helped me get here!

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