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What happens if you forget to sand between polyurethane coats?

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Forum topic by Thomas Anderson posted 06-05-2017 03:15 PM 2579 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Thomas Anderson

20 posts in 206 days


06-05-2017 03:15 PM

Put on a second coat forgetting to sand it between.

What’s likely to happen?

Is it fixable/sandable, or does it “soak” (for lack of better description) into the wood?

Fortunately it wasn’t my good piece, just a small trinket box.

Thanks!


14 replies so far

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4805 posts in 3798 days


#1 posted 06-05-2017 03:27 PM

The second coat may not adhere as well as to be expected. Might get away with it, but…....
Bill

-- bill@magraphics.us

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jdh122

962 posts in 2655 days


#2 posted 06-05-2017 03:35 PM

I think it’s highly unlikely to cause any problems.
Respected finishing expert Bob Flexner suggests that sanding between coats isn’t necessary for proper adhesion between coats. He (and pretty much everyone else) recommends doing it anyway, mostly in order to get rid of the dust nibs.
See http://www.popularwoodworking.com/article/the_7_myths_of_polyurethane

-- Jeremy, in the Acadian forests

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Thomas Anderson

20 posts in 206 days


#3 posted 06-05-2017 03:44 PM

Gotcha, thanks.

It didn’t look bad when I left for work, glad I got the good one sanded (the first piece) though.

We’ll see.

View jmartel's profile

jmartel

7529 posts in 1987 days


#4 posted 06-05-2017 03:46 PM

I don’t sand after the first coat of finish. I usually start sanding (leveling) the finish after the second. You shouldn’t have any problems.

-- The quality of one's woodworking is directly related to the amount of flannel worn.

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Thomas Anderson

20 posts in 206 days


#5 posted 06-05-2017 03:47 PM



I don t sand after the first coat of finish. I usually start sanding (leveling) the finish after the second. You shouldn t have any problems.

- jmartel

Oh wow, so you’ll do even more than 2 coats?

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SanderBash

8 posts in 198 days


#6 posted 06-05-2017 06:28 PM

I don’t think it would give you any problems, although as others mentioned it is always advised to improve adhesion.

I was finishing some oak slats for a table I welded a few years ago, using brush-on poly. Now, if you have ever finished oak with a brush, you surely won’t forget to sand between coats…

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Thomas Anderson

20 posts in 206 days


#7 posted 06-05-2017 06:32 PM

Oh

So does this stuff run easily?

I laid a cabinet on its’ back and gave it a coat, I propped the door open just a little so if it ran it wouldn’t glue it shut. With the door sloped a bit is it likely to dry unevenly? I just didn’t think it would hurt it because I’ve done completely verticle surfaces with no problem, they turned out great. It isn’t caked on there or anything.

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jmartel

7529 posts in 1987 days


#8 posted 06-05-2017 06:35 PM



Oh wow, so you ll do even more than 2 coats?

- Thomas Anderson

Typically 3-5 depending on the piece, the finish, and the look I am going for. 2 coats is rarely enough coverage.

-- The quality of one's woodworking is directly related to the amount of flannel worn.

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Thomas Anderson

20 posts in 206 days


#9 posted 06-05-2017 07:47 PM

I just went back to the condo on my lunch break to check it and it’s fine, looks great actually. Dried evenly and level, nice shine to it.

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Thomas Anderson

20 posts in 206 days


#10 posted 06-05-2017 07:50 PM

Oh wow, so you ll do even more than 2 coats?

- Thomas Anderson

Typically 3-5 depending on the piece, the finish, and the look I am going for. 2 coats is rarely enough coverage.

- jmartel

So what are you using, clear satin, semi, gloss etc?

I’m asking because I was wondering if the clear satin is supposed to be glossy or if its’ only purpose was to protect.

Plus a big concern of mine is I have a dehumidifier in the basement, so I know that will be drawing moisture out of the wood for a long time, eventually it’ll be completely dry. I’ll probably coat the insides too, of everything I make.

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jmartel

7529 posts in 1987 days


#11 posted 06-05-2017 07:57 PM

All of the above. Satin should have a satin sheen to it. That’s really the only way to describe it. The photo you posted above looks satin to me.

If you want to knock down the shine a bit, take some #0000 steel wool with a bit of paste wax and rub the wax in. Use little circular strokes and go over the entire box. Then do it again. Buff off the wax with a clean T-shirt/rag and it will be extremely smooth and even.

-- The quality of one's woodworking is directly related to the amount of flannel worn.

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Thomas Anderson

20 posts in 206 days


#12 posted 06-05-2017 08:00 PM

I sort of like it, it’s got a little shine to it but it’s not too much for a basement cabinet.

Hey, do you want to post a pic of one of your glossy ones?

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4758 posts in 2331 days


#13 posted 06-05-2017 08:11 PM

I wouldn’t coat the inside, at least not with that varnish. It will smell for a very long time. Best to use shellac or a waterborne finish.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View Thomas Anderson's profile

Thomas Anderson

20 posts in 206 days


#14 posted 06-05-2017 08:47 PM



I wouldn t coat the inside, at least not with that varnish. It will smell for a very long time. Best to use shellac or a waterborne finish.

- Fred Hargis

Thanks (I’m a rookie)

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