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Forum topic by Howie posted 04-07-2011 02:42 PM 991 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Howie's profile


2656 posts in 2345 days

04-07-2011 02:42 PM

What percent do you consider being too high to varnish a piece?

-- Life is good.

9 replies so far

View Bill Davis's profile

Bill Davis

226 posts in 3346 days

#1 posted 04-07-2011 03:25 PM

I’m not sure there is a maximum humidity for applying varnish. That is unless the specific product has a requirement. Be aware though that higher humidity does slow curing as does low temperature. I have read a minimum temperature for applying varnish. That being 60 deg F.

View juniorjock's profile


1930 posts in 3187 days

#2 posted 04-07-2011 04:06 PM

Howie, are you asking about the humidity in the air or the moisture percentage in the lumber?
- JJ

View Carl Webster's profile

Carl Webster

82 posts in 2220 days

#3 posted 04-07-2011 04:09 PM

I’ve lived in the South all my years and everything that I’ve built furniture wise has been finished with varnish/poly. The only problem you will have with high humidity is that it will lenghen the drying time of your finish.

-- Carl in SC

View CharlieM1958's profile


16229 posts in 3640 days

#4 posted 04-07-2011 04:19 PM

Yeah, here in New Orleans you could never finish anything if humidity was a deal-breaker.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Howie's profile


2656 posts in 2345 days

#5 posted 04-07-2011 04:30 PM

Junior I was referring to the air. Thanks for asking.

Thanks to all I appreciate the answers. I’ve already stained the piece(china cabinet) one day ago and the humidity today is 92% already. I’m going to poly it today.

-- Life is good.

View GMman's profile


3902 posts in 3119 days

#6 posted 04-07-2011 04:44 PM

Howie I use Latex varnish and I try to wait for a rainy day to apply, it takes longer to dry but you get a great finish.
So I would go for high humidity.

View Woodwrecker's profile


3912 posts in 2997 days

#7 posted 04-07-2011 06:53 PM

In another month, I bet it’s going to be so humid in Seffner, that drying times will be doubled from what they are right now.
I know in Kissimmee that when the humidity gets nuts, my stuff stays tacky for what seems like forever.

Just move it to the side and get busy on your next project Howie ! LOL

-- Eric, central Florida

View juniorjock's profile


1930 posts in 3187 days

#8 posted 04-07-2011 08:00 PM

I keep a de-humidifer in the shop going 24-7 and even with that, it will go up to around 75% now and then. Especially on rainy day. Seems like it’s higher early in the morning and then gradually goes down to about 40%. Like everyone else said, you’ll probably be okay, but the drying time and time between coats will be longer.
- JJ

View Steven H's profile

Steven H

1117 posts in 2482 days

#9 posted 04-08-2011 02:47 AM

75 degrees and 50% humidity.

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