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Forum topic by simmers posted 01-20-2012 04:27 PM 1536 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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17 posts in 3705 days

01-20-2012 04:27 PM

Can anyone tell me the performance and application differences in water based lacquers verses solvent based?



-- simmers

6 replies so far

View Sawkerf's profile


1730 posts in 3305 days

#1 posted 01-20-2012 04:54 PM

Water based lacquer???

-- Adversity doesn't build reveals it.

View Alan S's profile

Alan S

181 posts in 3554 days

#2 posted 01-20-2012 06:29 PM

Water based lacquer really isn’t lacquer. It’s water based finish, named lacquer to promote its acceptance. Water based finish usually doesn’t add much color and can be described as “cold” looking. Nitrocellulose lacquer adds an amber hue that tends to get more pronounced with age. Both types dry fast. Water-based has no flammability concerns but nitro lacquer can be a real fire-hazard. I can’t tell you which is more durable. It probably depends on the product.

I’d recommend a book titled “Understanding Wood Finishing” by Bob Flexner. He goes into great detail on these types of finishes.


View bench_dogg's profile


63 posts in 3374 days

#3 posted 01-20-2012 06:39 PM

I’ve used both Deft and a product from Target Coatings called EM6000, I’ll compare those:

  • Sprays easy
  • Very durable finish
  • Tends to add a ‘blueish’ tint when dry
  • Very clear when dry
  • Drys quickly
  • Not as durable as EM6000
  • Stinks when spraying/drying

I would say the Deft gives off more of a ‘fine furniture’ look but is not as durable. I used some EM6000 on a table I made for my 2 year old over a year ago and it looks as good now as the day after I put it on. No way that would be the case if I used the deft. I am moving toward water based finishes at this point, mostly for the ease of cleanup. They are a good bit more $ though.

View 404 - Not Found's profile

404 - Not Found

2544 posts in 3206 days

#4 posted 01-20-2012 06:56 PM

Get it straight from the horses mouth here.

I have sprayed waterborne and acid catalyzed lacquer from the above manufacturer. My preference is for the acid cat.
It’s a more durable finish, alcohol resistant, and easier to get good results with. It also imparts more of an amber hue. If you are restricted by environmental constraints, the waterborne will give a more than acceptable finish, I just prefer the solvent based.

View TheDane's profile


5575 posts in 3900 days

#5 posted 01-20-2012 07:44 PM

I have used EM6000 on a couple of projects … results were more than acceptable. It is true, however, that it is not as warm as solvent-based finishes.

This project was stained with Watco Danish Oil, then got 5 topcoats of EM6000 with an HVLP sprayer:
Click for details


-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View bamajoey's profile


15 posts in 2557 days

#6 posted 01-20-2012 09:21 PM

I have used EM 6000 on a rifle stock and was very pleased with. Like bench dogg I also had a problem with it looking blueish until it dried. I discovered that I was recoating too soon and it wasn’t drying between coats, I was told by a Target Coating rep to put it in the sun for a few days. No problems after that.

-- Joey

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