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More coats poly = more scratch resistance?

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Forum topic by LiveEdge posted 02-09-2014 10:58 PM 1738 views 1 time favorited 29 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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LiveEdge

242 posts in 279 days


02-09-2014 10:58 PM

I’m nearing the finished stage for an alder table I’m building. I’ve finished the base and non-essential parts with water-based poly, but I’m planning on switching to an oil-based poly for the table top to add heat resistance. I wondered if more coats will also provide more scratch resistance? Seven coats better than three? Or does it not work that way. Alder is fairly soft, so if I could add a little protection, that would be great. However, my wife does not want a “shiny” look so I think other finishes are less of an option.


29 replies so far

View bbc557ci's profile

bbc557ci

543 posts in 732 days


#1 posted 02-09-2014 11:39 PM

I would think the more layers of finish applied, the deeper the scratch can be before ya hit wood.

-- Bill, central NY...no where near the "big apple"

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LiveEdge

242 posts in 279 days


#2 posted 02-09-2014 11:53 PM

Maybe I should use a different word. How about “ding” resistance? In other words, does poly actually add to the “hardness” of the surface?

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Dallas

2925 posts in 1145 days


#3 posted 02-10-2014 12:03 AM

In my opinion probably not, but you are not limited to Poly.

Poly will mark pretty easily. Have you thought about using a lacquer finish and when it needs a repair here and there you can dab on a bit and it will melt the old finish and then blend in?

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

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LiveEdge

242 posts in 279 days


#4 posted 02-10-2014 12:22 AM

I have not thought of lacquer due to the “shiny factor”. As mentioned, my wife wants to keep the shiny to a minimum.

View tefinn's profile

tefinn

1211 posts in 1095 days


#5 posted 02-10-2014 12:27 AM

The “shiney” factor only depends on what sheen of finish you use. If you use a satin poly or lacquer you won’t have much of anything in the way of “shine”.

-- Tom Finnigan - Measures? We don't need no stinking measures! - Hmm, maybe thats why my project pieces don't fit.

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woodbutcherbynight

1271 posts in 1067 days


#6 posted 02-10-2014 12:30 AM

+1 tefinn, a lot to be said about satin or semigloss even.

If you want hard poly is on the softer side, try lacquer. Just a thought.

-- Live to tell the stories, they sound better that way.

View Clint Searl's profile

Clint Searl

1459 posts in 1020 days


#7 posted 02-10-2014 12:32 AM

Waterborne poly floor finish will offer as much protection as anything else. I like Bona Mega or Varathane.

-- Clint Searl....Ya can no more do what ya don't know how than ya can git back from where ya ain't been

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LiveEdge

242 posts in 279 days


#8 posted 02-10-2014 12:37 AM

Hmm. I didn’t know lacquer comes in a satin. Can I apply it without specialized tools like a sprayer?

As far as the floor poly, I’ve heard water based poly isn’t very

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tefinn

1211 posts in 1095 days


#9 posted 02-10-2014 12:39 AM

+1 on what Clint said. Floor finishes are harder wearing. They have to be.

-- Tom Finnigan - Measures? We don't need no stinking measures! - Hmm, maybe thats why my project pieces don't fit.

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

14246 posts in 996 days


#10 posted 02-10-2014 12:39 AM

I don’t think any normal finish makes it scratch resistant.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View LiveEdge's profile

LiveEdge

242 posts in 279 days


#11 posted 02-10-2014 12:47 AM

I’m not expecting it to turn to steel, but I wondered if I should figure this into the equation. If it doesn’t matter, then I’ll probably go with the poly since I at least have experience with that on other projects I have done.

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LiveEdge

242 posts in 279 days


#12 posted 02-12-2014 05:00 PM

So I put on the first coat of oil-based poly last night. 12 hours later it is still mildly tacky. The can says I could reapply in 3-4 hours (which surprised me, I thought oil based takes a long time to dry). Should I just continue to let it dry until it isn’t tacky before sanding and a new coat? The can said to apply a THIN coat (they actually used all caps), but it’s hard to know what’s thin and what isn’t.

View Clint Searl's profile

Clint Searl

1459 posts in 1020 days


#13 posted 02-12-2014 05:28 PM

Why did you ask for advice if you weren’t gonna take it, anyway?

-- Clint Searl....Ya can no more do what ya don't know how than ya can git back from where ya ain't been

View mrjinx007's profile

mrjinx007

1478 posts in 426 days


#14 posted 02-12-2014 05:48 PM

LiveEdge,
You ploy will dry when it wants too. With the cold weather it takes a lot longer, humidity does the same thing. Home you used Cabot, not minwax. You can change the gloss of both poly and lacquer by sanding. You have to allow the poly to fully dry before putting additional coats or you will have a big mess on your hand. And yes, the more coats the better because you can eliminate future scratches by sanding and buffing. Most everything I have posted here as a project is poly finished and brought to a gloss and mirror shine using poly. If your wife doesn’t like gloss, don’t go past 1500 with your sand paper.

-- earthartandfoods.com

View LiveEdge's profile

LiveEdge

242 posts in 279 days


#15 posted 02-12-2014 06:14 PM

Clint, I definitely took this thread into account. It seemed like there was a varying opinion and I weighed the possible pros of the lacquer against the cons of never having tried to apply it before.

I will wait until it’s fully dry before adding another coat. Thanks for the help.

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