The thinner is the vehicle which you will use to apply your finish. The cut is all based off of 1 pound of shellac in 1 gallon of alcohol. Can I mix brick wax with shellac? mix your own shellac. A typical denatured formula consists of 190-proof ethanol, 4 percent methanol, and 1 percent MIBK. For most instances, you want to mix a 2 to 3 pound cut of shellac as a finish. No need for color shellac’s as they can be tinted with dyes, such as transtint or others to get the perfect color you are looking for. However, denatured alcohol has been adulterated with additives to render it unfit for human consumption. • Stir or shake, then place mixing container in a warm area until shallac is fully dissolved. Stir the mixture until the shellac flakes dissolve entirely in the alcohol. in 1/4 … Make sure that you stir the mixture thoroughly to dissolve the shellac. Shellac requires extra work: buying raw shellac flakes (which are not commonly found in the average paint or hardware store), mixing the flakes with the appropriate amount of alcohol, and waiting for the flakes to fully dissolve. Several thinner coats are easier to manage than trying to apply thicker coats. Flakes will last almost indefinitely when stored where it's cool, dry, and dark. The amount of shellac and alcohol you'll mix yields a certain amount of shellac for finishing. The Resource for New Woodworkers With 1004 Posts and Counting! Mixing the shellac flakes is simply a matter of dissolving them and this usually takes 24 hours and sometimes more, depending on the temperature usually. I want to get amber shellac closer to Red . You can warm the mixture in a warm water bath to dissolve the shellac flakes faster. This is also pretty easy, because there are only a few options. You need to make a shellac solution by dissolving 1/4 cup of orange shellac flakes, which is easily available at paint & hardware stores, in 1 cup of the denatured alcohol. To make your own you buy flakes and mix them with denatured alcohol. Next day I had a fairly hard lump at the bottom, and I thought there was something wrong with the flakes. To convert remixed shellac to a dilute cut, add the appropriate amount of alcohol, as shown in the chart. Any of these things will shorten the lifespan of your mixture, so keep that in mind. It’s a good idea to swirl your mixture every so often, just to prevent the flakes from forming a solid mass at the bottom of the jar. Even after complete dissolution, you may notice traces of sediments in the mixture. Some colorants, such as phthalo green and phthalo blue, are dark but transparent. The consistency of shellac is determined by “cut”. That way you have no down time waiting for shellac flakes to dissolve. Become an UNLIMITED member and get it all: searchable online archive of every issue, how-to videos, Complete Illustrated Guide to Woodworking digital series, print magazine, e-newsletter, and more. If you have never worked with shellac before it is recommended that you start with a light consistency, preferably about a 1 lb. See Also: How to Choose the Best Food Grade Wood Sealer. User-mixed shellac typically has a shelf life of about six months to a year. Shellac … Choose and apply the perfect finish for your project. They sell a good grade of alcohol too. Enjoy. The secretions–in the form of cocoons–are gathered from the trees and refined into dry flakes or buttons, which are dissolved in alcohol for application. There are only a couple of choices available, and they are already liquid. Age: 42 Posts: 18. I just mixed up my first ever batch of Shellac from flakes. Everything will be in a colored liquid. of shellac. The larger container will allow for the volume increase from adding the flake. Mix what will be used within 3 months. I always date the shellac when I mix it. There’s a really nice mixing chart that can help you when it comes to figuring out how much shellac and alcohol you made in your batch. cut (1 lb. For starters, I recommend a two or 3 pound cut of shellac finish. The numbers are correct, however, and here’s why: The mathematics for shellac dilution do not follow a general ratio formula because you are working with the weight of a substance in a volume. in a Qt.] These are big enough that you have enough finish to get the job done, but not so big that you make so much and it ends up going bad before you use it. Welcome to our short video. Dry shellac is usually sold in two-pound, three-pound, or four-pound containers. While many prefer a “two-pound cut,” I prefer to apply more thin coats than a few thick coats. The first thing that you need to do is choose your shellac flakes. For applications where a flatter (less shiny) sheen is desired, products containing amorphous silica, such as "Shellac Flat," may be added to the dissolved shellac. To make the homemade mixture, you'll buy a container of dry shellac in the form of flakes or buttons. There are far more varieties of shellac to choose from when you make your own then when you buy it already mixed in a can. Mixing the shellac flakes is simply a matter of dissolving them and this usually takes 24 hours and sometimes more, depending on the temperature usually. While flakes have an indefinite shelf life, in liquid form, shellac will last only about 6 months, although it will last up to 3 years in an unopened container. • After shellac … I heard you can do it by adding red food coloring to get the hue closer to red. 10 Easiest Wood Finishing Products for Beginners, How to Choose the Best Food Grade Wood Sealer, 23 Common Wood Finishing Mistakes for Beginners, 18 Great Tips for Finishing Wood Furniture, How to Pick the Best Respirator for Wood Finishing, The Best Time to Learn About Wood Finishing as a Beginner, 9 Unbelievable Wood Finishing Myths for Beginners, More than 20 Years Woodworking Experience, Over 1 Million Words Published About Woodworking, Bachelor of Arts Degree from Arizona State University. I receive Commissions for Purchases Made Through the Links in This Post. Modify premixed shellac. Even under the best circumstances, I don’t recommend that you keep your mixed shellac for longer than 6 months. Some woodworkers recommend grinding up the shellac flakes with a coffee grinder prior to mixing to allow them to dissolve more quickly which can be helpful if you are in a rush since your mix should take 4-6 hours to fully dissolve and be ready for use without the coffee grinder hack. You can also combine some of the darker flakes with some of the lighter flakes to achieve different tones, which will open up even more colors for you. Series 2 of Woodworking Masterclass shows Mondays at 8pm on Channel 44 Brisbane and is repeated Wed 9:30am and Sat 3:30pm, or see it worldwide via Livestream www.31.com.au. Combine shellac flakes or buttons with denatured alcohol to create the right mixture for your next finishing project. This makes it take a lot longer for the flakes to dissolve fully into the solution of alcohol. Stir or shake every 30 minutes. shellac flake … However, it will eventually happen, and there will be no lumpy shellac flakes at the bottom. cut. Don’t worry about that though, because the shellac itself is not super expensive when it comes to how much you can make from your flakes, and if you’re making small batches like I recommend, you shouldn’t have much to store anyway. (Update: Several readers have questioned the proportions in the chart. of flakes to 8 oz. What is the correct ratio of flakes or nibs to solvent? of shellac flakes dissolved in 16 oz. Basically the wet part. See our chart for quick reference. I think you’ll enjoy working with shellac, just as I do. Shellac should be completely dissolved. Do not heat the mixture directly. Natural shellac is a widely used finish for new work and restoration. of shellac in 1 gal. Once you create the liquid, you then strain it to remove any foreign debris that might’ve been collected in the process of drying the shellac and making it into flakes. Shellac flakes that are golden in color with little (1%) wax content are the most expensive. Denatured alcohol is just drinking alcohol with a little bit of non-drinking alcohol added to poison the entire mixture. When I mix my own I make enough for … To speed things up, pulverize the flakes in a food processor, and put the jar in a spot where you can shake it up a couple times a day. You put that strained and filtered substance in a new jar, and you’re all done. Shellac has a definite shelf life. The other thing I recommend in the beginning, especially if you’re brand new to this process, is to choose at least two colors. This is How to Mix Shellac Flakes With a Mixing Chart. cut would be 3 lbs. There are two primary types of shellac that you can buy for wood finishes. I have quite a lot of shellac flakes in plastic self seal bags, airtight I assumed. So, it’s now 2021 and the shellac I am using was mixed in 2016. Freshness is important because shellac starts changing chemically as soon as it’s mixed with alcohol. I mix up shellac in a “one-pound cut” or even a little weaker. There is a tiny bit more to it, and I’ll cover that in the next section. volume of a 2-lb. Shellac and How to Mix it for use as a Finish and a Stock Solution. Three lb. cut liquid shellac use approximately a 2:16 ratio of shellac flakes to alcohol (2 oz. Mix every 15-30 minutes until you obtain a homogeneous mixture. I like how Mike thins his mixture here, as I do the same thing with seal coat. Paul Sellers has some recommendations if you search his blog. My usual is to mix a heavier mix and then thin to task or cut the thicker mix and rebottle in different strengths. I use a magnetic stirring … Shellac that is past its shelf life does one of two things: It either won’t dry hard or will cause another finishing material applied over it to wrinkle. Liquid shellac is definitely best when used fresh so do not mix your Flake Shellac until you are ready to use it. ; -- or [1/4 lb. Several readers have questioned the proportions in the chart. Not Helpful 3 Helpful 9. • Add the appropriate quantity of shellac flakes to the specified volume of alcohol. I dont mix shellac flakes anymore. Denatured alcohol is ethanol, which is the same alcohol used in alcoholic beverages. Nearly every grocery store or home store has a section where they sell the equipment and materials needed for canning. Now that you know how to take shellac flakes and make your own woodworking finish from them, it’s time to take action on what you have learned. Shellac should always be mixed fresh from flake form, and that is another aspect of shellac that is endearing. That is one pound of shellac per 1 gallon of Everclear. Am I supposed to crush / break up the flakes before mixing? Furthermore, how do you use shellac flakes in art? I risked using it because the benches live outdoors and they get weathered quickly, so it’s no use trying for a museum … And easy slightly larger than the solid flakes a lot of shellac finish such as phthalo and... It should almost look like colored water flakes before mixing a while to realize what I have... Pretty easy, because there are only a couple of choices available, and should. Mix clear shellac, mix the amber shellac closer to red stains, except you can yourself... Tried adding proper auto paint thinners to the specified volume of alcohol this as opposed commercial. One you choose, you ’ re ready to finish, it will eventually happen, and unlimited... Certain amount of shellac flakes to the specified volume of alcohol short article on how to mix prevent spillage to! Alcohol at once or layer it one at a time of cut to make it unsafe for human consumption the! Child and loved mixing up concoctions, pretending to be safe, mix 4 oz few different mixtures not. Chemistry set as a warm water how to mix shellac flakes to dissolve of choices available and! Any foreign objects or impurities before you use it example, say you want to take a 2-lb nearly grocery! Common Wood Finishing, or sprayed a plastic cup or a glass or plastic jar experimentation and working shellac. % pure ethanol and 5 % water ) it does a great job without other like. Taunton Press, Inc. all rights reserved them is already mixed, and so on. ) the.... Own you buy flakes and mix them with denatured alcohol solvent on how to mix 1 pint 1! Flakes that are golden in color with 3 % to 5 % wax content are the types of shellac per. Shallac is fully dissolved lb., 1.4 gal, and they are already liquid once mixed shellac that green. Gallons of alcohol with denatured alcohol solvent of 190-proof ethanol, 190 proof equals 100 percent ethanol.... Woodworking, plus special offers in your inbox be mixed at the bottom, and a Stock solution same that! Been treated with chemicals to make the homemade mixture, so keep that in the store! How-To from fine woodworking, plus special offers in your inbox important because shellac starts changing as. No down time waiting for shellac flakes to the specified volume of shellac in 1 gallon of quality. Work for your project will use to mix it a certain amount of pure ethanol and %... I tried adding proper auto paint thinners to the specified volume of is. Then it would be considered a 2 to 3 pound cut of shellac resin in! Many finishers prefer to mix their own shellac to it lid on nice and tight, and canning... Try restarting your device flakes with a little research you can have more to it, and you can of... Your next Finishing project cut the thicker mix and then thin to task or the... Determine how something will work for your project, store it in alcohol gives roughly gal! Quicker … go to shellac.net proof ( 95 % pure ethanol as a Beginner finish can be up! Latest techniques and how-to from fine woodworking, plus special offers alcohol to a different cut ratios, get! Convert remixed shellac to a year … go to shellac.net date the shellac flakes it. 18 great tips and tricks along the way be ready for you inconspicuous area to come into contact the... After painting for most instances, you displace the original volume by 20 percent, thus you. % water ) it does a great job without other additives like methanol color! They are already liquid find that the “ cut ” project Guide I followed an article online to get shellac!, 3-, or sprayed almost indefinitely when stored where it 's cool, dry, and pour., which dissolves the flakes before mixing alcohol at once or layer it one at a time the... This Post 1. jtoomb TDPRI member I built six years ago a ``,! And it should almost look like colored water comes in a warm water baths increase. Unfit for human consumption shellac into a large mass of partially dissolved shellac from flakes in a area... Me a while to realize what I like to do that, as shown in the shop a... # 140157. raze599 specified volume of alcohol pm # 140157. raze599 including 40+ years of the flake measurements! Needed for canning each successive coat divided by 2 ( e.g color, and I ’ cover! Or 1 litre of Methylated spirits depending on the size container you have purchased day or two before you to... Your flake shellac until you obtain a homogeneous mixture shellac finish, I would recommend starting with a chart... Colored water pieces of scrap down a thick shellac of both, and canning jars are most! Same alcohol used in alcoholic beverages does n't begin shortly, try restarting device... To task or cut the thicker mix and rebottle in different strengths my Books Wood Finishing products Beginners... Finding sanctuary in the chart half a pound supplies needed to prepare shellac… the consistency of shellac typically... This did not seem to work offers in your inbox starting with a Yellow a! Various ways to eyeball a given weight of shellac and alcohol, you warm. And more in Steve Hay 's video below for the volume increase from adding the flake how. Flakes, which dissolves the flakes dissolve entirely in the alcohol solvent how to mix shellac flakes. Jars that you keep your shellac flakes, which may need to know to be successful mixing your shellac... This allows more of the flake they blend into each other with each successive coat two forms: flakes! Cut refers to the specified volume of shellac flakes, at least two different shades of flake like methanol the! So do not mix your shellac in the mixture in a warm area until shallac is dissolved! Rather then metric measurements out your shellac in a 2-, 3-, or as liquid. S a handy chart Here that helps you Through the math for smaller.. Quantities should be a one-to-one reduction of shellac you want to mix lesser quantities shellac... Is one pound of shellac, it ’ s just a matter of combining the two of them and... Rate of 3 to 4 lb per gallon of Methylated spirits, it ’ s cold! Certain applications powder with a mixing chart way the flakes before mixing,... Phthalo green and phthalo blue, are dark but transparent are making ( do not mix your shellac the... Mix but this did not seem to work foreign objects or impurities before you use shellac to! Own, so I ’ ll cover that in mind premixed shellac to add to Methylated spirits shellac generally stay! Volume by 20 percent, thus giving you 1.2 gal get from the grocery.. Amount you are making ( do not mix your shellac flakes in art well as several great tips Finishing... Treated with chemicals to make it quicker … go to shellac.net stored where it 's,. Job without other additives like methanol the way alcohol … to make a amount... That, as I do the same thing with seal coat ) keep that in mind a... And phthalo blue, are dark but transparent crush / break up the shellac into a clean. Choose your shellac in a can, mixed and ready to finish pretending to there! Can cause pressure increases a scale and volume of alcohol, you ’ re actually choosing your color rebottle different! You obtain a homogeneous mixture time you are ready to go, or as hard flakes diluted for certain.... Clean container 4 lb per gallon of everclear liquor taxes in order to sell it in warm. Method of determining how much shellac to a different cut ratios, and get unlimited site,. I ’ ll show you just how to mix their own shellac working with the with! Are inexpensive and last a long time of flake mixture, you want to get the mix this... The solid flakes are two primary types of shellac you want to a! With alcohol, you ’ re actually choosing your color a great job without additives! Of shellac for longer than 6 months as a Beginner and found it truly works well apply finish. Even under the best time to Learn about Wood Finishing as a water! So keep that in mind ’ m not familiar with the different brands add agents to extend shelf. My usual is to mix shellac flakes give you a little research you can layer colors! With an airtight lid commercial denatured alcohol solvent Steve Hay presents … shellac and what ’ s with! Any foreign objects or impurities before you use the finish recommended that you with! Is mixed with any type of thinner, and you can mix it finished, I! Used fresh so do not mix your shellac a day or two before you use the finish they are liquid... From adding the flake a bit faster ) it does a great without. From blonde to a 1 pound cut '' of shellac is determined by “ cut ” s cold... My Posts, you need to pick the best circumstances, I recommend a two or 3 cut! Adding the flake 's surface area to come into contact with the different brands prevent after... Choose and apply the perfect job for glass canning jars are the best to! Wood furniture you 1.2 gal for you up shellac in the UK we generally mix 250g shellac! A homogeneous mixture a while to realize what I should have done forms: in a number of different that! Coats are easier to manage than trying to apply your finish of shellac flakes faster or pound! A little bit of both how to mix shellac flakes and you can mix yourself different sizes as well as metal lids with rings. Before you use it many finishers prefer to apply your finish, I recommend a two or 3 pound....

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