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Question about Mineral Spirits

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  • Question about Mineral Spirits

    Hi Folks,
    I need some information about mineral spirits. Is it the same as turpentine? Does it have a harsh smell like turpentine, or is it a bit milder. I never used mineral spirits but I understand from posts here that it is very good for removing glue residue. Unfortunately I have an alergy to some of these chemical products, like turpentine, which I have used, but rarely, it irritates my throat so bad. Is mineral spirits readily available, say at the big orange store, or CTC.
    Any information here would be greatly appreciated

  • #2
    In USA paint thinner is called mineral spirits or just paint thinner.
    In Canada Mineral Spirits and paint thinner and varsol are basically the same thing.
    Reduced odor varsol or mineral spirits or paint thinner is available at a premium price so I just use the ordinary one with adequate ventilation.
    All paint stores and CTC and hardware stores etc carry these products.
    Turpentine on the other hand is the same thing in both USA and Canada but is an entirely different product and is quite expensive and has a stronger odor than any of the above and is generally used in speciallized circumstances.
    Turpentine is not at all a requirement for removing glue residue . The others will work just fine.
    Last edited by William Young (SE BC); 07-29-2006, 11:22 PM.

    The task ahead of us is never as great as the power behind us

    Delta P-20 Scroll Saw, 14" x 43" Craftex Wood Lathe and Jet 10" Mini Lathe .


    • #3

      - Mineral Spirits is a product that may be bad for your health, since you state you have a problem with other products with high Volatile Organic Compounds evaporation emissions (AKA petroleum based fumes.)

      - Mineral Spirits, as WY pointed out, is labeled as Paint Thinner in the BORG(big orange retail giant) stores. Usually in gallon or quart cans.

      - California, and some places on the East Coast, there is a real problem with air quality. Mineral spirits, some varnishes, and other wood finishes with high VOC evaporations (traditional lacquer like Deft) are (were) being looked at as bad for the environment. A few years ago I thought they were going to try to bad the products from the store shelfs in these specific areas.

      - I would recommend, for the sake of your allergy, you first try rubbing alcohol, which I think is just isopropyl alcohol. Isopropyl alcohol will not work as fast, or as well as mineral spirits. Isopropyl alcohol is also petroleum based, but I suspect fewer have an allergy to it than paint thinner.



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