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  • Finish on Intarsia

    Been reading up on Intarsia and I notice that Judy Gale Roberts talked about using Gel finish. I may have used this over the years, but really don't remember. She said she finishes each piece "before" she glues it to the backing, and then once done, she will spray the last coat on the finished piece...in her case a matte finish.

    I was wondering what steps you folks use in the finish process.
    Hawaiilad
    Larry

  • #2
    I assemble it all and then apply a spray on finish.
    Hegner Polymax- 3,Hegner Multimax-3,
    "No PHD, just a DD 214"

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    • #3
      Jim, do you find you have a build up on the lower parts of the pieces? I know, just like my wife (the painter) says, spray light coats. Do you sand between coats? And if you do, I would think you would have to be very careful when sanding. What spray do you use?
      Hawaiilad
      Larry

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      • #4
        I use an acrylic spray I get at walmart. (Triple thick glaze). I sand all the pieces well before assembly and spray two coats without sanding. I also spray the back side. I use 1/8" Masonite backing usually.
        Hegner Polymax- 3,Hegner Multimax-3,
        "No PHD, just a DD 214"

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        • #5
          I do much the same as Judy Gale. I put 4 coats ofOld Masters Gel poly on each piece prior to assembly, buffing between each coat with a 320 grit sanding mop. I will very rarely use Deft semi-gloss spray lacquer if the piece has a zillion very small pieces and it's easier to spray it rather than do each tiny piece one at a time. Call it laziness. I much prefer the appearance of the finish when I use the wipe-on gel. I also like the idea that there is no buildup of finish between the pieces.

          Jan

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          • #6
            Thanks Jim and Jan....I was wondering about the build up. Is Old Masters the name brand of the Gel you use Jan? I so use the Deft gloss spray on the band saw boxes and other items.
            Hawaiilad
            Larry

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            • #7
              Old Masters Clear Poly Gel Satin. I also have the Old Masters White Stain gel in satin finish. It does a fine job of keeping white woods white. I get it from Judy Gale because I have trouble finding it locally.

              Jan
              Last edited by Jan; 03-26-2012, 10:56 AM.

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              • #8
                Perhaps that is why I have not heard of it....allot of items are not found here in the Islands. I will check to see if anyone sells it here.
                Hawaiilad
                Larry

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                • #9
                  That Old Masters has to be shipped by ground too Larry, so it may take awhile to get to you. I use Jim's method too and have for 10 years or more. I use Watco lacquer in semi gloss. I like to glue up the entire project and then spray it, outside of course. The 1st thin coat will raise the grain on some woods. I usually feel the project after the 1st coat and see if it's fuzzy. If it is lightly sand with some 220 and then 2 more light coats of lacquer. The beauty of lacquer is the fast drying time. The spray will get into most all the area's. If not you can touch them up with a Q'Tip and some clear Watco Oil.

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                  • #10
                    Hi Larry - unlike most of the folks on this forum I don't have access to most of the finishes already mentioned so I have to use what I can find locally. In the past I have used a satin finish two component polyurethane which I brush on. If I want the colours of the wood or stains to pop a little more I pretreat the parts with tung oil or BLO and cure well before applying the finish. More recently I have used Miniwax water based PolyAcrylic since this has now come into my stores. It seems to work well except for a tendency to froth a little when brushing it on.

                    For ease of use I would imagine from what I have read that a wipe on gel is the the way to go.

                    Whatever finish you use I suggest you choose a semi matte look.

                    I tend to finish most of my projects before glueing mainly because when applying multiple coats its very difficult to cut back with fine sandpaper an assembled piece, particularly if its fairly intricate and has lots of relief, prior to applying a final coat. Very often the first coat will raise the grain of natural woods, particularly if not adequately sanded or dusted off, which means that fine sanding is usually necessary before applying subsequent coats.
                    Last edited by jim_mex; 03-26-2012, 03:42 AM.
                    Jim in Mexico

                    Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.
                    - Albert Einstein

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                    • #11
                      I also use a wipe on Gel varnish. I do not like a glossy finish on intarsia. I think it takes away from the beauty of the wood. As far as application, it depends on my project sometimes I coat the pieces before assembly but most times it is after. I use compressed air to blow out the crevices. I still have some Bartley's gel varnish, I don't think it is made anymore.
                      Rolf
                      RBI G4 26 Hawk, EX 16 with Pegas clamps, Nova 1624 DVR XP
                      Philosophy "I don't know that I can't, therefore I can"
                      Proud Member of the Long Island Woodworkers Club
                      And the Long Island Scrollsaw Association

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                      • #12
                        I use Bartley's SATIN gel varnish. I prefer to glue the pieces together then finish. 2 coats is usually enough, 3 is better.
                        Janette
                        www.square-designs.com

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                        • #13
                          I have used the gel and I like the way it looks. I also like to use Danish oil followed with some deft spray semigloss. I like the look of the gel better but I have had several people say the prefer the slightly glossy look. So for me I do both. When I use the gel it is after glue up and I too use compressed air to blow it out of the cracks. The gel is very easy to use and no need to sand between coats, just keep wiping it on and let it dry.

                          Hey I am coming across the big water on Wed. will be in Honolulu 1 day then off to Kauai for 5. All packed up and very excited.
                          Jerry
                          Life's funny if you laugh at it!

                          http://dedijerry.blogspot.com/
                          http://www.etsy.com/shop/DediWoodworks

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