Re: epifanes

Posted by terry on Dec 9, 2004

On this varnish issue, I know I'm gonna get flamed for saying this, but I don't use the thinners specified by the manufacturers for thinning their varnishes. I use plain old lacquer thinner. I've used it with most brands of varnish over the years. I say "most brands' because, being cheaper than a pack rat, I tend to buy the varnish that's on sale (love them 2 for 1 sales!). Anyhow, it seems to work fine in minimizing runs and sags and problems with high humidity.

I have noticed Epifanes to be darker, but I've also noticed that most varnishes will darken quickly if you leave them out in the sun for a few weeks (which also leads to a nice, hard cure.

Now, in my prior life as an antique dealer, I learned the hard way that using colored varnishes can be tricky in terms of streaking and uneven color if you have to sand down a mistake. As advised above, best try on a test patch that's out of sight.

Amazing, using the gas to preserve the varnish. I'm too lazy for that. I just reseal and store it upside down (reminding my self to invert the can again prior to reopening). If the varnish is older and stiffening in the can, I thin it before I reseal it. Seems to work for cans I've misplaced and rediscovered a year or two later, but not for the ones I find more than three or so years later (disorganized, I've been called).

Anyhow, the modern varnishes seem to have a much better shelf life than the ones I used as a boy in the 50's (that's 1950's, smart guys, not 1850's). My Dad would always go on a late-season varnishing binge to use all the cans bought the prior spring. Our boats always had the best britework during the September races.

And yes, Mac, I did notice your pun. Must be getting REAL cold for the brain up there, eh?


In Response to: Re: epifanes by Mac on Dec 9, 2004