Blanket Chest #14: No Shellac This Time

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Blog entry by HappyHowie posted 01-02-2016 11:50 PM 1251 reads 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 13: Taken Back Part 14 of Blanket Chest series Part 15: Two Coats... that many or more planned for today. »

If this project was for myself I would probably still use Shellac for its finish, clear but not amber. I would follow the suggestions I have received here to rub on the Shellac. I would not attempt to brush it again on this project. What I have learned is that applying Shellac takes a very trained and experienced hand, for a brushed on finish for sure. Watching Chuck Bender brush on Shellac makes it look too easy. There are years of experience in his badger hair brush strokes,

For this project I have decided not to go back with a Shellac finish. I need to practice applying Shellac, either by brush or rubbing, on a different project. A project that I myself will own and use. If I mess up on it then I can live with it better than giving it to someone else to own. I will find a different project to build, a small one to start with, to learn the lessons I need to become a better finisher with the use of Shellac.

Instead of Shellac I am going to finish this blanket chest with General Finishes Arm-R-Seal. I will use a cloth to wipe this finish on. I will build up the finish with several coats until I feel satisfied with it. I had a full quart of semi-gloss in my cabinet. That is what I am wiping on this project.

This shows the look after my first coat of Arm-R-Seal on the lid.

And then the case.

-- --- Happy Howie

5 comments so far

View pintodeluxe's profile


6033 posts in 3417 days

#1 posted 01-03-2016 12:48 AM

Looks great.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3294 days

#2 posted 01-03-2016 12:55 AM

It looks really nice even though you wimped out on the shellac :)

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View htl's profile


4872 posts in 1763 days

#3 posted 01-03-2016 02:31 AM

Not much into the yellow look of Shellac so for me the new improved looks much better.
Just my $.02
Love this project!!!

-- An Index Of My Model making Blogs

View HappyHowie's profile


473 posts in 2549 days

#4 posted 01-04-2016 03:42 AM

Yeah, I did wimped out on the Shellac. I appreciate the candor. I will have a chance to learn what I need by either rubbing or brushing Shellac on a different, personal project.

My Annie prohibited me from continuing with Shellac that might introduce that much yellow again. She stood firm even though I explained that I had two other Shellac cans that both were clear: Zinsser Bulls Eye Seal Coat and Shellac Clear. Its for our granddaughter so Ann does have an invested interest in it.

I had two cans of MinWax Helmsman spar urethane clear gloss in my cabinet. Someone commented that this urethane spray will give my project an amber color; something I was trying to avoid with this project. He was correct, but it is slight. I can live with it. I doubt my Annie will notice it so I think I can sneak it by her. I did want to give this project the added finish protection that spar urethane will give it over spraying lacquer instead which was also a choice I had in my cabinet.

We don’t tell our wives everything that goes on in our shop’s, right? I have a good woman in my home, my life. She allows me to supply my shop with what I need and a lot of times with what I want. I am a lucky man. My Annie is the best thing that happened to me… I don’t lie to her, but I don’t tell her everything… Some of these things is a man’s business…

The lights in my garage woodshop are daylight florescent color rated at 6500K. Therefore, I believe my camera shots give a good color representation of what is in my shop.

Look of the spar urethane I sprayed on my project in the following three photographs. These were recently taken. The time of the photos were about an hour after spraying its first thin coat… I will let it dry overnight before spraying a second coat; the last coat of finish.

The next and last thing I need to do to complete this project will be to install the Rockler lid-stay torsion safety hinges. I weighed the lid. It was about ten pounds.

Rockler's formula indicated two 60 inch pound Lid-Stay Torsion hinges plus another smaller one, but I believe these two hinges will do the job for me. Installing three hinges would break symmetry, wouldn’t it…

-- --- Happy Howie

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3294 days

#5 posted 01-04-2016 02:13 PM

It is a spectacular looking chest!

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

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