Reply by CaptainKlutz

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Posted on Is there a spray alternative to Arm R Seal for large projects?

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1892 posts in 2004 days

#1 posted 08-23-2019 04:41 PM

Have sprayed Arm-R-Seal a couple of times.
With large enough tip on HVLP, can spray it straight from can. But it works better thinned by 10-20%. Use paint thinner in summer, and fast solvent like naptha in winter.
It is not made for spray application, and it is very easy to create runs on vertical surfaces.
There are better options for spray application. Lately most types can be found in both solvent system, or water based. Such as:
- Pre-cat lacquer
- Catalyzed Lacquer
- 2K Polyurethane
- Catalyzed Conversion Varnish

To be blunt, there are so many choices in spray coatings for wood, it will make your head spin. Everyone has a favorite, which is usually it’s the one with least number of bad habits, or least objectionable to use; the one they can get most easily/cheap when needed.

Suggest the best way to pick one is via working with a local industrial coatings supplier.
[Yes, skip big box stores, Woodcraft, and Rockler – go to an expert finish supplier to professionals]
Use google maps and look for a Sherwin Williams, Mohawk, Sikkens, PPG, Lor-Chem, M.L. Campbell or Chemcraft; wood finishing products distributor. Go talk to the folks at your local finishing store and they will help you pick a product that works for your capabilities and project needs.
If you are one of those buys only on internet; Target Coatings has a loyal following and many different WB spray products as well.

PS – for a table top, I like to use a KCMA rated table top finish. Getting best table top durability has always been a challenge for water based coatings. The best are generally catalyzed (2 part) solvent based polyurethane systems. In the last couple years, mfg have finally released some WB coatings that are almost as durable as solvent based system. These are nice as they reduce the burden for full body suit PPE when spraying nasty chemicals. If you are making tables for restaurant, probably still want solvent system; but for home table – water based chemistry will be lot less of hassle.

As always,
YMMV and
Best Luck.

-- I'm an engineer not a woodworker, but I can randomly find useful tools and furniture inside a pile of lumber!

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