Seal Coat shellac under varnish on exterior oak door?

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Blog entry by royroy posted 09-05-2019 01:16 AM 523 reads 0 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hi all,
I’m about ready to seal, stain and top coat a new, white oak, storm door in Cincinnati. So I’m wondering about using Zinsser’s Seal Coat before the stain goes on and then putting a few coats of Epifane’s varnish to finish it all off. The Seal Coat can says “interior” but with three coats or more of the Epifanes varnish won’t that protect the Seal Coat? I like the warm tone the 1:1 Seal Coat provided on the test pieces.
I sent a email to Epifanes’s but they never responded. I’m guessing they don’t like to comment on another companies products.
Best regards,

2 comments so far

View lightweightladylefty's profile


3375 posts in 4193 days

#1 posted 09-05-2019 04:57 AM

Maybe try contacting Zinsser. List for them the ingredients in the Epifane‚Äôs varnish to ask about compatibility for exterior use. If Epifane’s guarantees their finish for a certain period of time, it would probably be void if you use another company’s product under it.

Or . . . try contacting Epifane by phone: Phone: 207.354.0804 Toll Free: 800.269.0961 Maybe you can get someone to respond to your inquiry.

Or . . . check out Bob Flexner's blog. He knows a lot about finishing and might give you an unbiased answer.

Best wishes,

-- Jesus is the ONLY reason for ANY season.

View pintodeluxe's profile (online now)


5975 posts in 3294 days

#2 posted 09-05-2019 04:31 PM

I wouldn’t hesitate to use shellac as a pre-stain conditioner on an exterior door. In fact I had to to that on exterior mahogany trim, so it would stain to match a white oak door.

I wouldn’t use the shellac unless you have a specific reason for it (like a pre-stain conditioner).

The topcoat I used on the door project was Deft polyurethane. That was 7 years and 4 days ago, and it still looks like new.

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

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