LumberJocks

Does shellac's yellowing increase over time?

  • Advertise with us

« back to Finishing forum

Forum topic by HarveyDunn posted 11-26-2020 11:05 PM 489 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View HarveyDunn's profile

HarveyDunn

417 posts in 2707 days


11-26-2020 11:05 PM

Does shellac’s yellowing increase over time? If I’m happy with the way my test pieces look, can I proceed with confidence, or do I need to worry about an increase in yellowness over time? Does the top coat used matter here?


8 replies so far

View Foghorn's profile

Foghorn

929 posts in 362 days


#1 posted 11-27-2020 12:42 AM

It does just like the majority of finishes. We all get old. :)

-- Darrel

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

6746 posts in 3469 days


#2 posted 11-27-2020 11:35 AM

As I understand it, it does not. Shellac is considered “colorfast”, that is it does not change over time. Regardless, the wood itself will change color, and if there is any stain/dye/coloring under the shellac it may also change. So instead of worrying about the shellac, consider what happens to the other parts.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View Wildwood's profile

Wildwood

2935 posts in 3110 days


#3 posted 11-27-2020 12:15 PM

Not an easy question to answer because is it the shellac or wood darkening with age? Shellac comes in different colors, ranging from a light blonde (clear), to variations of amber, orange, red, and even dark brown.

Is this a good rule of thumb: just always stick with dewaxed shellac, because the waxy substance in regular shellac can actually reduce it’s durability as a protective finish.

Different colors differ and will have an effect on the final outcome of the finish. You’ll want to stick to a light blonde shellac if you don’t want much color change. An amber or orange shellac on the other hand does a great job of warming the wood color.

Think benefits like ease of application & repair, beauty, and protection make shellac a great choice for fine furniture, many small crafts, and children’s toys.

https://www.finewoodworking.com/forum/shellac-yellowing

https://www.woodworkdetails.com/knowledge/finishing.shellac

-- Bill

View Axis39's profile

Axis39

405 posts in 573 days


#4 posted 11-27-2020 03:43 PM

I’ve been using shellac a long time, and have never had it get noticeably darker on me.

It might after longer than 35 or 40 years, but that’s as much experience as I have with it.

As Fred mentions above, I have had the wood underneath get darker, though.

-- John F. SoCal transplant, chewer uppper of good wood

View HarveyDunn's profile

HarveyDunn

417 posts in 2707 days


#5 posted 11-27-2020 04:13 PM

Thanks all.

Is there a topcoat that would inhibit the wood getting darker, without looking plastic-y?

View SMP's profile

SMP

3203 posts in 881 days


#6 posted 11-27-2020 04:25 PM



Thanks all.

Is there a topcoat that would inhibit the wood getting darker, without looking plastic-y?

- HarveyDunn

Different woods get darker for different reasons so not easy to answer. What wood are you talking about here?

View HarveyDunn's profile

HarveyDunn

417 posts in 2707 days


#7 posted 11-27-2020 04:28 PM

Poplar & sugar pine.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

6746 posts in 3469 days


#8 posted 11-27-2020 04:45 PM



Thanks all.

Is there a topcoat that would inhibit the wood getting darker, without looking plastic-y?

- HarveyDunn

No, but some might slow it down…depending on a very long list of variables. That goes for the ones that look platic’y as well as those that don’t.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com