wood floor finish
Whats the +’s and -‘s of oil based versus water based finish for wood floors?
Is one “better” than the other?
What I have heard is that these days Oil and water are pretty much equal when it comes to durability and life but that the oil base allows the wood to naturally darken over time whereas the water base doesn’t and you have to go tinted.
Any input would be appreciated.
“Good looking people turn me off. Myself included.”
The wood will darken with water base, maybe slower but it will darken.
Seeing your location some one else may have a thought about the humidity
when you apply.
Oil Oil Oil ......Got a friend whose a chemist for S W ........Claims water base stuff is the best.......I say from doing the work that oil base products are the best.. They flow better , adhere better , wear better and just feel more natural to work with. I might be old school but I get paid to use the stuff, he gets paid to play with it.
"Man is a tool-using animal...Without tools he is nothing,with tools he is all."~Robert Browning~
Edited 6/1/2009 9:53 pm ET by mjcwoodworks
Yes oil is good,I just can`t take the fumes any more.Friend has tung oil on his fir floor and it looks just fine.Easy to care for also.
Check out Fabulon products. I think they are great.
For beauty, ease of application, durability and ease of repair you will be hard pressed to find any thing better than old fashioned safe as candy shellac.
I have a 150 pound newfundland who absolutely refuses to clip his claws..years later the floor is still undamaged.. however if his claw marks should ever show up I can either wipe them away or apply another coat on.. new shellac melts old shellac even 100 years later so it simply gets a fresh coat.
I had a air conditioner leak onto my floor and sometime in the middle of the night I stepped into the giant puddle of water (over 7 feet across) I wiped it up using the towel my daughter had tossed on the floor and expected to see it white in the morning..
In the morning the only differance was that part of the floor was dust free.
Ask an old floor finisher how hard it is to sand a shellac floor.. they all complain and groan because they don't know the trick their grandfathers did.. which is you don't ever need to resand shellac.. all you do is wipe it up using denatured alcohol.
I'll bet you can't eat any of the floor finishes you looked at.. nor would you feed them to a baby..
shellac? It's on candy and pills that we've been taking for all of our lives..
shellac dries really fast!
I can walk on the floor 15 minutes after I apply the first coat. Two hours after you start the floor has it's final coat and if you wait an hour the floor can take furniture.
Smell? Well when it goes down it smells like a docters office.. However within a few minutes that smell goes away and you are left with a soft sweet smell that is also gone within the hour.
Cost? I can do about 500 sq.ft. for about $50.00
If you ask I'll type out some instructions on how to doo a really great floor using shellac.
Ok I`am asking,how to do a really great floor using shellac.Thanx Fun is Good
OK if you want a light colored wood go to the big box store of your choice and buy a gallon of Zinssler's ultra blond Bullseye. (get amber if you want darker or add garnet flakes to it if you really want it dark)
At the same time buy 2 gallons of denatured alcohol and something to apply it with.. I like the lambs wool applicators with the long stick so I don't have to bend over on my old knees like I will with a brush. You also should pick up one of those 3M saNDING SPONGES the 220 ones..
I assume the sanding is done.. I sand all the way to 220 but some stop before that.. I like really smooth glossy floors but if you stop before that you get a softer more semigloss look.
Now comes the fun..
Mix the two gallons of denatured alcohol with the shellac. Don't use paint thinner or anything other than denatured alcohol. 30 seconds of stirring is usually enough.
Shellac is unlike any other paint in that you want to mop it on really quickly (because it dries so fast) and never go back over anything. Neat is a mistake! Fast is way more important than neat! Just flood it on!
That's important! if you miss something just get it the next coat.
Let this coat dry about 15 minutes or so (a little longer if it's a damp day)
Then get on your hands and kness (sorry) and feel the floor.. notice the little nubs that stick up? that's what you are removing now. Just a lite pass or two with the sanding sponge and the floor will be smooth. I spend an average of a second to a second and a half per square foot. so 500 sq.ft will take you so from 8 minutes to 12 minutes is all the time you'll need to spend sanding..
Please don't try to sand any mistakes or goofs. The next coat will melt the first coat and all your work will be wasted. That's what's so cool about shellac.. If it's not smooth apply another coat and just in the areas that are rough. That's also why touch ups are so simple!
once you've gotten all the nubs apply the second coat just as fast as the first. this coat will take twice as long to dry.. so about 1/2 hour..
When dry check one more time to see if you missed any nubs with your sanding and if so just sand that area. No need to resand everything.
This coat will take about an hour to dry. and you should be done.. If you are really fussy you can french polish it but expect that will take about forever!
You might want an extra coat or so but thicker isn't better.. You are far more likely to have problems with alligatoring and such once you get over about 4 coats..
The real beauty of shellac is the beautiful depth without the plastic look of most floor finishes.. the finest violins and antiques all use shellac which is why there is a myth of fragility with shellac but that's not the case.. Shellac is really tough and durable.. oh you can ruin it sure but it's so easy to repair you might want to do it just to show off to your party guests..
Couple of points.. don't use cleaners with ammonia on shellac. (takes off the finish) if you spill try to wipe it up reasonably soon. water won't hurt it if it's only left on for a few hours but if it's left on over night shellac will turn white.. then you remove the white part with denatured alcohol and reapply your three coats.. Invisable repair and no sanding..
Let the lambs wool applicator dry out.. don't botther cleaning it.. next time you want to apply shellac soak it in the denatured alcohol for about 15 minutes or so and that crusty ol thing will spring right back to life! It's a miracle!
Several months ago frenchy sent me these very instructions. I was a skeptic. I followed his advice - instructions - to the letter. IT WORKS! Trust him. My floor looks great and I am a novice. It is so easy to repair. One piece of advice I did not take and feel good about not doing it - I did not drink the shellac. I know you can but I prefer Bud Lite.I did not do the French thing either. Not real appreciative of the French since they refused my Dad a motel room at the anniversary of D-Day and he was there at Omaha Beech. But I do not want to turn this into a political rambling.Trust Frenchy. He rocks.Mike
Thank you for your kind words.. since I am of German decent (only my name is French) and speak only English I don't have any clout to correct things for your father at Normandy.. Please don't feel bad, the French even forgot to invite the Queen to their 65th anniversary until it was pointed out how many Limey's died trying to take France back for the frogs.. So at the last minute Prince Charles was shoehorned in.. (wonder if he had to share a B&B with someone?)
By the way thank your father for me will you? I think the D day invasions was the very peak of American Glory.. My father also served in Europe during WW2, however he fought along the French Rivera compared to your dad slogging out through the hedge rows and in the battles through Belgium etc.. While my dad spent most of his time behind the German lines in the scouts. At least The French along the Cote De Zor treated him great once he came back behind American lines.
So when dad went back for the 25th anniversary he had to go to Monte Carlo.. Thecost of a room there made him feel like he was paying the entire cost of the french fighting in WW2 <grin>
I believe that the two-component waterbornes, as sold by the commercial jobbers and installed by the bigger flooring outfits, outperform the solvent-borne "oils," when it comes to long term durability.
Furthermore, you'll be far greener, environmentally-speaking, in using these, plus you'll be able to get two coats down in one work day.
Look at spec data and installation instruction, plus the tools and applicators needed, by going to these suppliers' websites: Basic Coatings and Bona Kemi.
You might want to read this article, presented in a magazine for pros and written by pros.
"A stripe is just as real as a dadgummed flower."
Gene Davis 1920-1985
Do you plan to complete the finishing yourself or hire someone? If you are subbing this out, i doubt you will find anyone to complete the shellac finish. The shellac debate has been discussed endlessly, so you should be able to find all the pros and cons of this. If you plan to complete the finish yourself, it is a bit more difficult to work with waterbased in comparison to the oil based products since the WB does not leave you much play time to touch up errors. I am not a professional floor finisher, but I figured out WB fine. Bona makes a number of great products in water based and oil. Personally, I think the one downfall of WB is you do get a bit more of a plastic looking floor. An oil based product will help reduce that effect. There was a thread about a fellow finishing his IPE floor not long ago that discussed many different oil based products.
It may be easiest to find a professional finish company that supplies the quality brand finishes and ask them for some advice. I did not buy my finish products from a big retailer and am glad I did not as the tips I got from my supplier were incredibly helpful.
I have to admit to being really fascinated by the whole shellac thing... if I ever get the right client I'd sure like to try it. Generally, I prefer WB from a easy clean up/ low stench perspective. But as mentioned earlier, I've also used "Street Shoe" by Basic. Fabulous stuff, I expect it will wear like iron and has a nice amber hue, very attractive. Pricey and a wee bit tricky but a great choice (until I get the chance to try shellac ;) )
Edited 6/2/2009 5:00 pm ET by PaulBinCT