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Ask the Staff


Some finishes may react with other finishes. I was wondering if I could use lacquer on top of danish oil or wiping varnish?



Hello James,

Thank you for your question.

As a standard rule, one would not chose to apply an oil-based wiping finish to then come along afterwards with a lacquer finish to put on top. Some folks say they have done so and had success, though in general, it is not recommended based on the overall finish differences.

You would want to read the label of the lacquer you are using. It says to apply onto clean, dry wood or only over an improved sealer mentioned by the manufacturer on the label, then applying over another cured finish could be problematic. If the lacquer laid out OK and did not craze or fish eye immediately, that still doesn't mean it would adhere well. It could peel away from poor adhesion (right off or at a later date). Most manufacturers simply do not say what can or cannot work with their product because there is too much other product out there they themselves have not tried with their product and too many variables with the end user in the application of the product(s).

If you go down this road, you may want the underlying oil finish to be good and dry first (no smell of the finish detectable). That may take days to weeks.

With any first finishing forays using product or combinations of products for the very first time, we say to know your methods and know your results first. This means you have to do test samples of your own and work them all the way through to completion. Do this before you start in on finishing your Mother-in-Law's piano bench.


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