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Architectural Finishing Forum - Flow Out Additive For Oil Base Interior Enamel

david perata - Sat Feb 20, 2010 7:21 pm
Post subject: Flow Out Additive For Oil Base Interior Enamel
I paint for a living and although I don't often use oil base enamel for interior woodwork around here, I do when the customer wants a nice finish.

In the old days we used to add Penetrol for better flow out but I'm painting white and I had a friend years ago who used it to spray kitchen cabinets white and was sued because the paint yellowed.

I've been adding thinner but I'd really like something better. Would BLO yellow the enamel? Would it add a longer time to dry?

Any other ideas?
Jeff - Mon Feb 22, 2010 6:32 pm
Post subject:
I would say the issue is alkyd paints in general will yellow and your friends problem was that the interiors probably yellowed more (the parts not exposed to light). This is normal with any alkyd paint. While Penettrol contains linseed oil (maybe) I'm not sure it was entirely to blame.

If I were concerned with yellowing I wouldn't use alkyd paint to begin with, however avoid the linseed oil. I'll let Tim Leahy chime in on this to see what would work as a flow out additive.
Tim Leahy - Mon Feb 22, 2010 8:49 pm
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Jeff is right. I am currently repainting a job done 3 years ago with Benjamin Moore oil in white. We did the job then and warned the customer beforehand. Like many, she loves the old oil enamel finish, but when she redesigned her pictures on her wall and changed the swing of a closet door,she now understands. There is nothing that could be done to prevent it.
In your case, it sounds as if you are already using the oil finish with a thinner additive. If it isn't too late, switch to a high quality waterborne enamel. You can do all of your prep, coat the woodwork with the oil, and scuff it and apply a last coat of waterborne. The Sherwin Williams Pro-Classic levels well, and dries hard. Use a good 10% of Floetrol added and it will allow a nice wet edge. With a VERY good quality nylon/polyester brush apply the paint liberally, and tip it off only once or twice, then let it flow out on it's own. Make sure the room is warm, lay it down, leave it alone. . . .

In the future, copy me. Clean, sand, vac, oil prime, 2 proclassic topcoats. Let us know how you do. . .
david perata - Mon Feb 22, 2010 9:38 pm
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Thanks very much for that info. It's great to know about the SW Pro-Classic. But I'll have to go your route on the next job. I'm already committed with a lot of baseboard and a number of door jambs.

However, although I am using oil base for a higher class job for these folks, some discoloration isn't going to be a factor for them. The trim is downstairs in the kids rooms and if you could see what I had to start with you'd understand that in light of the smooth finish I've already given them, they aren't going to notice any discoloration. They are quite happy already.

But in the future I'll go with the SW for a high class job. I've used Floetrol before and I just didn't know whose latex enamel I was going to use around here (Iowa) to get a good flow out. I live in a rural farming area and get all my paint at the local Hardware Hank's, which sells Val Spar. For the norm around these parts it has served me well and meets everybody's quality level.

Actually I could have used latex enamel on this job but I talked them into a higher class finish, which I am giving them.

Anyway, thanks a lot for the tips. I'm anxious to try the SW next time.
rex - Sat Feb 27, 2010 10:01 pm
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I am also concerned about oil paints yellowing. I did a kitchen cabinet paint job about 3 years ago with Benj. Moore Impervo and was just at the house the other day to do some other work. Peeked at the kitchen cabs and they looked nice on the outsides. Got more curious and opened one and the interior of the door was quite yellow. I absolutely hate seeing that. I want to take the acrylic plunge someday but am too chicken.LOL There is a paint at my local paint store that is called Majik Diamond Hard Enamel. The store owner/ ex-painting contractor tells me it will stick to anything(its a DTM paint"direct to metal") It is suppose to level extremely well also. They tell me you can apply it directly to varnished (or lacquered) cabinets with no primer for bonding. I tried it once on an exterior Bilco door and it worked well and rolled well. I simply have to make it a point to try it more often in place of Impervo to get used to its working properties. Hopefully it would spray well too. Trouble is Im "old school" and still like the appearance of oil finishes. Gotta take the acrylic plunge someday and change my habits. Wink
david perata - Sat Feb 27, 2010 10:10 pm
Post subject:
I know you can get acrylic latex enamel to flow well if you have a good product to begin with and add Floetrol to it. It sounds like the Sherwin Williams Pro-Classic is the ticket. I looked on their web site and it sounds pretty good. And as the above post says, you have to put a generous amount on and lightly tip it off. If the stuff's any good at all it will level itself as it dries.

Right now I'm priming six panel doors wiith oil base thinned with Penetrol & thinner. A person can go crazy painting these all day! The repetition is murder.
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