Messages Archive

living room cure

Bill Tindall, E.Tn.
Curing, mistakenly called "drying", varnish is a two step process that occurs simultaneously. The quickest step is evaporation of the solvent. The slower step, and the one that requires high temperatures, is the reaction of the varnish components with oxygen to crosslink.

The solvent evaporation step produces copious fumes which some people don't like. The cure also produces smell from volatile chemical pieces that are byproducts of the curing oil in the varnish. Good rule of thumb, if it smells like varnish it is still curing and becoming more durable.

When it is cold I cure inside too. As soon as the finish is not tacky it gets moved into the house. At this point most of the solvent, and odor, is gone. Only the odor of a tiny amount of exceptionally stinky curing byproducts will be detected. Celebrate this odor as a sign that the furniture piece is done and near ready to use.

© 1998 - 2017 by Ellis Walentine. All rights reserved.
No parts of this web site may be reproduced in any form or by
any means without the written permission of the publisher.