Hand Tools Archive

Re: Bill - Zinsser can...
Response To:
Re: Bill - Zinsser can... ()

David Weaver
I believe that zinsser is a 3 pound cut.

Bill estimated in his post (IIRC) about 30 percent solids. a 3 pound cut (alcohol is less than a pound, but I think it's by volume - not an expert though)

should be 3 pounds shellac to one gallon of alcohol. (shellac's specific gravity is actually 1.15-1.2 or so, so there's a little error here).

At any rate, the simplistic view with the error included would be that there are 11 parts total, 3 shellac and 8 solvent.

So, the amount of shellac in the can is 3/11 * 32 (fl. oz in a quart can) = ...oops, rounding error....or copying error.

8.72 (I remembered that as 8.27 calculating it earlier) ounces of shellac in a can. as far as solids go.

23 or 24 ounces of solvent leaves somewhere around 5 1/3rd quarts of shellac to each gallon of solvent used.

the SLX type of DNA here is about $18 per gallon. The kind I prefer that's ethyl alcohol is a few bucks more per quart because it's not available in gallons.

Either way, I end up slightly above the cost of the zinsser can, their advantage being that it's not hard to dissolve shellac and pure ethanol is probably about $3 a gallon or less (made all over the place now that we put it in cars). If they can manage to buy shellac in india for $4 a pound, then their ability to make, distribute and then allow lowes and HD to mark up the product a hefty amount makes much sense.

We small timers are left grasping at the "shellac cutoffs".

All that said, I used about $7 or so of shellac and alcohol on each of the two telecasters that I showed pictures of, and there's just about nothing else that makes a suitable (to eye and touch) finish on a guitar that costs that little. Nitro lacquer is cheaper, as are acrylics, but I never liked the way they felt.

© 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.