Painted Cabinets and Other Stuff

This will be the last blog on the cabinets. Perhaps when they are installed we will get some photos. Let’s do a quick re-cap of some points that I thought were of interest.


The plywood I used was pine. A couple of end caps I used 1/2″ then glued a 1/4″ maple faced plywood on as it was cheaper and better than buying the 3/4″ stuff. I was looking for a smooth, paintable surface. Where I did not do that, I used some auto body filler for anything major and then did a grain fill using Timbermate filler thinned down a bit. Sanded it smooth then used either Undercoater by General Finishes or BIN from Zinsser. I did the same on the MDF doors, to create a super smooth surface.

Next, I sprayed a water base paint, I used General Finishes brand but I could have used a good latex. I then applied a Top Coat of Clear, again, I chose a General Finish product, High Performance with a cross linker.

Cross linker is a fancy word for catalyst, but it goes a little further. To understand, in solvent based products, the resins are “melted” by the solvent or dissolved, if you will. When the solvent evaporates, the film is left behind. With a water base, the resins are suspended in a liquid, water, and when applied the resins stick together and when the water evaporates, you haev a film. The cross linker sort of welds them together instead of sticking them together so it produces a stronger, more durable finish.

The second method and the one I best prefer was to use a pigmented/tinted top coat. In this case, an acrylic finish also with the cross linker. It’s a color and finish all in one and having done this many times in solvent (lacquer) based finishes, I really wanted to be able to do it in water base. I am very pleased with the result. It turned out fantastically. In both cases I got a super finish.

The reason for the paint/clear coat thing was <to show you that you can do it and get a super finish. I do like the General Finish paint. Try it, I think you will understand. I did the color/top coat to show a simpler yet super effective way.

The other thing I did was that I left the backs off, drawer bottoms out, so we could finish all of them seperately. Makes for a lot of pieces and parts, but it also makes for access and the ability to avoid over spray and bounce back from trying to spray in confined areas.

I must say, now having covered the water base spectrum, it’s here, it’s good, it’s the future and those who would call it an unperfected finish have not taken the time and effort to familiarize and educate themselves to it’s use.


One last note. I sprayed the cabinets with my Turbinaire. I do like a turbine system and I especially like this one. It has the power, the adjustability to handle anything. I was also pleased that I was able to use a 1.5 needle/nozzle setup with all the products. That has to do with cup pressure and atomizing properties and all that stuff most of us like to avoid, but it makes all the difference. I wish you could feel these cabinets. They feel like “warm butter” just how I like them.


Last thought for today, I noticed that Woodcraft haas a clearance on the Alton Stainless Steel Wet/Dry 16-gallon Vacuum and that really surprised me because I have one and I love it. I found it to be one of the best I ever had. I use it for not only a vacuum but for all my router, band saw, drill press, disc/belt sander dust collection. Just letting you know they’ve got them at a clearance price and that I’ve been very pleased.

Catch Ya Later!

PS, the newsletter went out on Saturday and despite some technical difficulties, we got the 2009 Class Schedule up and they are filling fast. Thanks every one.

This entry was posted in 2009 Class Schedule, Finishing, Furniture Builds, Paint, Painted Cabinets, Woodworking and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Painted Cabinets and Other Stuff

  1. Scott Phillips says:

    Charles, the cabinets look great, thanks for posting the pics. I’m going to try the pigmented acrylic for some cabinets I’m making and spray them with the Earlex 5000. Would the 1.5 needle be the right one to use and do I need to thin it? Also, can that BIN primer be sprayed or should I use the GF Undercoater? Thanks

  2. Ace HoleInOne says:

    Awesome, love that water based. Thanks for taking the time and going through the steps. Smooooth!

    …hey did ya get a haircut and been going to the gym? đŸ™‚

    -Ace-

  3. scott , yes the BIN sprays well, as well as the acrylic..and the 1.5 needle/nozzel did well , the undercoater is super thick, go with the BIN, unless you have a super rough surface

    ace>>.I wish , that s Kevin…he will be the cabinet owner

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