lacquer thinner vs mek
In wood finishing acetone is used as a solvent for lacquers and, along with MEK, as a common ingredient in paint removers. It is used in many industries as a cleaner and degreaser. Alcohol both dissolves and thins shellac. Copyright © var year = new Date();document.write(year.getFullYear()); Apollo Sprayers International, Inc. All rights reserved. MEK, also known as Butanone and Methyl Ethyl Ketone is a solvent that is related to acetone, because acetone is simply liquid ketone. VOCs are environmental (smog) pollutants. It is used in many industries as a cleaner and degreaser. It still appears strong enough to thin all common oils, varnishes and oil paints. %%EOF 26 0 obj <>/Filter/FlateDecode/ID[<58BED80CA6342E48A85925B8106D0D0C>]/Index[7 48]/Info 6 0 R/Length 93/Prev 764409/Root 8 0 R/Size 55/Type/XRef/W[1 2 1]>>stream Following is an overview of each of the most commonly available solvents. h�b``d``r```�w�01G�� 30�0�0�6��g�-`�aP^��$,��j���`��]�a��FA�|�EJ���+|�&�0 �� MEK or Methyl Ethyl Ketone is stronger than Acetone, because it has a slower evaporation rate and boils at a higher temperature. Click here to read about lacquer thinner. Low toxicity. Toluene evaporates a little faster than xylene, but this is significant only when using the solvent as a thinner. You shouldn’t use it in large quantities unless you wear a respirator mask or a good exhaust system in your shop. The common naphtha available in paint stores is VM&P Naphtha. So they are useful to fine artists but provide no special benefit to wood finishers. endstream endobj startxref Propylene glycol is a very slow evaporating alcohol that is often used as a “flow additive” in water-based finishes. So there was only one thinner for paint. Emulsified furniture polishes are better cleaners because they remove both solvent- and water-soluble dirt. Alcohol is the solvent because it dissolves solid shellac flakes and the dried finish, and it’s the thinner because it thins the liquid shellac after the flakes have been dissolved. The process is called distillation—and thus, petroleum distillates. You can add acetone to lacquer and shellac to get them to dry faster in cold temperatures. Methanol evaporates a little faster than denatured alcohol, but methanol is toxic and could blind or even kill you if you breathe too high a vapor concentration for too long. Crude is a mixture of hydrocarbon chains of various lengths and structures with unique boiling points. Unfortunately, this solvent isn’t widely available for consumers. %PDF-1.6 %���� The only sector in which turpentine is still used in any quantity is fine arts. Lacquer (nitrocellulose, CAB-acrylic, catalyzed), ← Older Post Acetone is often utilized as a paint thinner. Follow safety data sheets for MEK and Acetone for more information on proper safety and handling. These solvents are removed from mineral spirits and naphtha at refineries and sold separately as oil and grease removers. VM&P stands for “varnish makers and painters.” Stronger and faster evaporating naphthas exist, but these are rarely sold to the general public. Turpentine is a distillation of pine-tree sap. Amazingly, there are manufacturers who try to trick you into paying more by labeling their containers “pure” mineral spirits and charging more. You can usually substitute a brush cleaner for the mineral spirits or lacquer thinner you may otherwise use to clean your varnish or lacquer brushes. The nickname for mineral spirits is “paint thinner.” Back in the early days of mineral spirits, before the Second World War, all paints were oil-based. (It’s easiest to clean shellac with household ammonia and water.) Benefits of MEK. Technical Data | SDS | Request Quote. They include mineral spirits (informally referred to as “paint thinner”), naphtha, toluene, xylene and some “turpentine substitutes” such as turpatine and T.R.P.S. These differences are why MEK can be a stronger cleaning agent than acetone. Naphtha evaporates faster than mineral spirits and is “drier,” that is, less oily. So it’s rarely possible to dull them short of abrading with real sandpaper or steel wool. The disadvantage of odorless mineral spirits, of course, is that it is considerably more expensive because of the extra steps necessary to produce it. Cleaning grease or wax is no problem, but high-performance paints and finishes such as powder and UV-cured coatings, catalyzed lacquer, conversion varnish and even oil-based polyurethane are very solvent resistant. The two most widely used finishing solvents are mineral spirits and naphtha. HAPs are bad for us to breathe. You won’t damage any finish except shellac as long as you don’t soak the surface. This quality is convenient for distillation of moisture in certain applications. Some are even water-based, but these work slower and are less effective than solvent-based. Mineral spirits is strong enough for any normal operation. Today, with water-based paints and finishes in wide use, the name could be confusing to beginners. Many furniture polishes are emulsifications of petroleum distillates and water making them appear white (like milk, which is an emulsification of water and animal fat). Toluene, nicknamed “toluol,” and xylene, nicknamed “xylol,” are the strong, smelly, fast evaporating and “dry” parts of mineral spirits and naphtha. You will need to use a toothbrush or soft brass-wire brush to get the glue out of the pores. For more on dissolving and thinning, see What Dissolves and Thins What.). It’s important to emphasize that mineral spirits and paint thinner are the same thing. Lacquer Thinner is excellent at cleaning brushes, tools, and equipment immediately after use. The first gas to come off is methane, which doesn’t condense at room temperature, only at much colder temperatures.
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