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Old 09-21-2011, 04:32 PM
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Default Mini-Review of Epifane Rapid Clear finish

I bought a single can of their very different finish to try on some outdoor items in our backyard. It's marketed as not needed any sanding between coats, and can be used either as a total finish by itself, or a build-finish that gets top coated by traditional varnish.
After applying 2 coats, here are some brief thoughts. It's THIN, fair warning right away. Even my standard Epifanes High Gloss Varnish, thinned to almost 50% was still a bit thicker than the Rapid Clear.
So, use a foam brush to minimize runs and sags when applying, or if you insist on using a traditional varnish brush, you now know what you're in for.
I had way better control of it with a foam brush. They list it as a semi-gloss finish when dried. Too soon to tell really, maybe I'll get a better idea with another coat or two
It's low in odor, doesn't seem to give off as much fumes/smell when compared to regular varnish.
It's PURPLE. Yep, included a pic of the stuff in clear plastic cup, purple to a weird brown in color, but goes onto wood with very little tint or amber much like a water based finish.
This is not waterbased however, as Naptha is one of the ingredients right on the can.
Epifanes states not to thin it, I'd have to agree to that, since even on raw wood[which I sanded to on both my plant stands], it's so thin you are applying a regular penetrating coat at Rapid Clears full strength anyway, unlike regular varnish which is often thinned for the first few coats before switching to full strength film/varnish.
Cedar soaked it up like you'd expect, and the Purpleheart, with its much denser nature, acted probably like Teak and other Tropical woods in that you're building a film layer much faster since little product is being absorbed into the top wood fibers. Got that Hasslefactor?
It would probably build, although in thin coats, quickly on Teak and Teak like woods, such as one finds on a boat.....
I still plan to top coat it with 2 coats of regular Epifanes varnish, but it's nice to get 2 coats each day applied in this cooler weather as we sneak up on Fall. And the zero sanding feature of it really speeds things along between coats.
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Old 09-24-2011, 04:56 PM
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Default Re: Mini-Review of Epifane Rapid Clear finish

More thoughts- Drying time IS fast, so dust nibs are not a problem. Gloss is satin or semi-gloss once a few coats have been applied. Low evening temps while drying haven't been an issue so far.
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Old 09-24-2011, 08:06 PM
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Default Re: Mini-Review of Epifane Rapid Clear finish

I just read that you can thin lacquer with acetone to speed up drying in cold weather. Would it work with varnish?
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Old 09-24-2011, 10:40 PM
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Default Re: Mini-Review of Epifane Rapid Clear finish

Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelKellough View Post
I just read that you can thin lacquer with acetone to speed up drying in cold weather. Would it work with varnish?
A quicker solvent for varnish is VM&P Naptha. Varnish Makers & Painters Naptha.

Peter
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Old 09-27-2011, 02:37 AM
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Default Re: Mini-Review of Epifane Rapid Clear finish

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Originally Posted by plhalle View Post
A quicker solvent for varnish is VM&P Naptha. Varnish Makers & Painters Naptha.

Peter
Right, this the main solvent in varnish from what I've read about it and on the cans.
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Old 09-27-2011, 03:49 AM
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Default Re: Mini-Review of Epifane Rapid Clear finish

Acetone is significantly hotter than naptha.

But, I still don't know if it can be used to thin varnish and poly...probably not.

Last edited by MichaelKellough; 09-27-2011 at 04:13 AM.
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