looking for a hard (durable) white finish on a table top


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Old 09-07-15, 09:27 PM
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looking for a hard (durable) white finish on a table top

In the basement, I made "built-ins" by installing 4 white base cabinets. I added a sheet of 3/4" plywood on top with a routered edged. I like everything about it except the finish. I've got latex, semi-gloss white paint on it (several coats) which looked great, but even after months was tacky and things left on it would stick to it just a bit (i.e. the remote controls). Today I added a coat of polyurethane and it yellowed immediately (which I now know is something that I could have found out with just a little internet research). It is noticeable, because the cabinets are a bright white and the top is clearly a different color.

I'm willing to start all-over if I have to, but would rather try to salvage this if possible.

1. can I sand the polyurethane and then prime, paint and apply water-based polycrylic? if so, what type of primer, paint and polycrylics are best?

2. If I start over, what would you use? The top itself was relatively easy to make and I can spend the $45 on a new sheet of plywood, which might be just about as cheap in the end if I'm buying multiple products. If I go this route, should I go with an oil based paint from the beginning? Or do the latex and then the water based polycrylic?

thanks!
 
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Old 09-08-15, 02:34 AM
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Also, I should add, I have two small shelves that will go above it. They're at the stage where I've painted (same latex, semi-gloss), but have not added the polyurethane. What should I do with these in their state?
 
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Old 09-08-15, 03:33 AM
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Oil base poly/varnish will always yellow the underlying paint/stain and amber more with time. Even oil base white enamel will yellow as it ages. I'd suggest using a waterborne enamel! The dry almost as hard as oil base but won't yellow. If you can sand off 90% of the oil poly you can apply the waterborne directly to the painted shelves, if not it's a crap shoot as to whether or not it will adhere long term - it would be better to sand lightly and apply a solvent based primer first.

Latex enamels are prone to blocking [sticking] some worse/better than others.
 
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Old 09-08-15, 07:01 PM
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Thanks.

so for the two shelves that I haven't put the poly on, can I just paint over the latex paint with this waterborne enamel?

As for the big "counter top" with the poly on it, should I go at it with a belt sander or a random-orbit sander with medium grit? And by solvent-based, do you mean oil-based primer like Kilz or Bin? (I found another post by you about the topic.)

And of course, what is "Water borne enamel?" and where would I get it? From other posts, it looks like I need to get to a paint store (Sherwin Williams?).

Thanks again. I appreciate the help.
 
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Old 09-09-15, 04:32 AM
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Waterborne enamel can be applied directly over latex paint although a light sanding first is always a good idea. An over simplification of what waterborne enamel is would be a cross between oil base enamel and latex [a chemist would cringe at that explanation] All I know is it dries to a hard film like oil enamel but doesn't yellow and dries quick. Most paint stores sell waterborne enamel. I mostly go to SWP with their version being in their ProClassic line. The only down side to waterborne is they tend to price it higher than latex or oil

Oil base and shellac based primers are solvent based which includes the original Kilz and BIN.

No need to use a belt sander, an orbital sander would be fine. Mainly you just want to remove the sheen and scratch up [minutely] the underlying paint to give the next coat tooth to bond to.
 
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Old 09-09-15, 07:10 AM
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looks like I need to get to a paint store
My 2 would be to start going there for all your paint equipment, supplies and advice needs; paint departments just can't measure up.
 
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Old 09-09-15, 10:18 AM
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Thanks for all the help!

At this point, cost isn't an issue, because right now I'm months into the project and I have a shiny, yellow top on the otherwise, nice piece of furniture.

For the shelves, I'll sand 'em up and apply this on top.

For the counter top, I get the point about sanding up the poly enough for a primer to stick. So a coat of Kilz/Bin and then the enamel.

One coat enough? Or should I use multiple? It'll be in a relatively high traffic area, guaranteed to get drinks spilled and kids placing things on it.

This is what I found on SWP online: "Sherwin-Williams Proclassic Waterborne Interior Acrylic Enamel"

Thanks,
Mike
 
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Old 09-09-15, 12:12 PM
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1 coat of primer is almost always sufficient. With all the other coatings you applied, 1 coat of waterborne enamel should be ok. I'd apply a coat and see how it looks. No paint coating will be indestructible but it also isn't a big deal to recoat the wear areas later on to freshen it up.

IMO the ProClassic Waterborne is some of the best enamel I've ever used
 
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Old 09-18-15, 04:26 PM
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One more question... do I need the primer that Sherwin Williams sold me for $22 or am I ok with regular oil-based Kilz for $8 at Home Depot?

Sherwin Williams had: All Surface Enamel Oil Primer.
All Surface Enamel Oil Primer - Homeowners - Sherwin-Williams


Thanks again!
 
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Old 09-19-15, 03:18 AM
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Either one should do ok. ...........
 
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Old 09-23-15, 12:57 PM
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I used Kilz to prime it and then put the enamel on. It's not all the way dry yet, but it looks pretty bad (streaky and blotchy). I used a roller that the guy at Sherwin Williams sold me (small, "velour"), so it might be all just bad technique on my part. I'm used to the larger rollers with 1/2" nap.

What do you recommend I use for the second coat? I'll sand and then re-apply.

The Kilz took pretty well, but the way. All yellow tint gone, but I wasn't really careful with it, so there were definitely brush strokes. Should I sand it all and re-start with Kilz then the lacquer?

Any tips on technique?

I'm not in a hurry and want to get it right. thanks again for all the advice.
 
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Old 09-23-15, 01:07 PM
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Nothing wrong with a light sanding of the primer to smooth it out. Not a fan of the roller you used but most will leave some stipple behind so you may need to tip off with a brush.
 
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Old 09-23-15, 02:03 PM
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While I don't use them often - I like those little mini rollers. It's hard to say how much is the uneven prime job and how much improper rolling but it should be fixable by sanding and carefully applying another coat of enamel.
 
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Old 10-22-15, 03:52 AM
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Ok... so I sanded it down to smooth out the brush strokes and re-primed the whole thing with Kilz (oil based), then I sanded that lightly and re-applied the SW Pro Classic Water-based enamel with the mini-rollers that the guy sold me there. It came out very nice, but I'm wondering if I can't get it to be more durable. Just a little bit of use (after about a week of drying/curing and there are marks on the surface).

It's a semi-gloss finish, so maybe I should have gone with high-gloss. Can I put a coat of that on top of the semi-gloss?

Or should I put wax on top (seems labor intensive)?
 
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Old 10-22-15, 04:16 AM
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You can change sheens of enamel at any time, just need to lightly sand first. While a shinier paint is easier to clean, I don't know that it is more durable. A lower sheen is less likely to show wear or scuff marks than a higher sheen.

It's not a good idea to wax interior enamel. Residential paints don't wax well and any wax will complicate any future repaint.
 
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Old 10-23-15, 04:31 AM
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Thanks for the tip on not waxing -- i wasn't looking forward to that idea.

I guess I'll just keep some of the paint handy and touch it up every now and again if it gets scuffed.

How long until it is "cured"?

I have noticed a big improvement from the previous paint I had on it (just a white latex) in terms of tackiness.

Thanks again for all the advice!
 
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Old 10-23-15, 04:46 AM
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I'm not sure how long it takes waterborne enamel to cure Oil base enamels take 72 hrs and latex enamels can take a week or more to cure. I'd suspect waterborne cures in 3-4 days but don't know for sure.
 
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Old 10-23-15, 05:03 AM
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And what should I use to clean the surface from everyday wear? Soap and water or am I ok to use any chemicals on it?
 
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Old 10-23-15, 05:34 AM
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Most any household detergent/cleaner should be fine.
 
 

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