Sealing and Varnishing

August 8-9, 2001

 Step Two: Sealing

  August 8 . . .When the yellow ground stain was dry (I waited around 24 hours), I put on two coats of the sizing-filler sealer that came with the International Luthiers Supply oil varnishing kit. I think it must be shellac. After each coat, I lightly sanded it with 400 wet/dry sandpaper. It took around four hours for each coat to dry.

Step Three: Varnishing

August 9 . . . I started the varnishing process today. After making sure my room was pretty much dust-free and using a tack cloth to remove all sanding dust from the violin, I mixed up my varnish. I had spent yesterday morning mixing different ratios of the yellow, red, and brown oil varnishes, until I came up with a mix that I thought would work. Basically, I am using about 8 parts brown, 2.5 parts red, 1.5 parts yellow, and 2 parts turpentine (to thin it a bit). As I add more coats of the varnish, the color should deepen; I'm hoping to come out with a nice amber/orange/red/brown color.

To apply the varnish, I used a 1/2" red sable filbert brush for the scroll area and the rims and a 1" ox hair flat brush for the rest. I found I liked the sable brush so much, that I went out today and bought a 3/4" red sable stroke brush, which I will use for the future coats.



I put on one coat this morning. I'm going to wait at least a day for it to dry --- I'll have to see how the drying goes before I put on another coat.


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