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  • I think "srutkowski" was being humorous.....

    I think "srutkowski" was being humorous.....

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  • The problem with using something like vodka is that it's not pure alcohol - spirits like that are at most 40% ethyl alcohol and the balance water & possibly flavourings. The shellac won't dissolve in the water, so it wouldn't apply correctly & would look terrible.I understand your concern, but the pure denatured alcohol actually evaporates during the application process, so nothing is left behind except the shellac. You don't need to worry about it.

    If memory serves me, I think Russian vodka is available at much higher alcohol content than is usual in North America - up to 90% or higher! What I'd expect if you used "ordinary" 40% vodka is that the dissolved shellac mixture would be "milky". Shellac is not dissolved in water, but dissolves in alcohol. Because water evaporates much slower than alcohol, I think there's a risk of the shellac not being deposited evenly; the water may also raise the grain or do other unpleasant things to the wood. Bottom line, I don't think I'd consider using vodka for this - it has much better uses in my household!

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  • What a great instructible - I'm going to use this on my salad bowl project!A word of caution, though, in regards to safety: you are using denatured alcohol (which is likely a mixture of methyl & ethyl, or ethyl with a benzol addition). The vapours from this are EXTREMELY FLAMMABLE, so make sure you are working in an area with good ventilation and no open flames or sparks. The same can be said of mineral spirits, and even more so of acetone! I would highly recommend that you use gloves when using any of these products - acetone especially is known to attack the liver and kidneys, and is easily absorbed through bare skin.

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