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amber shellac substitute

Old 07-09-21, 11:34 AM
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southpier
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amber shellac substitute

seems Zinsser has run out of half-pints. for handlebar touch ups a quart is exponentially more than i could ever justify.

Q: anyone have a substitute?

i wonder if gasket shellac from the automotive store would work?
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Old 07-09-21, 11:43 AM
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This?

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Old 07-09-21, 11:44 AM
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Maybe shellac is another thing that'll be scarce for a time since it also is heavily dependent on India, Thailand and other Asian sources.

I've used shellac flakes for a long time and last sources I used were these:

https://www.shellac.net/

https://www.shellacshack.com/

Ethanol or pure Isopropyl work the best. Methanol gives a softer finish that gets gummy quick. IMO.


What do you use if for on a bike? Old style cloth bar tape?
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Old 07-09-21, 04:22 PM
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I mix my own shellac from flakes also for woodwork. The flakes last darn near forever so you can always mix up a fresh batch. Some blonde de-waxed shellac flakes mixed with Denatured alcohol will make the old-school shellac. I've purchased from shellac.net also.

Shellaced cloth bar tape is a cool old-school look if that's what you're using it for.


--

Last edited by drlogik; 07-09-21 at 04:26 PM.
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Old 07-09-21, 04:58 PM
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Originally Posted by drlogik View Post
I mix my own shellac from flakes also for woodwork. The flakes last darn near forever so you can always mix up a fresh batch. Some blonde de-waxed shellac flakes mixed with Denatured alcohol will make the old-school shellac. I've purchased from shellac.net also.

Shellaced cloth bar tape is a cool old-school look if that's what you're using it for.


--
Shellacked cloth tape looks great finished off with jute twine wrappings.
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Old 07-09-21, 05:26 PM
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Shellacked cloth tape looks great finished off with jute twine wrappings.
Especially if a complimentary color is used! There's a fellow in my town that has a couple of bikes with shellaced bar tape and from ten feet away it looks like a custom leather bar. I've seen some bars done with the criss-cross or Argyle pattern and they look cool too.
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Old 07-10-21, 06:58 AM
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Has anyone ever tried a polyurethane in place of shellac? I use it to finish wood and fishing poles all of the time but have never tried either on bar tape.

The oil based stuff should yellow like a shellac.
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Old 07-10-21, 11:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
Maybe shellac is another thing that'll be scarce for a time since it also is heavily dependent on India, Thailand and other Asian sources.

I've used shellac flakes for a long time and last sources I used were these:

https://www.shellac.net/

https://www.shellacshack.com/

Ethanol or pure Isopropyl work the best. Methanol gives a softer finish that gets gummy quick. IMO.


What do you use if for on a bike? Old style cloth bar tape?
yes; Newbaum yellow cloth tape, twine whipping on both ends, and then coated w/ amber shellac. matches my B17 saddle and ties in w/ Berthoud bag leather trim. the first few rides it's like 60 grit sandpaper but then smooths out and just needs a touch up coat in the hard used spots like around the bar end shifters.
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Old 07-10-21, 11:24 AM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv View Post
This?

yes; i used to be able to order it from the local paint store.
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Old 07-10-21, 12:41 PM
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How about buy a quart?

It's about the same price as a half pint and a brush will fit into the can.
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Old 07-10-21, 03:41 PM
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Shellac twine also looks good with leather bar tape
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Old 07-10-21, 06:26 PM
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Originally Posted by woodcraft View Post
How about buy a quart?

It's about the same price as a half pint and a brush will fit into the can.
it may come to that. but shellac has a short shelf life even before opening. i need about 2 tablespoons to hit the worn spots on my bars.
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Old 07-10-21, 07:35 PM
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Originally Posted by southpier View Post
it may come to that. but shellac has a short shelf life even before opening. i need about 2 tablespoons to hit the worn spots on my bars.

Huh. I have a gallon of that that I've been using for at least a couple of years & is OK. Maybe slightly slower drying but NBD.
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Old 07-10-21, 07:47 PM
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Originally Posted by drlogik View Post
I mix my own shellac from flakes also for woodwork. The flakes last darn near forever so you can always mix up a fresh batch. Some blonde de-waxed shellac flakes mixed with Denatured alcohol will make the old-school shellac. I've purchased from shellac.net also.

Shellaced cloth bar tape is a cool old-school look if that's what you're using it for.


--
Originally Posted by southpier View Post
...shellac has a short shelf life even before opening. i need about 2 tablespoons to hit the worn spots on my bars.
Since you only need a small amount from time to time, you really shouldn't overlook the idea of using flakes as drlogik and Iride01 suggest. That way you can keep a sealed jar of flakes and a bottle of alcohol on hand and mix up a batch whenever you need it. This woodworking blog addresses the shelf life of shellac flakes. It's common in the guitar building world (and perhaps in the wider woodworking community) to dissolve the shellac in Everclear (95%), which is readily available if you can't find or don't want to shell out for anhydrous ethanol. The bonus is that you can also make yourself a cocktail to sit back with and admire how awesome your freshly shellacked bar tape looks. Can't do that with any Zinsser products.
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Old 07-10-21, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by southpier View Post
it may come to that. but shellac has a short shelf life even before opening. i need about 2 tablespoons to hit the worn spots on my bars.
Am I missing something? Why would you buy a quart when the 1/2 pint you want is readily available?
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Old 07-10-21, 10:43 PM
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Just get flakes and mix what you need. This has the bonus advantage of giving you control over the pound cut.
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Old 07-11-21, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv View Post
Am I missing something? Why would you buy a quart when the 1/2 pint you want is readily available?
bad ebay memories from 20 years ago. never again!
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