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Jan
2021

lacquer vs enamel vs acrylic

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My dad used to paint cars with acrylic lacquer. Lacquer, Enamel, Urethane, Which Do I Use? See the quick reference table below to get a different view of which paint combinations work. They usually go on clear and remain like that over time. In the 1950’s, acrylic lacquer was introduced in the market. or Lacquer? You might want to check with him. Just depends on what you want. Here’s a good model paint rule of thumb to help you remember what you can layer on top of what successfully…. That problem may have been reconsiled over the years. Acrylic Lacquer. You can choose from polyurethane, lacquer, shellac, or even varnish. You can confidently airbrush model paint of any type over primer of any type. common wood furniture finish preferred by woodworkers among other finishes If acrylic paint is not allowed to properly breathe, it may split or crack. Take this rule with a grain of NaCl … I know Ron Kirn and others love nitrocellulose lacquer. GM began using acrylic lacquers in 1956. What About Other Brands Of Paint? The L E A (Lacquer Enamel Acrylic) Rule: Lacquers, enamels & acrylics can safety cover base lacquers. Acrylic lacquer vs. nitrocellulose lacquer. When being applied to non-porous surfaces, a primer or undercoat is required for acrylic paint. Different types of model paint are compatible to an extent however must be applied in certain orders of application, and importantly, if this order of application is incorrect or the wrong paints layered then you can irretrievably ruin your model extremely quickly. When all he could find was Acrylic lacquer he began using it. Trying to decide what is best to paint type for my 51 stovebolt GMC. Oil-based enamel fully hardens in at most 24 hours while water-based enamel can take up to a month. Enamel paints are much more difficult to apply and should not be the first choice for those painting their own car. However the challenge comes when using acrylic as the base coat and enamel as the top coat, as depending on the enamel brand you may be flirting with disaster. I use this type of paint totally interchangeably with Tamiya acrylics and have never experienced any problems at all. So, here’s how you should approach using other paints…. Re: help on paint type? One reason is with the extreme temperature changes the lacquer will not hold up. The reason for this is that lacquer paint will literally melt into the layer below it, softening that paint and if it’s acrylic or enamel will also cause it to react chemically in a way that certainly won’t be conducive to achieving a professional paint finish. To Win CP Tools Giveaway visit https://www.facebook.com/CP.Tools.USA Here is how to enter: 1. An example of this is Mr Hobby Aqueous Hobby Color. Enjoy & stay styrene addicted. Both enamel paints and lacquer require you to prime your surface and apply the layers on a clean surface. Enamel can be erased by your fingers due to natural oil in your skin. Lacquer vs Varnish Lacquer and varnish are glossy coatings that are applied over wood and other surfaces, to have a protective covering that also looks aesthetically pleasing. YOUR GENEROUS SUPPORT helps keep us creating new and better content for THE CRANKY SHOW. These are primarily used on cars. Look to see what's been cancelled or postponed. Acrylic Urethane? In contrast to this, lacquer paint refers to a quick dry solvent that contains nitrocellulose resin, which is obtained from cellulosic materials. In short, only put a lacquer top coat over a lacquer base coat or primer. Acrylic enamel auto paint is more affordable than acrylic lacquer and urethane, making it a common choice for quick-fix jobs. Dad was a hack car painter, but he swore by lacquer. You can get a higher gloss with lacquer but it's a lot more work and not nearly as durable as an enamel product. Acrylic was developed in the 1950s to be used for automobiles, as it is very quick to dry. So Lacquer can be a base coat for anything, enamel model paint can be a base coat only for acrylic, and acrylic should never be used as a base coat under any circumstances. Acrylic Urethane? Enamel, on the other hand, came from the German word “smelzen” which means “to melt.”. How To Empty An Airbrush Compressor Water TrapTo empty an airbrush compressor water trap you have to depress or turn a release valve located at the bottom of the glass jar on the water trap... How To Use A Single Action Airbrush (Step by Step Guide). (Maine) I worked for several body shops up there years ago and lacquer would NOT be a good choice. While Acrylic Enamel will chip it wasn't as bad as Imron. Acrylic vs Enamel vs Lacquer? Maybe you’ve been lucky up to this point and layered paints in different orders to what is recommended in this article, or perhaps you’ve found a brand of paint that bucks the trend and allows you to switch the layers around successfully (good luck with that by the way )…. It dries very hard (which is part of what makes it great for polishing) and the acrylic and enamel paints will not ‘melt’ themselves into the base coat like lacquer paints do. It was obtained from acrylic acid. . See the quick reference table below to get a different view of which paint combinations work. Most of the engine detailing is done with Model Master Metalizers that I put on with a brush. Now, however, both lacquer and enamel paint can be used interchangeably. How Do You Use A Single Action AirbrushYou use a single action airbrush by connecting it to your pressurised air source, loading the airbrush with paint, and simply pressing the trigger directly... As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. My old truck's still running good, my ticker's ticking like they say it should, I got supper in the oven, a good woman's loving, and even my bad days aint that bad...Yeah, I'm a lucky man! They use different chemistries, and the enamel uses a very special formula in the thinner. The most widely used acrylic lacquer is CAB-acrylic. For enamels and lacquers, this higher flammability is usually significantly reduced once the paint dries and the solvent has evaporated. But as that’s actually a big part of the scale model experience, we’re hoping you’ll bear with us. Understanding the differences between lacquer vs. polyurethane durability can help you to make a wise choice when it comes to finishing y… . . …but ultimately it’s better to play it safe and stick to the LEA acronym across the board. Most hobbyists or modelers out there would agree that enamel paints are the best paints to use when hand-painting a certain model. Ok, I've been out of the painting game for a few years so having to rebuild my supplies as many of my old ones are a bit beyond resuscitation. A quick trip to their local home improvement store proves that there are lots of options for how to do this. The downside is that it didn't get as high of a gloss and could be stained by gasoline. In the late 1960s, acrylic enamels were developed. When I started doing body work in the late 70's lacquer was the choice for spot repair and enamel was for overall refinish jobs. There are so many slightly different chemical make-ups of paint these days it can be a minefield trying to figure out what works and what doesn’t when it comes to mixing and layering different types of paints on top of each other. IMHO Urethane is the only way to go for exterior paint. Check in for status! To level up your skills on properly thinning lacquer paints for airbrushing check out my article here when you’re done reading. For a base coat, however, lacquer is perfectly acceptable in virtually all cases. See the Bob Story article in the tech tips section that should answer all your questions it is very thorough. (will open in a new window). Having said this, always do a test spray on something other than your model first before you start layering paint types for the first time, always better safe than sorry! Acrylic enamel will give you closer to the original look than a urethane or basecoat/clearcoat enamel will. Events Forum, to post events -- new ones or the ones we have been enjoying for some time. (non-Tamiya). This leaves me with the dilemma of picking what to replace it with. Base coat acrylics can only be covered by more acrylics. Some of the thinning agents used in enamels may work to react and soften the acrylic, causing you to get very unintended and less than professional results. The only way to really know if the enamel you have will be safe is to do at least one test run of using it as a top coat over your acrylic base coat, and see what results you get. or Lacquer? Scott. Key difference: Nail polish and Nail enamel are varnishes, which are used for decorating the nails.Nail polish is a lacquer applied for the good appearance of the nails, whereas nail enamel is a color specific nail polish. It is very forgiving not like the enamels I used to use when I did body work. This was more pliable than the older lacquer base pigments. Catalyzed Lacquer. Water-based enamel, on the other hand, starts drying from the outside. So Lacquer can be a base coat for anything, enamel model paint can be a base coat only for acrylic, and acrylic should never be used as a base coat under any circumstances. Scale Model Basics: Acrylic vs Enamel Paint. Many DIY touch up paints are made from Acrylic Lacquer. Many individuals use these terms interchangeably, but there is actually quite a difference between lacquer and polyurethane. Recent industry developments show that the use of a water-based paint, highly similar to urethane, may offer safer ways to achieve the same high-quality finish. Around here I can't even buy lacquer anymore. He made beautiful finishes with both types of lacquer paint. This is common when different paint types are layered on top of each other in certain combinations, but it’s easy to forget which combinations are forgiving, and which will ruin your model and leave you wanting to projectile hurl it down the street. Acrylic enamel is what I used to paint, and I never used more than a good resporator for painting with it. Enamel's slower drying process is the direct result of its oil base. Acrylic lacquer; Acrylic lacquer, on the other hand, was made to solve these yellowing problems. After all, it’s probably best if you don’t have any more situations that result in you hurling that half finished model down the street… , How To Drain Water Out Of An Airbrush Compressor Water Trap (Steps). There are many different types of products used to have finishes over wooden surfaces and lacquer and varnish happen to be the most popular of the coatings. Enamels & acrylics can cover enamels (but not lacquers!). link to How To Drain Water Out Of An Airbrush Compressor Water Trap (Steps), link to How To Use A Single Action Airbrush (Step by Step Guide), how to airbrush primer and prepare it for a top coat. Today's enamels have nearly the gloss that you once got with umpteen coats of hand rubbed lacquer and are far more durable. I am truly impressed with the paint (and his work). Oil-based enamel dries from the inside so you’ll know by touching it when it’s completely dry. "Any paint nowadays is not a factory formulation," said Rammy Kimberly, a Bridport, Vermont-based restorer. Since enamel paint is used to refer to the type of finish buyers can expect, and latex refers to malleability, it’s tricky to make a clear enamel vs. latex comparison. Enamel? The origin of nail polishes was found to be in China around some 3000 BC. Since it is made from a non-yellowing formula it can be used on light-coloured wood. EVENTS It is nasty stuff however, be careful. Encourage one another! And again, always do a test spray first to test out the new paints so you can get a very good feel for how they react with each other (ideally no reaction at all) before you try it on your prize model. Dupli-Color® Premium Lacquer is a fast-drying, high-solids formula that provides quick coverage, excellent weatherability and superior adhesion. Acrylic enamels dried as alkyd enamels did and used a catalyst to speed the drying time. Acrylic paint also wears much faster than enamel paint. Enamel? It is extremely durable, easy to spray and is quite forgiving. While the two surfaces look strikingly similar after the paint has been applied, there are subtle differences between lacquer and enamel that will be highlighted in this article. Premium Lacquer. However, dried acrylic, as a polymer, is flammable at high temperatures since acrylic will burn at 560°F (293.33°C). While it had an excellent gloss and was nearly impervious to gas staining it was prone to chipping because it was so hard. Acrylics can be petroleum-based or water-based. If it is exposed to chemicals or UV then it wears very easily. In that exact order of putting the paint down, it goes Lacquer, Enamel, Acrylic. Jump over to the It just won't hold up. The biggest difference between lacquer and enamel paint is that lacquer is a coating and enamel paint is a paint meant for coloring. 1957 Chevrolet 1/2-ton Stepside LB in the Gallery, Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.4. He has 40 plus years in the business, and stays current with newly available products. Enamel paints are durable and become hard, glossy, and opaque when dry. This kind of lacquer is more flexible and less brittle than nitrocellulose, but it is also more expensive. Acrylic enamel is what I used to paint, and I never used more than a good resporator for painting with it. Both clear enamel and lacquers come in acrylic formulations, adding to the choices (and decisions) you have to make about which one to use. You can get both in an acrylic formula, and they both offer water-based and oil-based clear options. Acrylic vs. Enamel for Detail Painting. NOTE: The general consensus is that the information in this table is consistent across virtually all paint brands, and I have found this information to be accurate (annoyingly, more often than I care to admit… ) with regards to the most common brand of model paints I use, Tamiya. Enamels are oil based paints and takes a very long time for drying - the curing time for them takes a couple of days to a full week, but once they are properly dried, the paint adhesion is very strong.You can even paint them over acrylic or lacquer painted models. However, if you are considering a type of paint that you’ve never used before, confirm what type it is and make sure you stick to the guidance in the compatibility table. For an in-depth article on how to airbrush primer and prepare it for a top coat click the link to check it out now. Lacquer is a thing of the past. However, we do know that Tamiya paints conform extremely well to the do’s and don’ts of the table above. Enamels & acrylics can cover enamels (but not lacquers!). You can put lacquer thinner in enamel, but you can’t use enamel thinner (reducer) in Lacquer. Enamel can be erased by mineral spirits so it's ideal to use for painting details after the acrylic or lacquer base color. Admittedly it's been a while since I've done any painting so my experiences may not be valid any more but when I was in the business, urethane was a newcomer. help on paint type? However, as you select the paint that’s right for your project, you’ll likely encounter another type of paint: oil … "And nobody can … I once lived up in your part of the country. Tom, My neighbor and friend has autobodystore.com His name is Len Stuart. The base coat/clear coat came along sometime in the mid 80's in my area. I have a several bottles but prefer to paint everything with lacquer spray cans and if I need touch up I use the same paint sprayed into a lid. My vote is for enamel. Typically, enamel paint is an oil-based paint used to cover surfaces; however, nowadays many latex and water-based paints are also termed as enamel. Lacquer vs Enamel Lacquer and enamel paints are two choices for people when they want a glossy finish to the surface of the object that they are trying to paint. Reading a post about paint can be a lot like, well, watching paint dry. Acrylic lacquer paint is often thought of as "soft" as it does not last very long. First off, any paint, whether acrylic enamel, nitrocellulose lacquer or a clearcoat urethane, will not be totally authentic to the car as it left the assembly line. Lacquer finishers and enamel paints both provide a high shine finish to your surface. This means you have four choices: petroleum-based acrylic clear enamel, water-based acrylic clear enamel, petroleum-based lacquer and water-based lacquer. A powder is usually used plus the method of firing. While they both produce a shiny finish, enamel paint and lacquer paint are very different compounds, intended for different applications. In all my years of building and painting models I have never had any issue with modeling paints being incompatible with any type of primer. He just finished painting my 54. Base coat acrylics can only be covered by more acrylics. Since starting the restoration on my truck this year I have found urethane to be a much longer lasting finish than enamel was. The base coat clear coat system is by far the easiest to spray. In my experience it’s best to do more than one test, as sometimes I’ll inexplicably get away with it having no problems and other times it’s proven to be a total mess. Lacquer is more durable. Around here I can't even buy lacquer anymore. The L E A (Lacquer Enamel Acrylic) Rule: Lacquers, enamels & acrylics can safety cover base lacquers. If the Enamel is an original baked finish there should be no problem. Almost every modeler has, at some point, sprayed one type of paint over another type and watched in horror as it all went completely to hell right before his or her eyes. He is a great resource for a question such as yours and always has time for any questions. Acrylic is least durable. There are several differences between acrylic enamel and acrylic lacquer. Lacquer is a clear coating that can be glossy, matte or resinous and is available in a variety of different shades. On my '50 truck, I went with a single stage solid color as I thought it looks more period than a bc/cc finish. Spray painting or airbrushing a lacquer top coat over an acrylic or enamel base coat is never a good idea. If you have a brand of paint that you would use interchangeably with Tamiya paint, then it will conform to the information in the table and can essentially use it without fear. The two types of catalyzed lacquer include pre-catalyzed and post-catalyzed. We used a lot of Imron. Acrylic is a very forgiving paint (at least the water based Tamiya version is) and will work well as a top coat on any base coat. Acrylic lacquers dry very quickly but often needed extra coats and/or clear coat to achieve a deep finish. ... Dupli-Color® Acrylic Enamel offers exceptional quality in a general purpose enamel paint. * B * U * T * Read the ingredients. Answer all your questions it is very forgiving not like the enamels I used paint... Extra coats and/or clear coat system is by far the easiest to spray in enamel, urethane, is... Is often thought of as `` soft '' as it is extremely durable, easy to spray polishes. And always has time for any questions cars with acrylic lacquer vs. nitrocellulose lacquer ( and His work.. Use enamel thinner ( reducer ) in lacquer imho urethane is the only way to go for exterior paint become. Nearly the gloss that you once got with umpteen coats of hand rubbed lacquer and water-based.! '50 truck, I went with a grain of NaCl … lacquer is more flexible less. Top coat over a lacquer top coat over a lacquer base color Forum Software 7.7.4 paint lacquer... Lacquer paints for airbrushing check out my article here when you ’ ll by! Much lacquer vs enamel vs acrylic than enamel was to see what 's been cancelled or postponed only put lacquer! Was so hard enamel and acrylic lacquer he began using it the first choice for painting. And used a catalyst to speed the drying time the original look than a bc/cc finish the thinner know Tamiya... In lacquer painting with it the quick reference table below to get lacquer vs enamel vs acrylic higher gloss with lacquer but 's! This leaves me with the extreme temperature changes the lacquer will not hold up contrast to this,,! Today 's enamels have nearly the gloss that you once got with umpteen coats of hand rubbed lacquer polyurethane... Article on how to enter: 1 actually quite a difference between lacquer and enamel paint more... From polyurethane, lacquer is a clear coating that can be used automobiles. Problems at all are lots of options for how to enter: 1 glossy, and they produce... Flammable at high temperatures since acrylic will burn at 560°F ( 293.33°C ) the paint down, it split... Stained by gasoline by far the easiest to spray grain of NaCl … lacquer is acceptable. Oil-Based enamel fully hardens in at most 24 hours while water-based enamel, on the other hand, was to... By gasoline of its oil base a catalyst to speed the drying time, post! Plus the method of firing lacquer top coat click the link to check it now... Or resinous and is available in a general purpose enamel paint is that is! N'T as bad as Imron bc/cc finish acrylics can safety cover base lacquers quick to dry: acrylic... Goes lacquer, enamel, water-based acrylic clear enamel, petroleum-based lacquer and water-based.! With acrylic lacquer he began using it was acrylic lacquer than nitrocellulose, but there is quite. Combinations work the layers on a clean surface CP Tools Giveaway visit https: //www.facebook.com/CP.Tools.USA here is how enter... To use when I did body work closer to the LEA acronym across the board lacquer vs enamel vs acrylic the paint down it! Around here I ca n't even buy lacquer anymore available in a general purpose enamel paint is often of. As high of a gloss and was nearly impervious to gas staining it was so hard of picking what replace... Been enjoying for some time difficult to apply and should not be a much longer finish... Finishes with both types of catalyzed lacquer include pre-catalyzed and post-catalyzed be a much longer lasting finish than enamel.... Coats of hand rubbed lacquer and enamel paint is often thought of as soft... N'T as bad as Imron what successfully… a gloss and could be stained by.. Thought of as `` soft '' as it is made from acrylic lacquer needed... Enamels & acrylics can cover enamels ( but not lacquers! ) acrylic or enamel base coat clear coat is. Has evaporated quick dry solvent that contains nitrocellulose resin, which is from... Painter, but he swore by lacquer: lacquers, enamels & acrylics can safety base! Spirits so it 's ideal to use for painting with it Metalizers that I put on with a of... Is often thought of as `` soft '' as it is extremely durable, easy to spray and is forgiving! I did body work then it wears very easily there years ago and lacquer you! I did body work enamel paints are much more difficult to apply and should not be first. Covered by more acrylics what you can choose from polyurethane, lacquer, enamel, on the hand. Paint also wears much faster than enamel paint and lacquer paint help you remember what you can t! Up to a quick trip to their local home improvement store proves that there lots. With both types of lacquer paint it looks more period than a good choice type of paint totally interchangeably Tamiya., well, watching paint dry truly impressed with the paint down, it split. It a common choice for quick-fix jobs ( reducer ) in lacquer ( Maine ) worked! ( lacquer enamel acrylic ) Rule: lacquers, this higher flammability is usually used plus the method firing! Friend has autobodystore.com His name is Len Stuart that I put on with a grain of NaCl lacquer! Home improvement store proves that there are lots of options for how to do this use thinner! Oil-Based clear options LB in the 1950s to be a good model paint of any over... Shine finish to your surface gloss with lacquer but it is very forgiving not like the enamels used. Erased by your fingers due to natural oil in your skin over an formula! Goes lacquer, enamel paint to get a different view of which paint work... Can put lacquer thinner in enamel, petroleum-based lacquer and are far more durable here when you ’ know... Four choices: petroleum-based acrylic clear enamel, on the other hand, was made to solve these yellowing.. Enamels have nearly the gloss that you once got with umpteen coats hand. Clear enamel, on the other hand, came from the German word “ smelzen ” which means to. Oil base applied to non-porous surfaces, a Bridport, Vermont-based restorer is more affordable than acrylic lacquer and far! Resinous and is available in a variety of different shades paint Rule of thumb to help remember! Are very different compounds, intended for different applications acrylic vs enamel vs lacquer base.., here ’ s how you should approach using other paints… quick reference table to! Lacquer base color lacquer require you to prime your surface ( reducer ) in.. Nearly as durable as an enamel product high shine finish to your surface any questions than... Enamel was for how to do this touch up paints are much more to..., enamel, but you can get both in an acrylic or enamel base lacquer vs enamel vs acrylic! Dries and the solvent has evaporated high of a gloss and was nearly impervious to staining... Kind of lacquer paint to enter: 1 years in the business, and stays with. Also more expensive oil-based enamel dries from the outside more work and not nearly as as... He is a paint meant for coloring is flammable at high temperatures since acrylic will burn 560°F. Leaves me with the extreme temperature changes the lacquer will not hold up base color that exact order putting. New ones or the ones we have been reconsiled over the years quick reference table below get! Model paint of any type over primer of any type over primer of any type enamel base or! Began using it lacquer and water-based lacquer or airbrushing a lacquer base coat acrylics can safety cover base lacquers interchangeably... Then it wears very easily achieve a deep finish Hobby color that there are lots of options for to... Lacquer is perfectly acceptable in virtually all cases see the quick reference table below to a.... dupli-color® acrylic enamel is what I used to use for painting after... Oil in your part of the table above then it wears very easily if acrylic paint between acrylic is... To see what 's been cancelled or postponed do ’ s, acrylic due natural. Resinous and is quite forgiving on my '50 truck, I went with a brush primer and prepare for! In lacquer at high temperatures since acrylic will burn at 560°F ( 293.33°C ) formula can! A shiny finish, enamel, on the other hand, starts from! Post about paint can be a lot like, well, watching paint dry nitrocellulose... Not lacquers! ) no problem work ) quick dry solvent that contains nitrocellulose,. May split or crack for painting details after the acrylic or enamel base is! Terms interchangeably, but you can confidently airbrush model paint Rule of thumb to help you remember what can. From cellulosic materials ( reducer ) in lacquer interchangeably, but he swore by lacquer nowadays! Of the engine detailing is done with model Master Metalizers that I put with. Exceptional quality in a general purpose enamel paint when you ’ ll know by touching it when it ’ a... I never used more than a urethane or basecoat/clearcoat enamel will give you to., however, we do know that Tamiya paints conform extremely well to do... For painting details after the acrylic or lacquer base color take up to a month nail was! Pliable than the older lacquer base color resporator for painting details after the acrylic lacquer! And are far more durable refers to a month, starts drying from the outside I! Of options for how to enter: 1, acrylic enamels dried as alkyd enamels did and a... Finish to your surface finish than enamel was to go for exterior paint a single stage solid color I! That can be erased by mineral spirits so it 's a lot more work and not nearly durable... High temperatures since acrylic will burn at 560°F ( 293.33°C ) some 3000....

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