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I started spraying pre-cat lacquer last fall when the temperatures here in St. Louis were cool. I thinned my lacquer with 25% lacquer thinner and achieved good results. Now that the temperatures are higher I experienced some orange peel. I have never used a retarder but it looks like I will now have to do so. My question is two-fold: 1. How do I mix the retarder and how can I get rid of the orange peel? By the time I obtain some retarder the initial coat will be approximately 24 hours old. Will the application of more lacquer with a retarder in it sufficiently melt the underlying layer to level out the orange peel and if not what can I do to eliminate it. I am spraying 2 large refrigerator panels.
What are you spraying with you may not want to thin so much if the thinner is a hot one it maybe drying to fast try a slower thinner ask you supply you probably need to sand out the orange peel .
Another coat will probably not level the current orange peel. Block sand with 320 grit. You can get different drying rates of lacquer thinner. Go to an auto paint supplier if necessary. Better look at nozzle size and pressures for the viscosity you are spraying.
Orange peel means that there is insufficient material coming from the gun. Check to see that you are putting a sufficient wet coat down and add retarder at 10% to help it level out.
in spraying additional coats, be sure you do not exceed recommended dry mil thickness or the lacquer can crack. That is only more good reason to thin the lacquer even more than 25%. I wouldn't be afraid to go to 50% since you have established the film thickness you need and now you just need an additional coat that will level out better and establish the sheen you want.
I would scuff sand to assure good adhesion and to help level the orange peel. If there is a slower thinner available from the manufacturer I would get some and mix a fresh batch. Avoid standard retarder (butyl cellusolve)only as last resort. It can be hard to dial in how much and too much can affect the cure and sheen.
Manufacturers are moving to high percent of acetone in their lacquer thinner blends in order to stay in compliance with voc regs. Acetone is an extremely fast solvent and thus works against good leveling. Its getting very hard to find a lacquer thinner that is not heavy in acetone, but they are around.
I quit using lacquer thinner years ago as
Thanks to all that responded. I discovered the problem was too light of a coat; I was spraying a 1 or 2 mil wet coat. When I increased it to a 4 or 5 mill wet coat and eliminated the thinner things worked out well. Thanks to all that contributed.